A Dictionary of the English Language
                        A Digital Edition of the 1755 Classic by Samuel Johnson
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Oligarchy

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View Scan · View Transcription · from page 1399

Oligárchy. n.s. [ὀλιγαρχία.] A form of government which places the supreme power in a small number; aristocracy.

The worst kind of oligarchy, is, when men are governed indeed by a few, and yet are not taught to know what those few be, to whom they should obey. Sidney, b. ii.

We have no aristocracies but in contemplation, all oligarchies, wherein a few men domineer, do what they list. Burt.

After the expedition into Sicily, the Athenians chose four hundred men for administration of affairs, who became a body of tyrants, and were called an oligarchy, or tyranny of the few; under which hateful denomination they were soon after deposed. Swift.

Sources: Burton, Robert (5) · Sidney, Philip (140) · Swift, Jonathan (306)

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Cite this page: Johnson, Samuel. "Oligarchy." A Dictionary of the English Language: A Digital Edition of the 1755 Classic by Samuel Johnson. Edited by Brandi Besalke. Last modified: June 3, 2012. http://johnsonsdictionaryonline.com/?p=9655.


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