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Definition a powerful ruler — especially one who is unconstrained by law
  • Dost thou infamonize me among potentates?
    William Shakespeare  --  Love's Labour's Lost
  • Without taking overmuch upon myself my good word will go far towards gaining any strange gentleman a fair reception from yonder potentate you wot of.
    Nathaniel Hawthorne  --  The Scarlet Letter
  • Legree, like some potentates we read of in history, governed his plantation by a sort of resolution of forces.
    Harriet Beecher Stowe  --  Uncle Tom's Cabin
  • He had met many peculiar potentates in his time; he took a detached interest in them, and was shrewd as a rule in his assessments.
    James Hilton  --  Lost Horizon
  • He has been a little potentate too long.
    Willa Cather  --  Death Comes for the Archbishop
  • Yet each of these potentates saw well the reason of his exclusion.
    Ralph Waldo Emerson  --  Society and Solitude
  • Well, sir, this gentleman is come to me With commendation from great potentates, And here he means to spend his time awhile.
    William Shakespeare  --  The Two Gentlemen of Verona
  • And of the potentates he had met, he trusted Islanzadi the least.
    Christopher Paolini  --  Brisingr
  • I come down here, for instance, and I find a mighty potentate exacting homage.
    Charles Dickens  --  Bleak House
  • As time passed, I realized that Moody was not the all-powerful potentate whom he fantasized himself to be.
    Betty Mahmoody  --  Not Without My Daughter
  • His bosom was loaded with medals, some in massive silver, and one or two even in gold, the gifts of various Christian potentates during the long period of his life.
    James Fenimore Cooper  --  The Last of the Mohicans
  • He has been seated on a throne surrounded with minions and mistresses, giving audience to the envoys of foreign potentates, in all the supercilious pomp of majesty.
    Alexander Hamilton, James Madison, & John Jay  --  The Federalist Papers
  • They drove about the chain of garden-circled lakes, and viewed the houses of the millers and lumbermen and real estate peers—the potentates of the expanding city.
    Sinclair Lewis  --  Main Street
  • Mr Dorrit's speech had had more hesitation in it than usual, as he approached the ticklish topic, for he was not perfectly clear how so exalted a potentate might take it.
    Charles Dickens  --  Little Dorrit
  • These potentates had two principal anxieties: the one, that no foreigner should enter Italy under arms; the other, that none of themselves should seize more territory.
    Nicolo Machiavelli  --  The Prince
  • Perhaps because they were so used to listening to conversations between potentates, the ambassadors felt reflexively that Alessandro was speaking on behalf of Italy.
    Mark Helprin  --  A Soldier of the Great War
  • He watched the process one evening, and discovered that the captive potentate had taken on himself the responsibility, which he had with his own intelligence observed.
    T. H. White  --  The Once and Future King
  • She was now one of a group of oriental beauties who, in the second act of the comic opera, were paraded by the vizier before the new potentate as the treasures of his harem.
    Theodore Dreiser  --  Sister Carrie
  • Edward knows as well as you or I that the potentates in Saint Petersburg have to make good their losses in Manchuria and desperately need to distract their own revolutionaries.
    Thomas Mann  --  The Magic Mountain
  • Reliance on a single legislature was a certain road to disaster, for the same reason reliance on a single executive—king, potentate, president—was bound to bring ruin and despotism.
    David McCullough  --  John Adams

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