The term empire derives from the Latin imperium (power, authority). Politically, an empire is a geographically extensive group of states and peoples (ethnic groups) united and ruled either by a monarch (emperor, empress) or an oligarchy.
Aside from the traditional usage, the term empire can be used in an extended sense to denote a large-scale business enterprise (e.g. a transnational corporation), or a political organisation of either national-, regional- or city scale, controlled either by a person (a political boss) or a group authority (political bosses).
An imperial political structure is established and maintained in two ways: (i) as a territorial empire of direct conquest and control with force (direct, physical action to compel the emperor's goals), and (ii) as a coercive, hegemonic empire of indirect conquest and control with power (the perception that the emperor can physically enforce his desired goals). The former provides greater tribute and direct political control, yet limits further expansion because it absorbs military forces to fixed garrisons. The latter provides less tribute and indirect control, but avails military forces for further expansion. Territorial empires (e.g. the Mongol Empire, the Median Empire) tended to be contiguous areas. The term on occasion has been applied to maritime empires or thalassocracies, (e.g. the Athenian and British Empires) with looser structures and more scattered territories.
Other articles related to "empire, political":
... Wars in 610, Heraclius became the emperor of the Byzantine Empire, after overthrowing Phocas ... for peace, agreeing to withdraw from all occupied territories of the Byzantine Empire ... Meanwhile there had been rapid political development in Arabia, where Prophet Mohammad had been preaching Islam and by 630, he had successfully united most of the Arabia under a single political ...
... and politician Cecil Rhodes advocated the British Empire reannexing the United States of America and reforming itself into an "Imperial Federation" to bring about a ... United States of America as an integral part of the British Empire, the inauguration of a system of Colonial representation in the Imperial Parliament which ... more than a century ideological extremists at either end of the political spectrum have seized upon well-publicized incidents.. ...
Famous quotes related to empire:
“Germany collapsed as a result of having engaged in a struggle for empire with the concepts of provincial politics.”
—Albert Camus (19131960)
“When heaven and earth were in confusion hurld
For the debated empire of the world,
Which awed with dreadful expectation lay,
Soon to be slaves, uncertain who should sway:”
—Lucretius (Titus Lucretius Carus)
“Without the Empire we should be tossed like a cork in the cross current of world politics. It is at once our sword and our shield.”
—William Morris Hughes (18641952)
“Positively I sit here, and look at Europe sink, first one deck disappearing, then another, and the whole ship slowly plunging bow-down into the abyss; until the nightmare gets to be howling. The Roman Empire was a trifle to it.”
—Henry Brooks Adams (18381918)
“That is the great end of empires before God, to be Catholic and draw nations into their Catholicism. But our empire is less and less Christian as it grows.”
—Gerard Manley Hopkins (18441889)