Ar`is*toc"ra*cy (?), n.; pl.
Aristocracies (?). [Gr. ?; ? best + ? to be
strong, to rule, ? strength; ? is perh. from the same root as E.
arm, and orig. meant fitting: cf. F. aristocratie. See
Arm, and Create, which is related to Gr. ?.]
1. Government by the best citizens.
2. A ruling body composed of the best
In the Senate
Right not our quest in this, I will protest them
To all the world, no aristocracy.
3. A form a government, in which the supreme power
is vested in the principal persons of a state, or in a privileged order; an
The aristocracy of Venice hath admitted so many
abuses, trough the degeneracy of the nobles, that the period of its
duration seems approach.
4. The nobles or chief persons in a state; a
privileged class or patrician order; (in a popular use) those who are
regarded as superior to the rest of the community, as in rank, fortune, or