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 (tĕt′rärk′, tē′trärk′)
a. A subordinate ruler.
b. One of four joint rulers.
2. A governor of one of four divisions of a country or province, especially in the ancient Roman Empire.
3. The commander of a subdivision of a phalanx in ancient Greece.

[Middle English tetrarche, a Roman tetrarch, from Old French, from Late Latin tetrarcha, from Latin tetrarchēs, from Greek tetrarkhēs : tetra-, tetra- + -arkhēs, -arch.]

te·trar′chic (tĕ-trär′kĭk, tē-) adj.
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.


1. (Government, Politics & Diplomacy) the ruler of one fourth of a country
2. (Historical Terms) a subordinate ruler, esp of Syria under the Roman Empire
3. (Historical Terms) the commander of one of the smaller subdivisions of a Macedonian phalanx
4. (Government, Politics & Diplomacy) any of four joint rulers
[C14: from Greek tetrarkhēs; see tetra-, -arch]
tetrarchate n
teˈtrarchic, teˈtrarchical adj
ˈtetrarchy n
Collins English Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged, 12th Edition 2014 © HarperCollins Publishers 1991, 1994, 1998, 2000, 2003, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2011, 2014


(ˈtɛ trɑrk, ˈti-)

1. the ruler of a fourth part, division, etc., as of a country or province in the Roman Empire.
2. a subordinate ruler or minor king, esp. in W Asia under the Roman Empire.
3. one of four joint rulers or chiefs.
[1350–1400; Middle English tetrarcha, tetrarke < Late Latin tetrarcha, Latin tetrarchēs < Greek tetrárchēs. See tetra-, -arch]
te′trar•chy, te′trarch•ate` (-ˌkeɪt) n.
te•trar′chic, te•trar′chi•cal, adj.
Random House Kernerman Webster's College Dictionary, © 2010 K Dictionaries Ltd. Copyright 2005, 1997, 1991 by Random House, Inc. All rights reserved.
References in periodicals archive ?
(29) The subject of why the old pantheons were ultimately discarded for a new belief system focused on a single God relates to a number of factors: the influence on the Tetrarchic, and following, Empire of, then, Asiatic/oriental religions more focused on single deities, the fact that a lone Emperor inheres to the belief and allegiance to a single God, and the most compelling factor being that bringing all peoples under a single God under the authority of the Empire tends to more order and stability, hallmarks for what would become state sovereignty.
Eight papers by scholars of theology, history, and classics ponder one of the most traumatic experiences of the early church, the Great Persecution begun by the emperor Diocletian and his tetrarchic colleagues in AD 303, just when Christians had relaxed into a long respite from official persecution.
Augustus is all these contradicting roles in a single statue," to the Byzantine "tetrarchic" models that combined heroic, Christian and secular attributes as separate, but cognate images, often occupying the same space.
(21) As Elsner's Tetrarchic model indicates, antique models of representation can also codify different identities in simultaneity.
Where previous scholarship has looked to this document as evidence of either waffling or ambiguity in Constantine's religious policies, Van Dam examines the text in terms of Constantine's efforts to replace the Tetrarchic model of collegial imperial succession with a return to a dynastic system.
The Tiberian floor deposit, the cellar fill, and the Tetrarchic pit in the Peribolos of Apollo are examples of such deposits.
"Tetrarchic Recovery in Corinth: Pottery, Lamps, and Other Finds from the Peribolos of Apollo," Hesperia 63, pp.
Consideration of Tetrarchic portraiture has usually focused on the extant porphyry sculptures (plates 2, 6, 7, 9, and 10).
Despite the fact that many details from the Arch of Galerius in Salonica have been eroded, more remains of the Arch than of any other Tetrarchic monument.(4) The Arch formed part of the Emperor's palace complex there.
Group identity, in fact, provides the key to much Tetrarchic art.