Dictator

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DICTATOR, civil law. A Magistrate at Rome invested with absolute power. His authority over the lives and fortunes of the citizens was without bounds. His office continued but for six months. Hist. de la Jur. h.t.; Dig. l, 2, 18; Id. 1, 1, 1.

References in periodicals archive ?
The other night on CNN I brought the admirable Aaron Brown to a full stop, not, this time, with Franklin but with John Quincy Adams, who said in 1821, on the subject of our fighting to liberate Greece from Turkey, the United States "goes not abroad, in search of monsters to destroy." If the United States took up all foreign affairs, "she might become the dictatress of the world.
If not, Adams was probably right that we might be tempted to become "the dictatress of the world" and no longer "the ruler of [our] own spirit."