Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • noun Nobility or aristocracy.
  • noun The rank, position, or term of office of a patrician.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • noun The dignity or position of a patrician, in any sense of that word.
  • noun Patricians collectively; the patrician order; the aristocracy.
  • noun The period during which the holder enjoyed the dignity of patrician.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • noun The patrician class; the aristocracy; also, the office of patriarch.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • noun The rank of a patrician
  • noun The aristocracy or nobility

Etymologies

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

[Latin patriciātus, from patricius, patrician; see patrician.]

Examples

  • No one, not even Mrs. Astor, could have turned this tinsel patriciate into a first-rate one.

    The Aristocracy and Its Discontents

  • The Good Shepherd: Robert De Niro's movie (skillfully written by Eric Roth) is a very persuasive and thoughtful study of how the youthful and more muscular scions of the Wasp patriciate imposed their values, their sense of entitlement, on the US and what that endeavor cost us - and the patricians ....

    GreenCine Daily: Shorts, 12/12.

  • The merchant patriciate of New York, with its faux English standards, gave no quarter; and although the New York ladies condescended to give a reception for Mrs. Lincoln, eventhis exercise in social charity was not quite free from malice, for Mrs. August Belmont, the grande doyenne of New York society, did not appear.

    FORGE OF EMPIRES 1861-1871

  • The merchant patriciate of New York, with its faux English standards, gave no quarter; and although the New York ladies condescended to give a reception for Mrs. Lincoln, eventhis exercise in social charity was not quite free from malice, for Mrs. August Belmont, the grande doyenne of New York society, did not appear.

    FORGE OF EMPIRES 1861-1871

  • The merchant patriciate of New York, with its faux English standards, gave no quarter; and although the New York ladies condescended to give a reception for Mrs. Lincoln, eventhis exercise in social charity was not quite free from malice, for Mrs. August Belmont, the grande doyenne of New York society, did not appear.

    FORGE OF EMPIRES 1861-1871

  • The merchant patriciate of New York, with its faux English standards, gave no quarter; and although the New York ladies condescended to give a reception for Mrs. Lincoln, eventhis exercise in social charity was not quite free from malice, for Mrs. August Belmont, the grande doyenne of New York society, did not appear.

    FORGE OF EMPIRES 1861-1871

  • The merchant patriciate of New York, with its faux English standards, gave no quarter; and although the New York ladies condescended to give a reception for Mrs. Lincoln, eventhis exercise in social charity was not quite free from malice, for Mrs. August Belmont, the grande doyenne of New York society, did not appear.

    FORGE OF EMPIRES 1861-1871

  • The trade that had created Venice's empire and sustained it for half a millennium had been abandoned to Greeks, Jews, and smaller families as the patriciate collected its rents.

    Asimov's Science Fiction

  • Osmond had a high appreciation of this particular patriciate; not so much for its distinction, which he thought easily surpassable, as for its solid actuality.

    The Portrait of a Lady

  • But at first it took on no constant form, because, by not abolishing the patriciate, it left half its work undone.

    The Social Contract

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