sovereign


1sov·er·eign

noun \ˈsä-v(ə-)rən, -vərn also ˈsə-\

: a king or queen

: a British gold coin that was used in the past

Full Definition of SOVEREIGN

1
a :  one possessing or held to possess supreme political power or sovereignty
b :  one that exercises supreme authority within a limited sphere
c :  an acknowledged leader :  arbiter
2
:  any of various gold coins of the United Kingdom

Variants of SOVEREIGN

sov·er·eign also sov·ran \ˈsä-v(ə-)rən, -vərn also ˈsə-\

Examples of SOVEREIGN

  1. <after the current sovereign dies, the monarchy may be abolished>
  2. Ricky Martin, sovereign of Latin pop culture, is back. —Raquel Cepeda, Vibe, May 1999

Origin of SOVEREIGN

Middle English soverain, from Anglo-French soverein, from soverein, adjective (see 2sovereign)
First Known Use: 13th century

Other Government and Politics Terms

agent provocateur, agitprop, autarky, cabal, egalitarianism, federalism, hegemony, plenipotentiary, popular sovereignty, socialism

2sov·er·eign

adjective \ˈsä-v(ə-)rən, -vərn also ˈsə-\

: having unlimited power or authority

: not limited

: having independent authority and the right to govern itself

Full Definition of SOVEREIGN

1
a :  superlative in quality
b :  of the most exalted kind :  supreme <sovereign virtue>
c :  having generalized curative powers <a sovereign remedy>
d :  of an unqualified nature :  unmitigated <sovereign contempt>
e :  having undisputed ascendancy :  paramount
2
a :  possessed of supreme power <a sovereign ruler>
b :  unlimited in extent :  absolute
c :  enjoying autonomy :  independent <sovereign states>
3
:  relating to, characteristic of, or befitting a supreme ruler :  royal <a sovereign right>
sov·er·eign·ly adverb

Variants of SOVEREIGN

sov·er·eign also sov·ran \ˈsä-v(ə-)rən, -vərn also ˈsə-\

Examples of SOVEREIGN

  1. the sovereign power of a king
  2. The government's sovereign duty is to protect the rights of its citizens.
  3. Local officials and a huge and enthusiastic crowd greeted Napoleon at the Portoferraio harbor. The Allies had granted him the title of Emperor of Elba, which was to be a sovereign state under his jurisdiction. —David Pryce-Jones, National Review, 4 July 2005

Origin of SOVEREIGN

Middle English soverain, from Anglo-French soverein, from Vulgar Latin *superanus, from Latin super over, above — more at over
First Known Use: 14th century

Other Government and Politics Terms

agent provocateur, agitprop, autarky, cabal, egalitarianism, federalism, hegemony, plenipotentiary, popular sovereignty, socialism

sov·er·eign

adjective \ˈsäv-(ə-)rən\   (Medical Dictionary)

Medical Definition of SOVEREIGN

: having generalized curative powers <a sovereign remedy>

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