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theocracy

[thee-ok-ruh-see] /θiˈɒk rə si/
noun, plural theocracies.
1.
a form of government in which God or a deity is recognized as the supreme civil ruler, the God's or deity's laws being interpreted by the ecclesiastical authorities.
2.
a system of government by priests claiming a divine commission.
3.
a commonwealth or state under such a form or system of government.
Origin
1615-1625
1615-25; < Greek theokratía. See theo-, -cracy
Related forms
theocratic
[thee-uh-krat-ik] /ˌθi əˈkræt ɪk/ (Show IPA),
theocratical, adjective
theocratically, adverb
nontheocratic, adjective
nontheocratical, adjective
nontheocratically, adverb
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Examples from the web for theocracy
  • It's about borderline theocracy, the legal imposition of the religious dogma of a vocal minority on the rest of us.
  • The more extreme elements of this movement seek conquest and theocracy.
  • The world's only modern theocracy is clearly nervous.
  • Prior to colonial domination, they lived under a highly stratified theocracy.
  • The authoritarianism, fundamentalism, sectarianism and theocracy shall no longer be tolerated.
British Dictionary definitions for theocracy

theocracy

/θɪˈɒkrəsɪ/
noun (pl) -cies
1.
government by a deity or by a priesthood
2.
a community or political unit under such government
Derived Forms
theocrat, noun
theocratic, theocratical, adjective
theocratically, adverb
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for theocracy
n.

1620s, "sacerdotal government under divine inspiration" (as that of Israel before the rise of kings), from Greek theokratia "the rule of God" (Josephus), from theos "god" (see Thea) + kratos "a rule, regime, strength" (see -cracy). Meaning "priestly or religious body wielding political and civil power" is recorded from 1825.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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theocracy in Culture
theocracy [(thee-ok-ruh-see)]

A nation or state in which the clergy exercise political power and in which religious law is dominant over civil law. Iran led by the Ayatollah Khomeini was a theocracy under the Islamic clergy. (See Islam.)

The American Heritage® New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
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theocracy in the Bible

a word first used by Josephus to denote that the Jews were under the direct government of God himself. The nation was in all things subject to the will of their invisible King. All the people were the servants of Jehovah, who ruled over their public and private affairs, communicating to them his will through the medium of the prophets. They were the subjects of a heavenly, not of an earthly, king. They were Jehovah's own subjects, ruled directly by him (comp. 1 Sam. 8:6-9).

Easton's 1897 Bible Dictionary
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19
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