Online Encyclopedia

CITIZEN (a form corrupted in Eng., ap...

Online Encyclopedia
Originally appearing in Volume V06, Page 397 of the 1911 Encyclopedia Britannica.
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CITIZEN (a form corrupted in Eng., apparently by analogy with " denizen," from O. Fr. citeain, mod. Fr. citoyen), etymologically the inhabitant of a city, cite or civitas (see CITY), and in England the term still used primarily of persons possessing civic rights in a borough; thus used also of a townsman as opposed to a countryman. The more extended use of the word, however, corresponding to civitas, gives " citizen " the meaning of one who is a constituent member of a state in international relations and as such has full national rights and owes a certain allegiance (q.v.) as opposed to an "alien"; in republican countries the term is then commonly employed as the equivalent of " subject " in monarchies of feudal origin. For the rules governing the obtaining of citizenship in this latter sense in the United States and elsewhere see NATURALIZATION.
End of Article: CITIZEN (a form corrupted in Eng., apparently by analogy with " denizen," from O. Fr. citeain, mod. Fr. citoyen)
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