Etymology
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authoritarian (adj.)

"favoring imposed order over freedom," 1862, from authority + -an. Compare authoritative, which originally had this meaning to itself. Noun in the sense of one advocating or practicing the principle of authority over individual freedom is from 1859.

updated on March 05, 2017

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Definitions of authoritarian from WordNet
1
authoritarian (adj.)
characteristic of an absolute ruler or absolute rule; having absolute sovereignty;
an authoritarian regime
Synonyms: autocratic / dictatorial / despotic / tyrannic / tyrannical
authoritarian (adj.)
expecting unquestioning obedience;
the timid child of authoritarian parents
2
authoritarian (n.)
a person who behaves in a tyrannical manner;
Synonyms: dictator
From wordnet.princeton.edu, not affiliated with etymonline.