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Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English
▪ They expressed the triumph of legal equality and state authority over the privileges of the landed aristocracy.
▪ This alliance of the monarchs with the army and the landed aristocracy lasted into the twentieth century.
▪ On the one hand they resented the entrenched power of the landed aristocracy.
▪ The traditional governing class with deep roots in the landed aristocracy was gradually displaced as the Third Reich consolidated its position.
▪ They relied heavily on the readiness of the local aristocracy and gentry to go along with them.
▪ In the fifth century the popes embarked, in alliance with the local aristocracy, on a programme of urban renewal.
▪ Thus reform could involve a clash with the vested interests of local aristocracies.
▪ It felt as though the whole local aristocracy was towering over him.
▪ The reality was the allegiance to Rome of the local aristocracies which in turn conditioned the behaviour of their clients and followers.
▪ With rare exceptions, they were nominated essentially by the local aristocracy, particularly by the Duke of Newcastle.
▪ The old Lombard aristocracy was gradually crumbling away except in the far north and the distant south.
▪ Her people belonged to the old aristocracy of New York.
▪ Here too wealth and power were concentrated in the hands of the magistracy, the clergy and the landed aristocracy.
▪ They bought their way into the landed aristocracy.
▪ Daughters of rich merchants would often marry into the aristocracy.
▪ The nation's elite sends its children to boarding schools in the tradition of the British aristocracy.
▪ Governing elites are usually differentiated into military, religious, and commercial aristocracies.
▪ He dresses conservatively-black shoes and all-the only hint at aristocracy being a tiny monogram on the shirt pocket.
▪ Her people belonged to the old aristocracy of New York.
▪ His conception of the aristocracy was an exalted one; so was his conception of empire.
▪ The aristocracy may not have done as well out of the change as its authors planned.
▪ Therefore, the monastic reforms should be regarded at least as much in the light of co-operation as of combat between king and aristocracy.
▪ We just have to hope your aristocracy don't read the Daily Express.
The Collaborative International Dictionary

Aristocracy \Ar`is*toc"ra*cy\, n.; pl. Aristocracies. [Gr. ?; ? best + ? to be strong, to rule, ? strength; ? is perh. from the same root as E. arm, and orig. meant fitting: cf. F. aristocratie. See Arm, and Create, which is related to Gr. ?.]

  1. Government by the best citizens.

  2. A ruling body composed of the best citizens. [Obs.]

    In the Senate Right not our quest in this, I will protest them To all the world, no aristocracy.
    --B. Jonson.

  3. A form a government, in which the supreme power is vested in the principal persons of a state, or in a privileged order; an oligarchy.

    The aristocracy of Venice hath admitted so many abuses, trough the degeneracy of the nobles, that the period of its duration seems approach.

  4. The nobles or chief persons in a state; a privileged class or patrician order; (in a popular use) those who are regarded as superior to the rest of the community, as in rank, fortune, or intellect.

Douglas Harper's Etymology Dictionary

1560s, from Middle French aristocracie (Modern French aristocratie), from Late Latin aristocratia, from Greek aristokratia "government or rule of the best," from aristos "best" (originally "most fitting," from PIE *ar-isto-, superlative form of *ar- "to fit together;" see arm (n.1)) + kratos "rule, power" (see -cracy).\n

\nAt first in a literal sense of "government by those who are the best citizens;" meaning "rule by a privileged class" (best-born or best-favored by fortune) is from 1570s and became paramount 17c. Hence, the meaning "patrician order" (1650s). In early use contrasted with monarchy; after French and American revolutions, with democracy.


n. 1 The nobility, or the hereditary ruling class 2 government by such a class, or a state with such a government 3 A class of people considered (not normally universally) superior to others

  1. n. a privileged class holding hereditary titles [syn: nobility]

  2. the most powerful members of a society [syn: gentry]

Aristocracy (album)

Aristocracy is Ali Project's fifth studio album released on April 25, 2001.

Aristocracy (film)

Aristocracy is a lost 1914 American drama silent film directed by Thomas N. Heffron and written by Bronson Howard. The film stars Tyrone Power, Sr., Marguerite Skirvin, Edna Mayo, Arthur Hoops, Ida Waterman and William Roselle. The film was released on November 26, 1914, by Paramount Pictures.


Aristocracy ( Greek ἀριστοκρατία aristokratía, from ἄριστος aristos "excellent," and κράτος kratos "power") is a form of government that places power in the hands of a small, privileged ruling class. The term derives from the Greek aristokratia, meaning "rule of the best".

At the time of the word's origins in Ancient Greece, the Greeks conceived it as rule by the best qualified citizens—and often contrasted it favourably with monarchy, rule by an individual. In later times, aristocracy was usually seen as rule by a privileged group, the aristocratic class, and was contrasted with democracy.

Aristocracy (class)

Aristocrats is a broad term that usually refers to people that a particular social order considered the highest social class of that society. Specifically, in many states, the aristocracy implied the upper class of people (aristocrats) who typically possess a hereditary rank and specifically titles. In some societies—such as Ancient Greece, Rome, and India—aristocratic status may derive from membership of a military caste, although it has also been very common for aristocrats to belong to priestly dynasties in lieu of this, as is the case in polities all over the continent of Africa. Aristocratic status can involve feudal or legal privileges. They are usually below only the monarch of a country or nation in its social hierarchy. In modern era European societies, the term aristocracy has often been used synonymously with the nobility, a specific class that arose in the middle ages, but the term aristocracy is sometimes also applied to other elites, and is used as a more generic term in reference to earlier and non-European societies.

The term aristocracy derives from the Greek ἀριστοκρατία ( aristokratia ἄριστος (aristos) "excellent," and κράτος (kratos) "power." In most cases, aristocratic titles were and are hereditary.

Usage examples of "aristocracy".

His reason voluntarily consigned her to the aristocracy as a natural appanage: but he did amorously wish that Fortune had made a lord of him.

According to his theories, the elixir would have excellent properties for annihilating the aristocracy and giving the universe to the poor.

Of an arthritic little islander, whose French and African blood had strained its way into the Jamaican aristocracy and MI5 by way of Eton and Oxford.

She supposed it went over well in the junior mess of the Royal Space Service, where the young sprouts of aristocracy and wealth flaunted their boughten commissions in the intervals of leave and training.

Apparently only to substitute the autocracy of a new proletarian aristocracy for the autocracy of the old regime, and the czardom of Lenine and Trotzky for that of the Romanoffs.

The area of the colony was 460,000 square miles, of which area 124,000 square miles were occupied by that singular aristocracy called squatters, men who rent vast tracts of land from Government for the depasturing of their flocks, at an almost nominal sum, subject to a tax of so much a head on their sheep and cattle.

I have ranked feudalism under the head of barbarism, rejected every species of political aristocracy, and represented the English constitution as essentially antagonistic to the American, not as its type.

Claims the thing was found by somebody called Karvur, a count in some feudalistic aristocracy down there.

In the early days, it offered a much more sedate and satisfactory homesite than Washington, so that it became the section of aristocracy, of First Families.

They have appeared in autocracies, aristocracies, theocracies, democracies, and ochlocracies, all alike.

I know your feelings about the aristocracy, Somers, but I will tell you, I think this young man is a fine gentleman and will do everything within his power to make your daughter happy.

But the Baroness had a deep-rooted prejudice in favour of the old aristocracy, and guessed that it would afterwards be counted to her for righteousness if she could be the first to offer boundless sympathy and limited help to the distressed family.

This was a great gain for the aristocracy, since the offenses for which they were usually brought to trial, such as bribery, malversation, and the like, were so commonly practiced by the whole order, that they were, in most cases, nearly certain of acquittal from men who required similar indulgence themselves.

She had been an untamed mestiza of the so-called shopkeeper aristocracy: seductive, rapacious, brazen, with a hunger in her womb that could have satisfied an entire barracks.

This total revolution marked the victory of democracy over aristocracy, parliamentarism over the State, mass over quality, Reason over Faith, equality-ideals over organic hierarchy, of Money over Blood, of Liberalism, pluralism, free capitalism, and criticism over the organic forces of Tradition, State and Authority, and in one word, of Civilization over Culture.