Learn English – What does “modest station of judges” mean


The Washington Post (March 20) carries an article under the title, “
Supreme Court nominee promises to remember ‘modest station’ of judges in a democracy,” which follows:

Judge Neil Gorsuch promised to remember the “modest station we judges are meant to occupy in a democracy” if he is elevated to the nation’s highest court, as the hearing on his nomination to the Supreme Court began among Democratic doubts about his impartiality and whether he should be before them in the first place.

Oxford Advanced English Learners Dictionary provides the definition of ‘station‘ other than railway / bus stops and radio / TV stations as 5.(old-fashioned or formal) your social position.

What does “the modest station of judges” mean? Does it simply mean a post? What is the special implication of “station” here in quotes, if it has?

Best Answer

In that context station refers to:

the position, as of persons or things, in a scale of estimation, rank, or dignity; standing:

  • the responsibility of persons of high station.


He is sort of downplaying the effective role and power that judges have in the American democratic system.