The Meaning of the Word “Civilization”
Historically, the word civilization refers to a system of laws and institutions that guide human society. The word civilization comes from the Latin word civis, which means “civil.” In ancient times, the Empire spanned the Mediterranean basin and parts of the United Kingdom and the Black Sea. Its empire was centered in central Italy, and it had an extensive territory. To sustain its growth, the empire needed an effective government administration and infrastructure to carry out its objectives.
Today, it is more common to use the word “civilization” in the plural. In the past, “civilization” meant the progress of humanity as a whole. In the nineteenth century, the term “civilizations” was more commonly used. The word “culture” is uncountable, but in ethnography, it has come to be a countable noun. For example, the definition of a civilization is often an attempt to define a certain culture or society by its characteristics.
The word “civilization” was first used in the mid-18th century. The original meaning of civilization was very different from what we use it today. In the preimperialistic era, people of less developed lands were often seen as barbarians, but in later centuries, it was more common to think of such people as free, civilized individuals. In the 18th century, social theory argued that civilization was the ultimate goal of humanity and the most ideal condition for human beings.
The term “civilization” is rooted in French, where it derives from Latin civitas. The noun civilization was coined in the 16th century, after the appearance of the verb “civilize.” It was an obvious choice, because it provided a basis for the noun that we use today. It was also a neologism that had its time. For example, the English word ‘civilization’ came from the Middle Ages.
Historically, the word civilization was used to describe societies that have a free minority. The free members of the society do not engage in economic activities, such as agriculture, but instead engage in social activities like art, religion, writing, and war. The latter is necessary to sustain life on a material level. Thus, the term civilization is a useful term to use in the modern world. It is also a useful term in the context of the study of social structures.
The term civilization is a common word that has multiple meanings. Its first recorded use means “civilize”. In 1743, the word civilizer was used to describe the process of turning a criminal matter into a lawful and just society. In this sense, a society is a “civilization” if it has a high level of civilization, and the resulting laws and regulations are binding on all its members.