Pre"tor (?), n. [L. praetor, for praeitor, fr. praeire to go before; prae before + ire to go. See Issue.]

1. Rom. Antiq.

A civil officer or magistrate among the ancient Romans.

⇒ Originally the pretor was a kind of third consul; but at an early period two pretors were appointed, the first of whom (praetor urbanus) was a kind of mayor or city judge; the other (praetor peregrinus) was a judge of cases in which one or both of the parties were foreigners. Still later, the number of pretors, or judges, was further increased.

2.

Hence, a mayor or magistrate.

[R.]

Dryden.

 

© Webster 1913.

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