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Wikipedia mentions that the term was used in Oxford and Cambridge universities at least in 1464.

But I wonder whether the title was used somewhere before. Was is used under Ancient Rome?

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I'd look into en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Parlement - going back to 1260, but not sure if the title president was used for the chairmen from the start. – Felix Goldberg Dec 9 '13 at 9:05

From the Online Etymology Dictionary entry the Latin is given as praesidentum (nominative praesidens) meaning "president, governor", from whence English derived it via the Old French "president".

The OED lists several usages dating from the 1370's and 1380's for both the appointed head of a territory or district (sense 1) and for the appointed or elected head of a committee or group who then presides over meetings (sense 2).

The 1374 entry in the OED (sense 1) is the oldest I saw there.

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Can you check if my guess (in the comment to OP) makes sense? – Felix Goldberg Feb 20 '14 at 13:14
@FelixGoldberg: As I noted: "The 1374 entry in the OED (sense 1) is the oldest [evidenced usage] I saw there" for the word president. – Pieter Geerkens Feb 20 '14 at 23:19

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