patrician


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patrician

(pətrĭsh`ən), member of the privileged class of ancient Rome. Two distinct classes appear to have come into being at the beginning of the republic. Only the patricians held public office, whether civil or religious. From the 4th cent. B.C. the plebeians struggled constantly for political equality until, by the 3d cent. B.C., the only offices reserved to the patricians were the civil office of interrex and some priestly offices. The increasing number of plebs in office together with patricians gave rise to the nobiles, an aristocracy of ruling families of both classes. Caesar and Augustus promoted plebeians to the patrician class. External marks of a patrician were a distinctive tunic and a shoe adorned with an ivory crescent.

patrician

1. a member of the hereditary aristocracy of ancient Rome. In the early republic the patricians held almost all the higher offices
2. a high nonhereditary title awarded by Constantine and his eastern Roman successors for services to the empire
3. in medieval Europe
a. a title borne by numerous princes including several emperors from the 8th to the 12th centuries
b. a member of the upper class in numerous Italian republics and German free cities
4. (esp in ancient Rome) of, relating to, or composed of patricians
References in periodicals archive ?
Jim Patrician of Algonquin and Jonathan Radke of Carpentersville are seeking the Republican nomination for the Kane County Board District 23 seat, which covers parts of Algonquin and Carpentersville.
Drawing on critical studies of early modern masculinity, Quaintance examines how the textual trafficking of women's bodies, particularly within the circle of writers affiliated with Venetian patrician and poet Domenico Venier (whose entourage included eminent literary figures, including Torquato Tasso and Pietro Aretino), both upheld and resisted gender norms in sixteenth-century Venice, during a period when the boundaries separating puttane, meretrici, and cortigiane remained unclear.
Patrician Families and the Making of Quebec: The Taschereaus and McCords, by Brian Young.
The proofs were assessed by the Avogaria di Comune, a kind of supreme court of patrician lawyers appointed by the Council of Ten.
One of the top three is the Gateway area land on which the Patrician, a mobile home park for people 55 and older, sits.
Patrician Diamonds is an option partner with Triex Minerals, which found a large uranium anomaly on the Patrician Diamonds' 18,000 acre Dismal Lake property in Nunavut.
The old stone church and bellcote still dominate in a patrician way, with the parsonage buildings as a separate entity.
Michael's outstanding reading of this top-flight adventure book is even and clear, and he has an excellent patrician voice for Theodore Roosevelt.
Throughout, Kirstein remains patrician, cranky, and intoxicatingly judgmental.
Treading carefully in the minefield of local politics, where a false step could be fatal to both the orphanage and its personnel, Jenkins obtained some funds from patrician Southerners, as well as support from black churches.
After all, the saucy maid betrothed to the opera's eponymous protagonist isn't exactly her metier - her patrician good looks and especially her manner suggest she'd make an ideal Countess, the opera's other female lead.