E. Cobham Brewer 18101897. Dictionary of Phrase and Fable. 1898.
Properly a chariot chair, an ornamental camp-stool made of ivory placed by the Romans in a chariot for the chief magistrate when he went to attend the council. As dictators, consuls, prætors, censors, and the chief ediles occupied such a chair, they were termed curule magistrates or
curuls. Horace calls the chair curule ebur (1 Epist., vi. 53).