Pretorian bandsor guards, or Pretorians(Rom. Hist.), the emperor's bodyguards, instituted by the Emperor Augustus in nine cohorts of 1,000 men each.Pretorian gate(Rom. Antiq.), that one of the four gates in a camp which lay next the enemy. Brande & C.

(Pre*to"ri*an), n. A soldier of the pretorian guard.

(||Pre*to"ri*um) n. [L. praetorium, fr. praetor.]

1. The general's tent in a Roman camp; hence, a council of war, because held in the general's tent.

2. The official residence of a governor of a province; hence, a place; a splendid country seat.

(Pre"tor*ship) n. The office or dignity of a pretor. J. Warton

(Pre*tor"ture) v. t. To torture beforehand. Fuller.

(Pret"ti*ly) adv. In a pretty manner.

(Pret"ti*ness), n. The quality or state of being pretty; — used sometimes in a disparaging sense.

A style . . . without sententious pretension or antithetical prettiness.

(Pret"ty) a. [Compar. Prettier ; superl. Prettiest.] [OE. prati, AS. prættig, prætig, crafty, sly, akin to præt, prætt, deceit, trickery, Icel. prettugr tricky, prettr a trick; probably fr. Latin, perhaps through Celtic; cf. W. praith act, deed, practice, LL. practica execution, practice, plot. See Practice.]

1. Pleasing by delicacy or grace; attracting, but not striking or impressing; of a pleasing and attractive form a color; having slight or diminutive beauty; neat or elegant without elevation or grandeur; pleasingly, but not grandly, conceived or expressed; as, a pretty face; a pretty flower; a pretty poem.

This is the prettiest lowborn lass that ever
Ran on the greensward.

2. Moderately large; considerable; as, he had saved a pretty fortune. "Wavering a pretty while." Evelyn.

(Pre*tex"ture) n. A pretext. [Obs.]

(Pre*tib"i*al) a. (Anat.) Situated in front of the tibia.

(Pre"tor) n. [L. praetor, for praeitor, fr. praeire to go before; prae before + ire to go. See Issue.]

1. (Rom. Antiq.) A civil officer or magistrate among the ancient Romans.

Originally the pretor was a kind of third consul; but at an early period two pretors were appointed, the first of whom (praetor urbanus) was a kind of mayor or city judge; the other (praetor peregrinus) was a judge of cases in which one or both of the parties were foreigners. Still later, the number of pretors, or judges, was further increased.

2. Hence, a mayor or magistrate. [R.] Dryden.

(Pre*to"ri*al) a. Pretorian. Burke.

(Pre*to"ri*an) a. [L. praetorians: cf. F. prétorien.] Of or pertaining to a pretor or magistrate; judicial; exercised by, or belonging to, a pretor; as, pretorian power or authority.

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