• synonyms


  1. a supporter of legitimate authority, especially of a claim to a throne based on direct descent.
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  1. Also le·git·i·mis·tic. of, relating to, or supporting legitimate authority.
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Origin of legitimist

1835–45; < Latin lēgitim(us) lawful (see legitim) + -ist, modeled on French légitimiste
Related formsle·git·i·mism, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for legitimism

Historical Examples

  • The apologists affixed a species of legitimism, a pretension that the Church had always from the first saluted the emperor.

    English Conferences of Ernest Renan

    Ernest Renan

  • In literature the tendency appears as romanticism, in politics as legitimism, in religion as ultramontanism.

  • Rightly envisaged, the Crimean war was the end of what remained of absolutism and legitimism in Europe.

  • Its aim was to vindicate the vested interests of Legitimism against the doctrines of the French Revolution.

British Dictionary definitions for legitimism


  1. a monarchist who supports the rule of a legitimate dynasty or of its senior branch
  2. (formerly) a supporter of the elder line of the Bourbon family in France
  3. a supporter of legitimate authority
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adjective Also: legitimistic
  1. of or relating to legitimists
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Derived Formslegitimism, noun
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 legitimism


1877, from French légitimisme; see legitimate (adj.) + -ism.

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1841, from French légitimiste, from légitime (see legitimate).

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper