One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
1An official in ancient Rome chosen by the plebeians to protect their interests.
- ‘Severe penalties were to be inflicted on those harming the tribunes or other plebeian officers.’
- ‘Elected tribune in 123, Gaius wanted to transform Rome into a democracy along Hellenic lines.’
- ‘Frustrated there, he ran for tribune of the people and was elected for 133.’
- ‘As tribune, Gaius reaffirmed Tiberius' Land Act and saw to it that it was finally implemented.’
- ‘The Roman crowd, initially siding with Caesar, has been redirected by its tribunes to oppose his theatrical coronation, just as the plebeians will be swayed by Brutus and Antony in turn in the forum.’
- ‘When Caesar was a praetor, he supported a tribune who wanted Pompey recalled to restore order in Rome.’
- ‘The revolutionary is an ever-present backdrop to this production; the war with the Volscians is to prevent the corn revolution and the plebeians are incited to revolution by the tribunes after the battle.’
- ‘Instead of being fearful and demoralized by Martius' attack on Rome, for example, the tribunes organize the plebs into a defense force so fearsome that Martius withdraws of his own accord.’
- ‘As tribune in 49 he defended Caesar's interest in the Senate as civil war loomed.’
- ‘The Romans solved this problem in a typical way: by a foedus, or treaty, which allowed the plebeians to have office-holders of their own, called tribunes of the plebeians.’
- 1.1 A Roman legionary officer.
- ‘John 18 implies that a Roman tribune (or maybe even Pilate, but there is no evidence for this) ordered part of his cohort to accompany the chief priests and the Pharisees in arresting Jesus on Thursday.’
- ‘He was a tribune (which possibly equates to colonel) in the Roman army during the reign of the Emperor Diocletian.’
- ‘An inscription on one of the dishes shows Marcellianus to have been a tribune - a unit commander or staff officer.’
- ‘Each legion was commanded by a legate supported by a senior tribune, Roman aristocrats whose career included a range of both civilian and military tasks and who served with a legion for a few years.’
- ‘The body has disappeared and the Roman tribune in Jerusalem wants to know what is going on.’
- 1.2 A popular leader; a champion of people's rights.
- ‘James Madison is known as the tribune of open government and the philosophical father of the Freedom of Information Act.’
- ‘We have not fallen from grace or lost all sense of decency, as some disgruntled tribunes of the people would have you believe.’
- ‘A small-town and rural press persisted and neighborhood and suburban newspapers sprang up, generally serving more as community cheerleaders than as community tribunes.’
- ‘And as the stock market continued to climb, he found his next niche: tribune of the New Economy.’
- ‘He was the antithesis of the ‘governmental’ socialist: in revolt against the taxman, the big banks, the judicial system, a tribune of the people emerging from a classic Left in deep trouble.’
- ‘As I watched, it wasn't a grudging respect for the perfectly tailored and coiffed tribune of the masses that filled me, but a wave of nausea.’
- ‘The community's loud tribunes would have cited him for contempt, for failure to stage ‘our stories.’’
- ‘His great wealth came from Jamaican estates and he was frequently reminded, when tribune of the people, that he was a slave-owner.’
- ‘In a world at peril, socialists need to be intransigent tribunes of the poor - fighting for universal, free access to lifeline vaccines, anti-virals and antibiotics.’
- ‘Thomas Maier, author of a well documented history of the clan, called him, ‘a tribune for the underclass’, and he was that.’
- ‘The great tribune of the people lost the confidence of his constituency party.’
- ‘Edwards, on the other hand, is pitching himself as the tribune for the forgotten Middle Americans who will protect their tax cuts.’
- ‘During the American Revolution the words of pamphleteers such as Thomas Paine established the press as the people's tribune.’
- ‘Immigrants come to the United States because they ache to live as they choose, to pursue their own purposes, and we remain the world's foremost tribune of freedom and opportunity.’
- ‘One should keep in mind that Tantan is anything but a tribune of popular democracy.’
- ‘And Abraham Lincoln would still be viewed as a tribune of the people regardless of whether he helped the Jeffersons perform.’
Late Middle English: from Latin tribunus, literally ‘head of a tribe’, from tribus ‘tribe’.
1An apse in a basilica.
- ‘The Main Tribune (or apse) holds the Cathedra Petri (St Peter's Throne), with the Monument to Paul III (left) and Urban VIII (right).’
- ‘However the view of the tribune of S. Maria Maggiore was already shown in plate 122.’
2A dais or rostrum, especially in a church.
- ‘In a section of the programme on the club's rich heritage, Luftwaffe (air force) chief Goering is pictured sitting on the club's honorary tribune, with uniformed Nazi officers behind him.’
- ‘To complicate matters further, the David was moved to the specially constructed tribune of the Galleria dell'Accademia, a national museum, in 1874.’
- ‘In life the king and his family could watch the liturgy from the tribune above, and in death their tombs occupied the Pantheon itself.’
- ‘This is not to deny that socialists can use parliament as a tribune from which radical ideas can be put across to help build workers' confidence.’
- ‘Continuing to boom radicalism from the tribune of the Assembly, he had offered the king and queen his secret services as an adviser.’
- ‘From 1922 his stylistically radical work was put to utilitarian ends, including the design of speakers' tribunes and latterly agitprop photomontage and graphic design.’
- 2.1 A raised area or gallery with seats, especially in a church.
- ‘For evidence of painted and vaulted porticoes, with a tribune above, which were used as royal mausoleums, we must look to eighth- and ninth-century Asturia.’
- ‘The stair placed in the centre of the house represents an early stage in Soane's systematic development of the theme of the top-lit tribune that was to reach its apogee in his design for the National Debt Redemption Office.’
- ‘Of course, when working at a major swim meet, I'm usually going to be constantly walking up and down many flights of stairs from the pool deck to the media tribune for several days straight.’
- ‘The media tribune was overflowing with hundreds of reporters, all drawn to an event that has been hyped incessantly since Phelps entered and qualified for the 200 free at the U.S. Olympic trials last month.’
- ‘The first time I got a different take on my very European perspective on how journalists should view their own country, was on my first trip in the US, in South Carolina where I watched a game of American football from the press tribune.’
- ‘Observers in the press tribune commented on the ease in which China appeared to do the most difficult elements.’
Mid 17th century (denoting the principal room in an Italian mansion): via French from Italian, from medieval Latin tribuna, alteration of Latin tribunal (see tribunal).
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