allegiance

noun
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

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Other Words from allegiance

allegiant \ ə-​ˈlē-​jənt How to pronounce allegiant (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

For instance, Warren has benefited most from former Kamala Harris supporters switching their allegiance. CBS News, "Elizabeth Warren rises as Joe Biden clings to delegate edge — CBS News Battleground Tracker," 9 Sep. 2019 Nigeria are trying to convince Chelsea striker Tammy Abraham to switch his international allegiance to the Super Eagles, despite already being capped twice by England. SI.com, "Nigeria Trying to Persuade Chelsea Striker Tammy Abraham to Turn His Back on England," 4 Sep. 2019 Oklahoma After Baker Mayfield and Kyler Murray comes Jalen Hurts, the transfer quarterback who led Alabama to a 26-2 record before switching allegiances. Randy Peterson, USA TODAY, "Big 12 Power Rankings, Week 1: Three clear favorites to start the year," 22 Aug. 2019 Also around 1855, Barnum switched his allegiance from the Democratic to the Republican Party. Elizabeth Kolbert, The New Yorker, "What P. T. Barnum Understood About America," 29 July 2019 Even some pro-government districts such as Uskudar, where Erdogan has his home, and Fatih, the conservative heart of the old city, switched allegiances in Sunday’s vote. Laura King, latimes.com, "How will Turkey’s authoritarian president react to opposition’s big win in Istanbul mayoral race?," 24 June 2019 The case for carry-on bags: Pledging allegiance to the carry-on luggage lifestyle enables this kind of seamless travel. Natalie B. Compton, Twin Cities, "Checking a bag vs. carrying on is the great debate of airline travel," 7 Aug. 2019 At the same time, local newspapers are dying out and political discourse is becoming increasingly nationalized, which means most issues are abstract and dominated by tribal allegiance and caricatured right-left narratives. Sean Illing, Vox, "Intellectuals have said democracy is failing for a century. They were wrong.," 20 Dec. 2018 The latest version ends simply with Willard leaving the camp and its ranks of hollow men, the savages who have mindlessly transferred their allegiance to the new alpha after the slaughter. Kyle Smith, National Review, "The Greatest War Movie Ever Made," 10 Aug. 2019

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.

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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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Statistics for allegiance

Last Updated

17 Sep 2019

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Time Traveler for allegiance

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

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More Definitions for allegiance

allegiance

noun

English Language Learners Definition of allegiance

formal : loyalty to a person, country, group, etc.

allegiance

noun
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.

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Comments on allegiance

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