[poh-tes-tahs, -tuh s]

noun (in Roman law)

the authority of a paterfamilias over all members of his family and household.

Origin of potestas

First recorded in 1650–60, potestas is from the Latin word potestās literally, power, control, authority
Related formspo·tes·tal, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for potestas

Historical Examples of potestas