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praetorianism

[pree-tawr-ee-uh-niz-uh m, -tohr-]
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noun
  1. the control of a society by force or fraud, especially when exercised through titular officials and by a powerful minority.
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Origin of praetorianism

First recorded in 1865–70; praetorian + -ism
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for praetorianism

Historical Examples

  • The evil fame of the Italian cohorts has survived in the phrase “praetorianism” used to imply a venal military despotism.

    Encyclopaedia Britannica, 11th Edition, Volume 2, Slice 6

    Various

  • If an autocracy does not rest on the army, which leads to the chaos of praetorianism, it must rely on 'panem et circenses.'

    Outspoken Essays

    William Ralph Inge