δῆμος

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Ancient Greek[edit]

Pronunciation[edit]

 

Etymology 1[edit]

From Proto-Indo-European *deh₂mos (people) (perhaps originally a feminine), from *deh₂- (to divide), whence also δαίομαι (daíomai). The original meaning was thus "part". Cognate to Old Irish dám (followers, crowd) and Old Welsh dauu.

Alternative forms[edit]

Noun[edit]

δῆμος (dêmosm (genitive δήμου); second declension

  1. district, country, land
    • 800 BCE – 600 BCE, Homer, Iliad 5.710
      πὰρ δέ οἱ ἄλλοι ναῖον Βοιωτοὶ μάλα πίονα δῆμον ἔχοντες
      pàr dé hoi álloi naîon Boiōtoì mála píona dêmon ékhontes
      and hard by him dwelt other Boeotians having a land exceeding rich
    1. the inhabitants of a district or land
    • 800 BCE – 600 BCE, Homer, Iliad 3.50
      πατρί τε σῷ μέγα πῆμα πόληΐ τε παντί τε δήμῳ
      patrí te sôi méga pêma pólēḯ te pantí te dḗmōi
      great pain upon your father, your city, and your people
  2. the common people
    • 460 BCE – 420 BCE, Herodotus, Histories 5.66
      ἑσσούμενος δὲ ὁ Κλεισθένης τὸν δῆμον προσεταιρίζεται
      hessoúmenos dè ho Kleisthénēs tòn dêmon prosetairízetai
      Cleisthenes was getting the worst of it and took the common people into his party.
    1. (rare) commoner
  3. free citizens, sovereign people
    • 467 BCE, Aeschylus, Seven Against Thebes 1011
      δοκοῦντα καὶ δόξαντ᾽ ἀπαγγέλλειν με χρὴ δήμου προβούλοις τῆσδε Καδμείας πόλεως:
      dokoûnta kaì dóxant apangéllein me khrḕ dḗmou proboúlois têsde Kadmeías póleōs:
      It is my duty to announce the will and decrees of the council on behalf of the people of this our Cadmean city.
    1. popular government, democracy
      • 460 BCE – 420 BCE, Herodotus, Histories 3.82
        πάντων τῷ λόγῳ ἀρίστων ἐόντων, δήμου τε ἀρίστου καὶ ὀλιγαρχίης καὶ μουνάρχου
        pántōn tôi lógōi arístōn eóntōn, dḗmou te arístou kaì oligarkhíēs kaì mounárkhou
        all are at their best for the sake of argument, the best democracy and oligarchy and monarchy
    2. popular assembly
      • 380 BCE, Plato, The Republic 565b
        ἀναγκάζονται δὴ οἶμαι ἀμύνεσθαι, λέγοντές τε ἐν τῷ δήμῳ καὶ πράττοντες ὅπῃ δύνανται
        anankázontai dḕ oîmai amúnesthai, légontés te en tôi dḗmōi kaì práttontes hópēi dúnantai
        [they] are compelled to defend themselves by speeches in the assembly and any action in their power
  4. township, commune; deme
    • 64 BCE – 24 CE, Strabo, Geography 9.1.16
      Ἐλευσῖνά τε εἰπὼν ἕνα τῶν ἑκατὸν ἑβδομήκοντα δήμων
      Eleusîná te eipṑn héna tôn hekatòn hebdomḗkonta dḗmōn
      after speaking of Eleusis, one of the hundred and seventy demes
  5. name for a prostitute
  6. faction in a circus
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Etymology 2[edit]

Noun[edit]

δῆμος (dêmosm (genitive δήμου); second declension

  1. yellow serradella, Ornithopus compressus
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