Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. A member of a British political party, founded in 1689, that was the opposition party to the Whigs and has been known as the Conservative Party since about 1832.
  • n. A member of a Conservative Party, as in Canada.
  • n. An American who, during the period of the American Revolution, favored the British side. Also called Loyalist.
  • n. A supporter of traditional political and social institutions against the forces of democratization or reform; a political conservative.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A member or supporter of the British Conservative Party, which evolved from Royalist politicians; associated with upholding the rights of the monarchy and the privileges of the established Church.
  • n. One who is like a British Tory; someone politically conservative.
  • n. A member or supporter of the Conservative Party of Canada or one of that party's predecessors.
  • n. A pejorative nickname given to the political factions who sought to exclude James, Duke of York from the throne of England (the Exclusioners) in the 17th century.
  • n. A pejorative term for an Irish rebel fighting against English rule at the end of the Confederate War and Cromwellian invasion; later extended to other rebels or bandits.
  • n. A loyal British citizen.
  • n. A Union sympathizer.
  • adj. Of or belonging to the Tory Party or the Conservative Party.
  • adj. Of or belonging to the Conservative Party of Canada or one of that party's predecessors.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. A member of the conservative party, as opposed to the progressive party which was formerly called the Whig, and is now called the Liberal, party; an earnest supporter of existing royal and ecclesiastical authority.
  • n. One who, in the time of the Revolution, favored submitting to the claims of Great Britain against the colonies; an adherent to the crown.
  • adj. Of or pertaining to the Tories.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. Originally, an Irish robber or outlaw, one of a class noted for their outrages and savage cruelty.
  • n. Hence, one who causes terror; a hector; a bully.
  • n. A member of one of the two great British political parties, opposed to the Whigs and later to the Liberals.
  • n. In American hist., a member of the British party during the Revolutionary period; a loyalist.
  • n. In general, a conservative; one who favors established authority and institutions, especially in a monarchy or an aristocracy; a person of aristocratic principles, as opposed to a democrat or a radical.
  • Pertaining to or characteristic of tories, in any sense; specifically [capitalized], belonging or relating to the Tories: as, a Tory government; Tory principles or measures. See I.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. a member of political party in Great Britain that has been known as the Conservative Party since 1832; was the opposition party to the Whigs
  • n. an American who favored the British side during the American Revolution
  • n. a supporter of traditional political and social institutions against the forces of reform; a political conservative

Etymologies

Irish Gaelic tóraidhe, robber, from Old Irish tóir, pursuit.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Irish *tóraidhe ("pursuer") (unattested except in derivatives, eg tóraigheachd ("pusuit")), from tóir ("to pursue"). (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • As for the term Tory - can't see what's wrong with it.

    The Tory Brand

  • The term Tory in America was, as a matter of fact, an epithet of derision applied by the revolutionists to all who opposed them.

    The United Empire Loyalists : A Chronicle of the Great Migration

  • It's a lamentable commentary on the debased state of political discourse in this country that the author of Friday's Globe report seems to think the term Tory belongs to the neo-liberal wrecking crew, to which Mr. Harper belongs but Mr. Cameron apparently does not.

    Progressive Bloggers

  • Just seen this title Tory plans for electoral system on LabourHome.org - due to the Stalinist policy on comments there is no point replying there.

    Alexander Baker is deluding himself

  • They hope to achieve that by bringing attention back to what they call Tory sleaze and arrogance.

    The Globe and Mail - Home RSS feed

  • It's amazing how, when you attach the word 'Tory' or 'Conservative' to a beautiful woman, her appeal almost immediately evaporates.

    The Guardian World News

  • Unveiling a new tieless look, the Prime Minister resorted to Biblical language to condemn what he called a Tory 'assault on all the pillars of the welfare state'.

    Home | Mail Online

  • Three issues on the cards: what he calls Tory threats to the cancer guarantee, free nursery education and fair schooling.

    The Guardian World News

  • Lib Dems hit back over 'Tory smear campaign' today at what they called a Tory-backed smear campaign as Nick Clegg, Gordon Brown and David

    WN.com - Business News

  • In January, he launched LabourList, a campaigning website designed to counter what he described as the Tory-bias of the 'blogosphere'.

    Home | Mail Online

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