Tsar

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Tsar (Russian: Царь; Bulgarian: Цар) also spelled Czar, or Tzar, or Csar, is a Slavic title which can be translated into either Emperor or King, and is derived from Caesar. It is used to name the supreme ruler of a state, most commonly autocracies in Eastern Europe.

"Tsar" was the official title of the supreme ruler in the following states:

  • Bulgaria in 913–1018, in 1185–1422 and in 1908–1946
  • Serbia in 1346–1371
  • Russia from 1547 until 1721 (remaining in common usage until 1917)

And in the following micronations:

Metaphorical uses

Like many lofty titles, e.g. Mogul, Tsar or Czar has been used as a metaphor for positions of high authority, in English since 1866 (referring to U.S. President Andrew Johnson), with a connotation of dictatorial powers and style, fitting since "Autocrat" was an official title of the Russian Emperor (informally referred to as the Tsar). Similarly, Speaker of the House Thomas Brackett Reed was called "Czar Reed" for his dictatorial control of the House of Representatives in the 1880s and 90s.

Slang term

In the United States the title "czar" is a slang term for certain high-level civil servants, such as the "drug czar" for the head of the Drug Enforcement Administration, "terrorism czar" for a Presidential advisor on terrorism policy, "cybersecurity czar" for the highest-ranking Department of Homeland Security official on computer security and information security policy, and "war czar" to oversee the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.

In micronations

In the micronational world, the term Tsar is not very common, as it was mostly used only in Eastern Europe. Consequently, the terms Emperor or King, either of which Tsar can be translated as, are more commonly used to describe a micronational monarch. However, there are still micronations which are ruled by a Tsar. In most cases, Tsar is used as an Imperial title.

The only currently known micronations with a Tsar as its head of state is the People's Democratic Autocracy of Arborea, the Tsardom of Nolland, and the Great Lawl Reich.