noun \ˈtri-ˌbyün, tri-ˈ\

Definition of TRIBUNE

:  a Roman official under the monarchy and the republic with the function of protecting the plebeian citizen from arbitrary action by the patrician magistrates
:  an unofficial defender of the rights of the individual
tri·bune·ship \-ˌship\ noun

Origin of TRIBUNE

Middle English, from Latin tribunus, from tribus tribe
First Known Use: 14th century



Definition of TRIBUNE

:  a dais or platform from which an assembly is addressed

Origin of TRIBUNE

French, from Italian tribuna, from Latin tribunal
First Known Use: circa 1771


noun    (Concise Encyclopedia)

In ancient Rome, any of various military and civil officials. Military tribunes were originally infantry commanders. In the early republic there were six to a legion; some were appointed by consuls or military commanders, others elected by the people. During the Roman empire (from 27 BC), the emperor nominated military tribunes, the office of which was considered preliminary to a senatorial or equestrian career (see eques). Of the civil tribunes, the most important were the tribunes of the plebs (see plebeian), who were elected in the plebeian assembly. By 450 BC there were 10 plebeian tribunes, who were elected annually with the right to intervene in cases of unjust acts of consuls or magistrates by saying “Veto” (meaning “I forbid it”). The office became powerful; its powers were curtailed by Sulla but restored by Pompey. Under the empire the powers of the plebeian tribunes passed to the emperor.


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