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5 definitions found
 for commonwealth
From The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48 :

  Commonwealth \Com"mon*wealth`\ (?; 277), n. [Common + wealth
     1. A state; a body politic consisting of a certain number of
        men, united, by compact or tacit agreement, under one form
        of government and system of laws.
        [1913 Webster]
              The trappings of a monarchy would set up an ordinary
              commonwealth.                         --Milton.
        [1913 Webster]
     Note: This term is applied to governments which are
           considered as free or popular, but rarely, or
           improperly, to an absolute government. The word
           signifies, strictly, the common well-being or
           happiness; and hence, a form of government in which the
           general welfare is regarded rather than the welfare of
           any class.
           [1913 Webster]
     2. The whole body of people in a state; the public.
        [1913 Webster]
     3. (Eng. Hist.) Specifically, the form of government
        established on the death of Charles I., in 1649, which
        existed under Oliver Cromwell and his son Richard, ending
        with the abdication of the latter in 1659.
     Syn: State; realm; republic.
          [1913 Webster]

From WordNet (r) 3.0 (2006) :

      n 1: the official name of some states in the United States
           (Massachusetts and Pennsylvania and Virginia and Kentucky)
           and associated territories (Puerto Rico)
      2: a politically organized body of people under a single
         government; "the state has elected a new president"; "African
         nations"; "students who had come to the nation's capitol";
         "the country's largest manufacturer"; "an industrialized
         land" [syn: state, nation, country, land,
         commonwealth, res publica, body politic]
      3: a world organization of autonomous states that are united in
         allegiance to a central power but are not subordinate to it
         or to one another
      4: a political system in which the supreme power lies in a body
         of citizens who can elect people to represent them [syn:
         democracy, republic, commonwealth]

From Moby Thesaurus II by Grady Ward, 1.0 :

  165 Moby Thesaurus words for "commonwealth":
     Everyman, John Doe, Public, absolute monarchy, ally, archduchy,
     archdukedom, aristocracy, ashram, autarchy, autocracy, autonomy,
     body, body politic, buffer state, captive nation, caste,
     chieftaincy, chieftainry, citizenry, city-state, clan, class,
     coalition government, colonialism, colony, common man, commonweal,
     commune, community, community at large, constituency,
     constitutional government, constitutional monarchy, country,
     county, cultural community, democracy, dictatorship, domain,
     dominion, dominion rule, duarchy, duchy, dukedom, duumvirate,
     dwellers, dyarchy, earldom, economic class, empery, empire,
     endogamous group, estate, everybody, everyman, everyone,
     everywoman, extended family, family, federal government,
     federation, feudal system, folk, folks, free city, garrison state,
     general public, gens, gentry, gerontocracy, grand duchy, habitancy,
     heteronomy, hierarchy, hierocracy, home rule, inhabitants, kingdom,
     kinship group, land, limited monarchy, linguistic community,
     mandant, mandate, mandated territory, mandatee, mandatory,
     martial law, men, meritocracy, militarism, military government,
     mob rule, mobocracy, moiety, monarchy, nation, nationality,
     neocolonialism, nuclear family, ochlocracy, oligarchy, order,
     pantisocracy, patriarchate, patriarchy, people, people at large,
     people in general, persons, phratria, phratry, phyle, police state,
     polis, polity, populace, population, possession, power,
     principality, principate, protectorate, province, public,
     puppet government, puppet regime, pure democracy, realm, regency,
     representative democracy, representative government, republic,
     satellite, self-determination, self-government, seneschalty,
     settlement, social class, social democracy, society,
     sovereign nation, speech community, state, stratocracy, subcaste,
     sultanate, superpower, technocracy, territory, thearchy, theocracy,
     toparchia, toparchy, totalitarian government, totalitarian regime,
     totem, triarchy, triumvirate, tyranny, welfare state, whole people,
     world, you and me

From Bouvier's Law Dictionary, Revised 6th Ed (1856) :

  COMMONWEALTH, government. A commonwealth is properly a free state, or 
  republic, having a popular or representative government. The term has been, 
  applied to the government of Great Britain. It is not applicable to absolute 
  governments. The states composing the United States are, properly, so many 
       2. It is a settled principle, that no sovereign power is amenable to 
  answer suits, either in its own courts or in those of a foreign country, 
  unless by its own consent. 4 Yeates, 494. 

From The Devil's Dictionary (1881-1906) :

  COMMONWEALTH, n.  An administrative entity operated by an incalculable
  multitude of political parasites, logically active but fortuitously
      This commonwealth's capitol's corridors view,
      So thronged with a hungry and indolent crew
      Of clerks, pages, porters and all attaches
      Whom rascals appoint and the populace pays
      That a cat cannot slip through the thicket of shins
      Nor hear its own shriek for the noise of their chins.
      On clerks and on pages, and porters, and all,
      Misfortune attend and disaster befall!
      May life be to them a succession of hurts;
      May fleas by the bushel inhabit their shirts;
      May aches and diseases encamp in their bones,
      Their lungs full of tubercles, bladders of stones;
      May microbes, bacilli, their tissues infest,
      And tapeworms securely their bowels digest;
      May corn-cobs be snared without hope in their hair,
      And frequent impalement their pleasure impair.
      Disturbed be their dreams by the awful discourse
      Of audible sofas sepulchrally hoarse,
      By chairs acrobatic and wavering floors --
      The mattress that kicks and the pillow that snores!
      Sons of cupidity, cradled in sin!
      Your criminal ranks may the death angel thin,
      Avenging the friend whom I couldn't work in.

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