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De Staalmeesters (The Sampling Officials, also known as Syndics of the Drapers’ Guild, 1662) by Rembrandt, from the collection of the Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam, the Netherlands

From French syndicat (office of a syndic; board of syndics; trade union), from syndic (syndic; representative; chief magistrate of Geneva) + -at (suffix denoting an action or result of an action), from Medieval Latin *syndicatus, from syndicus (representative of a corporation or town; syndic) (from Ancient Greek σύνδικος (súndikos, advocate for a defendant), from σύν (sún, beside; with) + δίκη (díkē, judgment; justice)) + -ātus (suffix forming adjectives from nouns indicating the possession of a thing or a quality).

Compare Italian sindacato (syndicate; trade union; audit, control, supervision), Occitan sendegat, Portuguese sindicato (trade union), Spanish sindicado, sindicato (office of a syndic; syndicate; trade union).



syndicate (plural syndicates)

  1. A group of individuals or companies formed to transact some specific business, or to promote a common interest; a self-coordinating group.
    a gambling syndicate
    • 1886, Julian Thomas, “Maafu, Prince of Tonga”, in Cannibals & Convicts: Notes of Personal Experiences in the Western Pacific, London, New York, N.Y.: Cassel & Company, Limited, →OCLC, page 24:
      The worst deed ever alleged against the early sandalwood traders was that a number of natives were suffocated in a cave at Vaté, in the New Hebrides, by the smoke from a fire built at its mouth. But this was done by order of Maafu, who, on behalf of an Australian syndicate of highly-respectable merchants and church-members, was "bossing" an expedition in search of sandalwood through the New Hebrides.
    1. (crime) A group of gangsters engaged in organized crime.
      • 1999, John Madinger, “Case Development”, in Confidential Informant: Law Enforcement’s Most Valuable Tool, Boca Raton, Fla.: CRC Press, →ISBN, page 178:
        Held at the estate of Mafia boss Joseph Barbara in Apalachin, NY, the meeting called by [Vito] Genovese in November 1957 brought over 100 mobsters from around the country to cement his power over the national crime syndicate.
    2. (mass media) A group of media companies, or an agency, formed to acquire content such as articles, cartoons, etc., and to publish it in multiple outlets; a chain of newspapers or other media outlets managed by such an organization.
  2. The office or jurisdiction of a syndic; a body or council of syndics.
    • 1686, G[ilbert] Burnet, Some Letters Containing, an Account of What Seemed Most Remarkable in Switzerland, Italy, &c. Written by G. Burnett, D.D. to T[he] H[onourable] R[obert] B[oyle], Rotterdam: Printed by Abraham Acher, bookseller by the Exchange, →OCLC, pages 10–11:
      The ſoveraintie lies in the Council of 200, and this Council chuſes out of its number 25, who are the leſſer Council; [] they are choſen by a ſort of ballet, ſo that it is not known for whom they give their votes, which is an effectual method to ſuppreſs factions and reſentments; ſince in a competition no man can know who voted for him or againſt him: yet the election is not ſo carried, but that the whole Town is in an intrigue concerning it: for ſince the being of the little Council leads one to the Sindicat, which is the chieffe honor of the State: this dignitie is courted here, with as active and ſolicitous an ambition as appears elſewhere for greater matters.
    • 1859, [India Office, Government of the United Kingdom], “Copy of Correspondence with the Indian Government, Showing the Progress of the Measures Adopted for Carrying Out the Education Despatch of the 19th Day of July 1854. [Bye-laws for the Government of the University of Madras.]”, in Accounts and Papers: Twenty-one Volumes. [...] Session 2, 31 May – 13 August 1859, volume 10 (East India (Education)), part II (Madras); volume XXIV, part II, [London: Her Majesty's Stationery Office], →OCLC, page 367:
      The executive government of the University [of Madras] shall be vested in a syndicate, consisting of the Vice-Chancellor and six of the fellows, who shall be elected for one year by the several faculties, at the annual meetng of the senate, []



syndicate (third-person singular simple present syndicates, present participle syndicating, simple past and past participle syndicated)

  1. (intransitive) To become a syndicate.
    • 2006, Greg Niemann, “A Settlement is Born (Late 1800s)”, in Palm Springs Legends: Creation of a Desert Oasis (Adventures in the Natural History and Cultural Heritage of the Californias), San Diego, Calif.: Sunbelt Publications, published 2008, →ISBN, page 38:
      [H]e [John Guthrie McCallum] went to Los Angeles and set up a law practice. There, with three partners and a capitalization of $100,000, they syndicated under the name Palm Valley Land and Water Company in 1887.
  2. (transitive) To put under the control of a group acting as a unit.
    • 1999, Esteban C. Buljevich, Yoon S. Park, “Syndicated Eurocredit Loans”, in Project Financing and the International Financial Markets, Boston, Mass., Dordrecht: Kluwer Academic Publishers, →ISBN, page 20:
      When a potential transaction has been identified by a bank, the first activity is obtaining from the potential borrower a "mandate," which is the customer's exclusive authorization to a bank to act as the syndication manager for that particular transaction and to approach other financial institutions on its behalf to raise a given amount of funds. [] A mandate letter is very similar to a standard bank commitment letter, with the exception that bank managers do not guarantee to provide the credit facility, but rather only to syndicate it on a "best efforts" basis, perhaps with a certain firm commitment assumed by them representing a portion of the required syndicated financing.
  3. (transitive, mass media) To release media content through a syndicate to be broadcast or published through multiple outlets.
    • 2015, Avi Santo, “Building the Franchise One Market at a Time: The Lone Ranger’s Extra-Textual Career in the Late 1930s”, in Selling the Silver Bullet: The Lone Ranger and Transmedia Brand Licensing, Austin, Tx.: University of Texas Press, →DOI, →ISBN, page 56:
      [I]nternational television format exchanges are providing a customizable alternative to syndicating existing TV series in foreign markets. Sixteen countries around the world have adapted So You Think You Can Dance, a reality dance competition that originated in the United States. Format changes range from using local judges and contestants to incorporating local dance styles into the competition.
    • 2011, Anne Lies, “Chicago!”, in Oprah Winfrey: Media Mogul, Edina, Minn.: ABDO Publishing Company, →ISBN, pages 49–50:
      With the success of The Oprah Winfrey Show and the national attention that Oprah [Winfrey] received from The Color Purple, [Jeffrey] Jacobs advised her that it was time to syndicate her show. Jacobs worked out a deal with the syndication company King World to distribute the show nationally. Two brothers, Roger and Michael King, ran King World. They syndicated the game shows Wheel of Fortune and Jeopardy! and were looking for a new show to add to their list.

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