from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition
- n. An annually elected magistrate of the ancient Roman Republic, ranking below but having approximately the same functions as a consul.
from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License
- n. The title designating a Roman administrative official whose role changed over time:
- n. A high civic or administrative official, especially a chief magistrate or mayor. Sometimes used as a title.
- n. The title of the chief magistrate, the mayor, and/or the podestà in Palermo, in Verona, and in various other parts of Italy.
Middle English pretor, from Old French, from Latin praetor, perhaps from praeīre, to go before : prae-, pre- + īre, to go; see ei- in Indo-European roots.(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From the Anglo-Norman pretour, pretore, the Middle French preteur (from the Old French pretor; compare the Modern French préteur), and their etymon, the Classical Latin praetor ("leader”, “commander”, “magistrate"); the Latin praetor being contracted from *praeitor ("one who goes before"), from praeeō ("I go before"), from prae ("before") + eō ("I go"); compare the Italian pretore, the Portuguese pretor, and the Spanish pretor. (Wiktionary)