mandarinate

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English[edit]

Etymology[edit]

mandarin +‎ -ate

Noun[edit]

mandarinate (plural mandarinates)

  1. The collective body of officials (mandarins) or persons of rank in historical China.
    1. A similar educated elite in any place.
      • 1901, Edward Alsworth Ross, Social Control: A Survey of the Foundations of Order, page 88:
        As higher education, claiming more and more years of one’s life, widens the space between those who possess it and those who do not, and as the enlightenment of the public wanes relatively to the superior enlightenment of the learned castes and professions, the mandarinate will infallibly draw to itself a greater and greater share of social power.
  2. A political form of rule by mandarins.
  3. The status of holding a position as a mandarin.
  4. (figuratively) A type of government marked by excessive bureaucracy and Byzantine regulations.
    • 2011, Ian Buruma, Europe without Turkey:
      Far from being a model of democracy, the EU is associated with an arrogant, out-of-touch mandarinate that issues rules and edicts with paternalistic and highhanded disregard for ordinary citizens.

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