Usurper
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Usurper

An usurper is an illegitimate or controversial claimant to power, often but not always in a monarchy. In other words, a person who takes the power of a country, city, or established region for themselves, without any formal or legal right to claim it as their own. [1] Usurpers can rise to power in a region by often unexpected physical force, as well as through political influence and deceit. One tactic to deter or defeat usurpation is civilian-based defense.

Etymology

The word originally came from the Latin word usurpare ("to seize" or "to use").[2]

Politics

The Greeks had their own conception of what a usurper was, calling them tyrants.[3] In the ancient Greek usage, a tyrant (tyrannos in Greek) was an individual who rose to power via unconstitutional or illegitimate means, usually not being an heir to an existing throne.[4] Such individuals were perceived negatively by political philosophers such as Socrates, Plato and Aristotle.[5][6]

Usurpers often try to legitimize their position by claiming to be a descendant of a ruler that they may or may not be related to.

References

  1. ^ "Definition of USURPER". www.merriam-webster.com. Retrieved .
  2. ^ "usurp". CollinsDictionary.com. HarperCollins. Retrieved .
  3. ^ Kagan, Donald (October 1998). Pericles Of Athens And The Birth Of Democracy. Simon and Schuster. p. 250. ISBN 9780684863955.
  4. ^ Kagan, Donald (October 1998). Pericles Of Athens And The Birth Of Democracy. Simon and Schuster. p. 250. ISBN 9780684863955.
  5. ^ "The Republic, by Plato". www.gutenberg.org. Retrieved .
  6. ^ Aristotle (2010-02-15). The Politics, Book 5, chapter 10. University of Chicago Press. ISBN 9780226026701.

Further reading

See also


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