Upper class

social class composed of the wealthiest members of society, who also wield the greatest political power

Upper class is an idea in sociology. It refers to the group of people at the top of a society. They are the wealthiest group of society. Members of an upper class often have great power over resources and governmental policy in their area. They may have acquired these things by inheritance, for example by being monarchs or aristocrats, or by commerce. They may own much land or other valuable property, and may spend much of their income on luxury goods such as yachts and mansions.

Portrait of the family Fagoaga Arozqueta, about 1730. Painter unknown. The family was part of the upper class in Mexico City, New Spain.

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