A tribute (from Latin tributum, contribution) is wealth, often in kind, that one party gives to another as a sign of respect or, as was often the case in historical contexts, of submission or allegiance. Various ancient states exacted tribute from the rulers of land which the state conquered or otherwise threatened to conquer. In case of alliances, lesser parties may pay tribute to more powerful parties as a sign of allegiance and often in order to finance projects that benefited both parties.
Athens received tribute from the other cities of the Delian League. The empires of Assyria, Babylon, Carthage and Rome exacted tribute from their provinces and subject kingdoms. Ancient China received tribute from various states such as Japan, Korea, Vietnam, Cambodia, Borneo, Indonesia, South Asia and Central Asia. The Roman republic also exacted tribute in the form of payments equivalent to proportional property taxes for the purpose of waging war.
Famous quotes containing the word tribute:
“A route differs from a road not only because it is solely intended for vehicles, but also because it is merely a line that connects one point with another. A route has no meaning in itself; its meaning derives entirely from the two points that it connects. A road is a tribute to space. Every stretch of road has meaning in itself and invites us to stop. A route is the triumphant devaluation of space, which thanks to it has been reduced to a mere obstacle to human movement and a waste of time.”
—Milan Kundera (b. 1929)
“Although my parents have never been the kind to hint around about grandchildren, I can think of no better tribute to them than giving them some.... I cant help thinking that the cycle is not complete until I can introduce them to a child of their child. And I can think of no better comfort when they are gone than to know that something of them lives on, not only in me but in my children.”
—Anne Cassidy. Every Child Should Have a Father But...., McCalls (March 1985)
“O heart, we are old;
The living beauty is for younger men:
We cannot pay its tribute of wild tears.”
—William Butler Yeats (18651939)