Word of the Day

Wednesday, March 10, 2004

patrician

\puh-TRISH-un\ , noun;
1.
A member of one of the original citizen families of ancient Rome.
2.
A person of high birth; a nobleman.
3.
A person of refined upbringing, manners, and taste.
adjective:
1.
Of or pertaining to the patrician families of ancient Rome.
2.
Of, pertaining to, or appropriate to, a person of high birth; noble; not plebeian.
3.
Befitting or characteristic of refined upbringing, manners, and taste.
Quotes:
London possessed the manner of a patrician. He was a man whose stately elegance suggested that he deemed himself above the fray.
-- Martin Garbus, Tough Talk
In Senator Harrison G. Otis's words, King was the "last of the Romans," or those patrician Federalists who hoped to model the American Senate upon the aristocratic body of the Roman Republic and to keep the plebeian House in check.
-- Joseph Martin Hernon, Profiles in Character
A neutral observer could not have said whether the handsome gentleman with the black satin eye patch over his left eye, and the meticulously trimmed salt-and-pepper goatee, and the jaunty straw hat, and the air of patrician confidence, was betraying now and then a just-perceptible apprehension, or whether, like numerous others, quite naturally in these heightened circumstances, he is merely anticipating the contest to come.
-- Joyce Carol Oates, My Heart Laid Bare
I stuck up for patrician values, incarnate, as I imagined, in the professional class I issued from, exemplified by my grandfather.
-- David Laskin, Partisans
Origin:
Patrician derives from Latin patricius, from patres, "senators," plural of pater, "father."
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