from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • adj. Ostensibly equal, but in reality more privileged.


Originated by George Orwell in the 1945 quotation, below. (Wiktionary)


  • 113 He maintained a more equal intercourse with the caliph Harun al Rashid, 114 whose dominion stretched from Africa to India, and accepted from his ambassadors a tent, a water-clock, an elephant, and the keys of the Holy Sepulchre.

    The History of the Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire

  • In the celebrated description of the swiftness of Camilla in the VIIth Aeneid, which Virgil has laboured with so much industry, Dryden is more equal to Pitt than in the foregoing instances, tho 'we think even in this he falls short of him.

    The Lives of the Poets of Great Britain and Ireland

  • At Portray no man was more voluble, no man more self-confident, no man more equal to his daily occupations than Andy Gowran; but the unaccustomed clothes, and the journey to London, and the town houses overcame him, and for a while almost silenced him.

    The Eustace Diamonds

  • Giovanni di Bicci de 'Medici, to bring about a more equal distribution of taxation, propose the catasto, i.e. an income-tax.

    The Catholic Encyclopedia, Volume 6: Fathers of the Church-Gregory XI

  • Usually an appellation granted giant pandas, blue whales, or Asian elephants, here on The Farm the ducks are our charismatic megafauna, and so, more equal than others; thanks to Heath, long ago the ducks’ death sentence had been commuted.


  • It was impossible to possess a more equal and pleasing vivacity, or more real and unaffected gracefulness, more natural talents, or cultivated with greater taste; join to all these good qualities an affectionate heart, but loving rather too diffusively, and bestowing his favors with too little caution; serving his friends with zeal, or rather making himself the friend of every one he could serve, yet contriving very dexterously to manage his own affairs, while warmly pursuing the interests of others.

    The Confessions of J J Rousseau


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