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7 Essential Words of Fall

fourth estate

noun, (often initial capital letters)
1.
the journalistic profession or its members; the press.
2.
a group other than the usual powers, as the three estates of France, that wields influence in the politics of a country.
Origin
1830-1840
1830-40
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Examples from the web for fourth estate
  • Journalism ethics reside in publications and more broadly within the idea of the fourth estate.
  • Neither is a model anyone with a desire to preserve the fourth estate should strive to emulate.
  • Most folks tend to side with the fourth estate and do not take into account their slapdash work.
  • At the center of the social construction and interpretation of education sits the fourth estate.
British Dictionary definitions for fourth estate

fourth estate

noun
1.
(sometimes capitals) journalists or their profession; the press See estate (sense 4)
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 fourth estate
n.

"the press," by 1824, and especially from 1831, British English. For the other three, see estate. Earlier the term had been applied in various senses that did not stick, including "the mob" (1752), "the lawyers" (1825). The extension to the press is perhaps an outgrowth of the former.

Hence, through the light of letters and the liberty of the press, public opinion has risen to the rank of a fourth estate in our constitution; in times of quiet and order, silent and still, but in the collisions of the different branches of our government, deciding as an umpire with unbounded authority. ["Memoir of James Currie, M.D.," 1831]



[Newspapers] began to assume some degree of political importance, during the civil wars of the seventeenth century, in England; but it is not until within the last fifty years that they have become, -- as they are now justly styled, -- a Fourth Estate, exercising a more powerful influence on the public affairs of the countries in which they are permitted to circulate freely, than the other three put together. [Alexander H. Everett, "Address to the Phi Beta Kappa Society of Bowdoin College," 1834]

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Word Value for fourth

12
12
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