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How to pronounce aristocracy (audio)

Dictionary definition of 'aristocracy'

A privileged class of people, typically comprising of noble birth holding hereditary titles and offices.
"The aristocracy held most of the political power in the country."

Detailed meaning of 'aristocracy'

"Aristocracy" is a social class or form of government in which a small group of people, who are typically of noble birth or high social status, hold the most power and privilege. The term is derived from the Greek word "aristokratia," which means "rule of the best." Historically, this class of people were the landowners and nobles, who held the most wealth, power and influence in a society. They were often the ones who held political and military power, and their privileges were often protected by law. In some societies, the aristocracy was a hereditary class, meaning that one's position in the aristocracy was passed down through their family. In other societies, the aristocracy was based on wealth or military power. Today, the term is used more broadly to describe any group of people who hold significant power and privilege in a society, regardless of their birth or social status.

History and etymology of 'aristocracy'

The noun 'aristocracy' has its roots in ancient Greek. It is derived from the Greek words 'aristos,' meaning 'best' or 'excellent,' and 'kratos,' meaning 'rule' or 'power.' In essence, 'aristocracy' etymologically means 'rule by the best' or 'government by the elite.' In the historical context, it referred to a privileged and often hereditary class of individuals who were considered the best or most virtuous members of society, typically comprising those of noble birth with hereditary titles and offices. This term reflects the idea that such a social class was believed to possess the qualities and virtues that made them the most suitable to govern and lead. Over time, the meaning of 'aristocracy' has broadened to encompass various forms of privileged or elite groups, not necessarily limited to those of noble birth, but still characterized by their elevated social status and influence.

Example sentences containing 'aristocracy'

1. The aristocracy's influence began to wane in the modern era.
2. Wealth and privilege defined the aristocracy's way of life.
3. The aristocracy's traditions were deeply rooted in history.
4. The aristocracy's decline led to a more egalitarian society.
5. The aristocracy's mansions showcased their affluence.
6. Aristocracy often came with obligations to serve the monarchy.
7. The aristocracy's downfall sparked debates on class equality.
8. The aristocracy's customs were marked by formality.
9. Aristocracy's power was challenged by emerging middle classes.
10. The aristocracy's titles were often hereditary.
11. The aristocracy's exclusivity bred resentment among the masses.
12. The aristocracy's lavish parties were legendary.
13. The decline of the aristocracy shifted the balance of power.
14. The aristocracy's influence persisted despite changing times.
15. He was a member of the aristocracy and held a title of nobility.
16. The aristocracy was a powerful and influential class in the society.
17. The aristocracy enjoyed a life of privilege and luxury.
18. The aristocracy was opposed to the rise of democracy.
19. The aristocracy's privileges and wealth were inherited from their ancestors.
20. The aristocracy had a strong influence on the culture and arts of the society.
21. He was a descendant of the aristocracy and inherited a large fortune.
22. The aristocracy's power began to decline during the French Revolution.
23. The aristocracy controlled most of the land and resources in the country.
24. The aristocracy was known for their extravagant lifestyles and lavish parties.
25. The aristocracy's privileges were abolished by the new government after the revolution.
26. He incentivised prominent aristocracy to join his company boards so to impress potential investors.



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