Etymology
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matriarch (n.)

"mother or woman who heads a family or tribe," c. 1600, from matri- "mother, woman" + -arch, abstracted from patriarch, ultimately from Greek arkhein "to rule" (see archon).

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matriarchal (adj.)

"of or pertaining to maternal rule or rule by females," 1780 (in reference to bee colonies); see matriarch + -al (1). Related: Matriarchally.

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matriarchy (n.)

"government by a mother or mothers; form of social organization in which the mother is the head of the family and the descendants are reckoned through the maternal side," formed in English 1881 from matriarch + -y (4) and "patterned after patriarchy" [Barnhart].

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