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patrimony

[pa-truh-moh-nee]
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noun, plural pat·ri·mo·nies.
  1. an estate inherited from one's father or ancestors.
  2. any quality, characteristic, etc., that is inherited; heritage.
  3. the aggregate of one's property.
  4. the estate or endowment of a church, religious house, etc.
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Origin of patrimony

1300–50; Middle English patrimonie < Middle French < Latin patrimōnium. See patri-, -mony
Related formspat·ri·mo·ni·al, adjectivepat·ri·mo·ni·al·ly, adverb

Synonyms

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1. inheritance.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for patrimony

Contemporary Examples

Historical Examples

  • One of them, the former probably, was the patrimony of Llywarch Hen.

    Y Gododin

    Aneurin

  • Still, fate can rob us of our patrimony, she replied, after a pause.

    The Fifth String  

    John Philip Sousa

  • “Of that patrimony I now have thirteen cents left,” Don continued.

    The Wall Street Girl

    Frederick Orin Bartlett

  • But I have lost all my patrimony, and I will accept nothing.

  • Within a day or so he came to consult me about a mortgage on his patrimony.

    'Charge It'

    Irving Bacheller


British Dictionary definitions for patrimony

patrimony

noun plural -nies
  1. an inheritance from one's father or other ancestor
  2. the endowment of a church
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Derived Formspatrimonial (ˌpætrɪˈməʊnɪəl), adjectivepatrimonially, adverb

Word Origin

C14 patrimoyne, from Old French, from Latin patrimonium paternal inheritance
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

Word Origin and History for patrimony

n.

mid-14c., "property of the Church," also "spiritual legacy of Christ," from Old French patremoine "heritage, patrimony" (12c.) and directly from Latin patrimonium "a paternal estate, inheritance from a father," also figurative, from pater (genitive patris) "father" (see father (n.)) + -monium, suffix signifying action, state, condition. Meaning "property inherited from a father or ancestors" is attested from late 14c. Figurative sense of "immaterial things handed down from the past" is from 1580s. A curious sense contrast to matrimony.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper