noun, plural aus·pi·ces [aw-spuh-seez] /ˈɔ spəˌsiz/.

an augur of ancient Rome.

Origin of auspex

1590–1600; < Latin: one who observes birds, soothsayer, diviner, equivalent to au-, base of avis bird + -spex watcher (spec-, stem of specere to look at) + -s nominative singular suffix



noun, plural aus·pic·es [aw-spuh-siz] /ˈɔ spə sɪz/.

Usually auspices. patronage; support; sponsorship: under the auspices of the Department of Education.
Often auspices. a favorable sign or propitious circumstance.
a divination or prognostication, originally from observing birds.

Origin of auspice

1525–35; < French < Latin auspicium a bird-watching, divination from flight of birds, equivalent to auspic- (stem of auspex) + -ium -ium Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for auspices

Contemporary Examples of auspices

Historical Examples of auspices

  • Having got the promise of them from Agesilaus, he proceeded to take the auspices.



  • It will be an advantage to him, in a way, to have sung under the auspices of our committee.

    The Dominant Strain

    Anna Chapin Ray

  • Do we not serve under Aemilius Paullus and his Illyrian auspices?

    The Lion's Brood

    Duffield Osborne

  • They starved, or they performed or exhibited 'under the auspices of.'

  • The auspices ceased to be taken at marriages from the time of Cicero.


    William Graham Sumner

British Dictionary definitions for auspices


noun plural auspices (ˈɔːspɪˌsiːz)

Roman history another word for augur (def. 1)

Word Origin for auspex

C16: from Latin: observer of birds, from avis bird + specere to look


noun plural -pices (-pɪsɪz)

(usually plural) patronage or guidance (esp in the phrase under the auspices of)
(often plural) a sign or omen, esp one that is favourable

Word Origin for auspice

C16: from Latin auspicium augury from birds; see auspex
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 auspices

plural (and now the usual form) of auspice; 1530s, "observation of birds for the purpose of taking omens," from French auspice (14c.), from Latin auspicum "function of an auspex" (q.v.). Meaning "any indication of the future (especially favorable)" is from 1650s; earlier (1630s) in extended sense of "benevolent influence of greater power, influence exerted on behalf of someone or something," originally in expression under the auspices of.



1590s, "one who observes flights of birds for the purpose of taking omens," from Latin auspex "interpreter of omens given by birds," from PIE *awi-spek- "observer of birds," from *awi- "bird" (see aviary) + *spek- "to see" (see scope (n.1)). Connection between birds and omens also is in Greek oionos "bird of prey, bird of omen, omen," and ornis "bird," which also could mean "omen."

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper