Patriarchal

Pa`tri*ar"chal

(?), a. [Cf. F. patriarcal.] 1. Of or pertaining to a patriarch or to patriarchs; possessed by, or subject to, patriarchs; as, patriarchal authority or jurisdiction; a patriarchal see; a patriarchal church.
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2. Characteristic of a patriarch; venerable.
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About whose patriarchal knee
Late the little children clung.
Tennyson.
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3. (Ethnol.) Having an organization of society and government in which the head of the family exercises authority over all its generations.
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Patriarchal cross (Her.), a cross, the shaft of which is intersected by two transverse beams, the upper one being the smaller. See Illust. (2) of Cross. -- Patriarchal dispensation, the divine dispensation under which the patriarchs lived before the law given by Moses.
[1913 Webster]

 

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Thu 13th December 2018