BEING A WORD OF DEEP AND POWERFUL IMPLICATIONS, A GATEWAY TO THESE UNITED STATES
n. — a monarch, prince, ruler, esp. an autocratic one
— a powerful city, state, or institution
adj. — powerful, ruling
fm. Latin, potentatus, meaning powerful (hence, potent)
first published. c1475
I hereby declare, on oath, that I absolutely and entirely renounce and abjure all allegiance and fidelity to any foreign prince, potentate, state, or sovereignty, of whom or which I have heretofore been a subject or citizen; that I will support and defend the Constitution and laws of the United States of America against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; that I will bear arms on behalf of the United States when required by the law; that I will perform noncombatant service in the Armed Forces of the United States when required by the law; that I will perform work of national importance under civilian direction when required by the law; and that I take this obligation freely, without any mental reservation or purpose of evasion; so help me God.
—Naturalization Oath of Allegiance to the United States of America
featured image. Samuel John Egbert Jones, Henry IV, Part I, Act I, Scene 3 (Hotspur and the Fop). Royal Shakespeare Company Collection.
But kings and potentates must die,
For that’s the end of human misery.
—William Shakespeare, I Henry IV, III.ii.22-3 (Talbot)