al·​le·​giance | \ ə-ˈlē-jən(t)s How to pronounce allegiance (audio) \

Definition of allegiance

1a : the obligation of a feudal vassal to his liege lord
b(1) : the fidelity owed by a subject or citizen to a sovereign or government I pledge allegiance to my country.
(2) : the obligation of an alien to the government under which the alien resides
2 : devotion or loyalty to a person, group, or cause allegiance to a political party

Other Words from allegiance

allegiant \ ə-​ˈlē-​jənt How to pronounce allegiance (audio) \ adjective

Choose the Right Synonym for allegiance

fidelity, allegiance, fealty, loyalty, devotion, piety mean faithfulness to something to which one is bound by pledge or duty. fidelity implies strict and continuing faithfulness to an obligation, trust, or duty. marital fidelity allegiance suggests an adherence like that of citizens to their country. pledging allegiance fealty implies a fidelity acknowledged by the individual and as compelling as a sworn vow. fealty to the truth loyalty implies a faithfulness that is steadfast in the face of any temptation to renounce, desert, or betray. valued the loyalty of his friends devotion stresses zeal and service amounting to self-dedication. a painter's devotion to her art piety stresses fidelity to obligations regarded as natural and fundamental. filial piety

Examples of allegiance in a Sentence

He owes allegiance to them for all the help they have given him. Both candidates are working hard to convince voters to switch allegiances.
Recent Examples on the Web Around the country, election-denying Republicans have won the allegiance of GOP voters. Globe Staff,, 24 July 2022 Certainly, other Ukrainians in the Donbas felt a degree of allegiance toward their occupying neighbor. Luke Mogelson, The New Yorker, 23 July 2022 Many Dutch people wore orange blossoms to support the House of Orange; some Norwegians wore paper clips on their lapels in allegiance with King Haakon; French resisters carried the Cross of Lorraine as key fobs. Katja Hoyer, Washington Post, 24 June 2022 Laneige's Lip Sleeping Mask has received glowing reviews and earned an allegiance of fans, including celebrities like Brooke Shields and Kendall Jenner. Jessica Leigh Mattern,, 16 July 2022 As a result, fandoms, far from welcoming radical change, demand allegiance, loyalty, to tradition. Wired, 14 July 2022 Unlike previous generations, these voters are not easily swayed by old political dynamics, such as regional allegiance, loyalty to political bosses, fear of North Korea or a desire to ease tension on the Korean Peninsula. New York Times, 8 Mar. 2022 Did allegiance to the canon of American literature justify sacrificing his well-being? Los Angeles Times, 23 Feb. 2022 Robinson, an Ashland native, grew up around Kentucky fans, but her allegiance, especially in the recruiting process, was to Louisville. Cameron Teague Robinson, The Courier-Journal, 11 Dec. 2021 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'allegiance.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of allegiance

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for allegiance

Middle English aligeaunce, from Anglo-French allegeance, alteration of ligeance, from lige liege

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Time Traveler for allegiance

Time Traveler

The first known use of allegiance was in the 15th century

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Dictionary Entries Near allegiance

Allegheny vine



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Last Updated

6 Aug 2022

Cite this Entry

“Allegiance.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 14 Aug. 2022.

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More Definitions for allegiance


al·​le·​giance | \ ə-ˈlē-jəns How to pronounce allegiance (audio) \

Kids Definition of allegiance

: loyalty and service to a group, country, or idea I pledge allegiance to my country.

More from Merriam-Webster on allegiance

Nglish: Translation of allegiance for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of allegiance for Arabic Speakers


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