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Aristocracy is a form of government that places power in the hands of a small, privileged ruling class. The term derives from the Greek aristokratia, meaning "rule of the best".

Throughout the centuries kings of Poland were elected by the nobility in the fields outside Warsaw

Aristocracy (Greek ἀριστοκρατία aristokratía, from ἄριστος aristos "excellent," and κράτος kratos "power") is a form of government that places power in the hands of a small, privileged ruling class. The term derives from the Greek aristokratia, meaning "rule of the best".

At the time of the word's origins in Ancient Greece, the Greeks conceived it as rule by the best qualified citizens—and often contrasted it favourably with monarchy, rule by an individual. In later times, aristocracy was usually seen as rule by a privileged group, the aristocratic class, and was contrasted with democracy.

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