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[per-ee-ee-sahy] /ˌpɛr iˈi saɪ/
plural noun, singular Perioecus
[per-ee-ee-kuh s] /ˌpɛr iˈi kəs/ (Show IPA)
the inhabitants of ancient Laconia, constituting a dependent people of Sparta, who governed themselves and had a monopoly on trade and manufacture.
Compare Helot (def 1), Spartiate.
Origin of Perioeci
1585-95; < Medieval Latin perioecī < Greek períoikoi countryside dwellers, noun use of plural of períoikos neighboring, equivalent to peri- peri- + -oikos, adj. derivative of oîkos house
Related forms
perioecic, perioecid, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for Perioeci
Historical Examples
  • They had much the same position as the Perioeci in ancient Sparta.

  • Besides the Helots, the Spartans exercised an authority over the intermediate class called the Perioeci.

  • The whole number taken, whether true-born Spartans or Perioeci, amounted to more than one hundred.

    Hellenica Xenophon
  • The provinces under Spartan rule were divided into thirty thousand parts, a part for each Perioeci family.

    History of Education Levi Seeley

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