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Anglo-Norman majesté, magestee, maisté, Old French, Middle French magesté (earlier maesté, maisté, majeté, majestet; French majesté) < classical Latin miests (in post-classical Latin frequently also magestas) < the base of maior MAJOR
Greatness, dignity, power
- b. The dignity or greatness of a monarch; sovereign power, sovereignty. Also: the person or personality of a monarch.
- c. gen. Dignity, greatness, grandeur; supreme power, authority.
- d. Christian Church. Eternal glory. Obs.
- e. Roman Hist. The sovereign power and dignity of the Roman people, esp. considered with reference to offences against it. Cf. LESE-MAJESTY n. Obs.
- 2. Preceded by a possessive (your, his, her, the king's, the queen's); sometimes with a modifying adjective, as (most) sacred, gracious, royal, etc.: an honorific title given to a king, queen, emperor, or empress.
- 3. The external magnificence befitting a monarch.
- 4. a. Kingly or queenly dignity of look, bearing, or appearance; impressive stateliness of aspect or demeanour. Also fig.
- b. Of natural objects, buildings, etc.
Extended uses applied to things
- 6. A representation of the Virgin or of Jesus, occas. of God the Father or of the Holy Trinity, enthroned in glory.
- 7. A canopy supported on a framework (a hearse) over a bier or coffin in a church. Obs.
- 8. Heraldry. eagle in her majesty n. a representation of a crowned eagle holding in its talons a symbol of sovereign power, esp. a sceptre or orb. Obs.