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1. a large amount of money and valuable material possessions
2. the state of being rich
3. Economics all goods and services with monetary, exchangeable, or productive value
Collins Discovery Encyclopedia, 1st edition © HarperCollins Publishers 2005


the value of the resources possessed by an individual or a society (compare CAPITAL).

An important issue in any society is the distribution of wealth within it. Usually, in all but the simplest of societies, the ownership of wealth is unequal, and the degree to which this is so is an important differentiating feature of types of society. In the modern world advanced industrial societies generally manifest less inequality of income than less developed societies, but inequalities in the distribution of wealth remain great, although these are often difficult to quantify, given the tendency of wealth to go often unreported – e.g. at the time of death -because it is subject to taxation.

The massive inequality in wealth which exists between societies – especially between FIRST and THIRD WORLD societies – is, of course, also a major feature distinguishing between nation states in the modern WORLD SYSTEM, and a major aspect of the potential economic and political instability of this system.

Collins Dictionary of Sociology, 3rd ed. © HarperCollins Publishers 2000


See also Luxury, Treasure.
Weaving (See SEWING and WEAVING.)
Abu Dhabi
Persian Gulf sheikdom overflowing with petrodollars. [Mid-East Hist.: NCE, 9]
Big Daddy
wealthy Mississippi landowner of humble origins. [Am. Lit.: Cat on a Hot Tin Roof]
black and gold
symbol of financial prosperity. [Heraldry: Jobes, 222]
traditional symbol of wealth. [Plant Symbolism: Flora Symbolica, 167]
Cave of Mammon
abode of god of riches. [Br. Lit.: Faerie Queene]
ancient Greek city; one of wealthiest and most powerful. [Gk. Hist. and Myth.: Zimmerman, 69]
Lydian king; name became synonymous with riches. [Gk. Myth.: Kravitz, 69]
rich man who ignored poor man’s plight; sent to Hell. [N.T.: Luke 16:19–31]
world’s richest man in classical times. [Gk. Myth.: Kravitz, 91]
Fortunatus’ purse
luckless man receives gift of inexhaustible purse. [Ital. Fairy Tale: LLEI, I: 286]
16th-century German financiers. [Ger. Hist.: NCE, 1023–1024]
Hughes, Howard
(1905–1976) eccentric millionaire; lived as recluse. [Am. Hist.: NCE, 1284]
Phrygian king; whatever he touched became gold. [Gk. and Rom. Myth.: Wheeler, 24]
god of wealth: blind (indiscriminate); lame (slow to accumulate); and winged (quick to disappear). [Gk. Lit.: Plutus]
Rockefeller, John D(avison)
(1839–1937) oil magnate; name has become synonymous with “rich.” [Am. Hist.: Jameson, 431]
fabulous riches garnered from gifts and tolls. [O.T.: I Kings 10:14–25]
rich Athenian; ruined by his prodigal generosity to friends. [Br. Lit.: Timon of Athens]
seeing turquoise after a new moon brings wealth. [Gem Symbolism: Kunz, 345]
Warbucks, Daddy
adventurous soldier of fortune and richest man in world. [Comics: “Little Orphan Annie” in Horn, 459]
wheat stalk
traditional symbol of wealth. [Flower Symbolism: Flora Symbolica, 178]
Allusions—Cultural, Literary, Biblical, and Historical: A Thematic Dictionary. Copyright 2008 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
References in periodicals archive ?
Smith said: "You can't get anyone better than Leighton and while Affluence is not as good as Arch My Boy, he's not far off him.
The results support the findings of several researchers who have contested the positive link between environmentalism and economic affluence (e.g.
During 2012--2017, even though cereals are expected to maintain their dominant position among food items, it said due to rising affluence consumption of protein rich and high value products such as a meat and fruits are slated to increase.
Professor Majid Ezzati, from the School of Public Health at Imperial College London, who led the research, said: "This study shows that non-communicable diseases are no longer 'diseases of affluence'.
Affluence is taken here to mean abounding in the provision of goods and services beyond those necessary to maintain a basic standard of living.
Changing demographics, focus on service quality and increasing affluence in Asia/Pacific continues to drive shared services and BPO adoption, especially in Australia, India, Southeast Asia and China.
Toxic wealth; how the culture of affluence can harm us and our children.
In The Challenge of Affluence, Avner Offer explores the "paradox of affluence"--why "the flow of new goods can undermine the capacity to enjoy them." [p.
Affluence has often been cited as a key reason behind a change in motivation (generally for the better) and behavior toward others (generally for the worse), because affluence enables people to achieve goals without help from others, making people feel self-sufficient and causing them to behave accordingly (Vohs, Mead, & Goode, 2007).
The "affluence tasters" will show the unemployed what they could afford if they earned a working wage.
This level of tourism is a product of affluence - not only in the United States, but globally.
RISING Eastern affluence will hit revellers with sophisticated tastes very hard this Christmas.