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democracy

Syllabification: de·moc·ra·cy
Pronunciation: /dəˈmäkrəsē
 
/

Definition of democracy in English:

noun (plural democracies)

1A system of government by the whole population or all the eligible members of a state, typically through elected representatives: capitalism and democracy are ascendant in the third world
More example sentences
  • The British system of representative democracy has always abhorred referendums on moral issues.
  • People asserted themselves to save democracy and the parliamentary system was restored.
  • This is their chance to breathe new life into our system of Parliamentary democracy.
Synonyms
representative government, elective government;
self-government, government by the people;
republic, commonwealth
1.1A state governed by a democracy: a multiparty democracy
More example sentences
  • So will our government work with other democracies to dismantle the tax havens?
  • The House of Commons sits for more days and more hours than any other legislature in the large democracies.
  • There can be and have been intolerant democracies and reasonably tolerant autocracies.
1.2Control of an organization or group by the majority of its members: the intended extension of industrial democracy
More example sentences
  • Most importantly, he argues, it lacked any real expansion of democracy or workers' control.
  • Indeed their rulers have tried to eliminate those who stood for genuine workers' control and democracy.
  • Even more important to the majority rule of democracy is how well we safeguard more vulnerable minorities.
1.3The practice or principles of social equality: demands for greater democracy
More example sentences
  • They believed it would uphold the principles of democracy and social equality.
  • Real democracy demands social equality rather than merely the right to vote.
  • Under such conditions, democracy, equality and political rights stood no chance.

Origin

late 16th century: from French démocratie, via late Latin from Greek dēmokratia, from dēmos 'the people' + -kratia 'power, rule'.

More
  • The word democracy came directly from French in the mid 16th century, but goes back to Greek dēmokratia, from dēmos ‘the people’ and kratia ‘power, rule’. Demos is also the source of demagogue (mid 17th century) where it is combined with agōgos ‘leading’, and epidemic (early 17th century) which comes from epidēmia ‘the prevalence of disease’ which goes back to epi ‘upon’ and dēmos ‘the people’.

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