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[proh-kon-suh l] /proʊˈkɒn səl/
Roman History. an official, usually a former consul, who acted as governor or military commander of a province, and who had powers similar to those of a consul.
any appointed administrator over a dependency or an occupied area.
Origin of proconsul
1350-1400; Middle English < Latin prōconsul; see pro-1, consul
Related forms
proconsular, adjective
proconsularly, adverb Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for proconsular
Historical Examples
  • Nobody remains longer than that on a first proconsular appointment.

    A Slave is a Slave Henry Beam Piper
  • He went to Africa with proconsular authority, and of course fleeced the Africans.

    Life of Cicero Anthony Trollope
  • Then, heralded by an obsequious guard, came a great man, proconsular in mien and gait.

    Hyacinth George A. Birmingham
  • A legate being appointed by the emperor over the conquered countries, Britain became a proconsular province.

  • This was Obray of Erskyll's first proconsular appointment, it was due to family influence, and it was a mistake.

    A Slave is a Slave Henry Beam Piper
  • Finding a suitable building for the proconsular Palace would present difficulties.

    A Slave is a Slave Henry Beam Piper
  • Vann Shatrak, who was now commanding his battle-line unit by screen from the proconsular Palace, began fretting.

    A Slave is a Slave Henry Beam Piper
  • For if you say that you committed no such deeds, we simply read to you the records of the proconsular province and the state.

  • The Consuls remained at home, and Generals were sent out with proconsular authority.

    Life of Cicero Anthony Trollope
  • The country was presented by the Romans to Eumenes, and subsequently formed part of the proconsular province of Asia.

British Dictionary definitions for proconsular


an administrator or governor of a colony, occupied territory, or other dependency
(in ancient Rome) the governor of a senatorial province
Derived Forms
proconsular (prəʊˈkɒnsjʊlə) adjective
proconsulate, proconsulship, noun
Word Origin
C14: from Latin, from prō consule (someone acting) for the consul. See pro-², consul
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 proconsular



late 14c., "governor or military commander of an ancient Roman province," from Latin proconsul "governor of a province; military commander," from phrase pro consule "(acting) in place of a consul," from pro- "in place of" (see pro-) + ablative of consul. In modern use usually rhetorical, but it was a title of certain commissioners in the French Revolution, was used in English for "deputy consul," and was used again of U.S. administrators in Iraq during the occupation. Related: Proconsular.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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