Tyr"an*ny (?), n. [OE. tirannye, OF. tirannie, F. tyrannie; cf. It. tirannia; Gr. , , L. tyrannis. See Tyrant.]

1.

The government or authority of a tyrant; a country governed by an absolute ruler; hence, arbitrary or despotic exercise of power; exercise of power over subjects and others with a rigor not authorized by law or justice, or not requisite for the purposes of government.

"Sir," would he [Seneca] say, "an emperor mote need Be virtuous and hate tyranny." Chaucer.

2.

Cruel government or discipline; as, the tyranny of a schoolmaster.

3.

Severity; rigor; inclemency.

The tyranny of the open night's too rough For nature to endure. Shak.

 

© Webster 1913.

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