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

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from allegiance

allegiant \ -​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

In its culinary past, Houston has been largely suspicious of out-of-town restaurateurs who come in, plant their flag and expect local foodie allegiance. Greg Morago, Houston Chronicle, "Mendocino Farms picks Houston for its first expansion outside of California," 12 July 2019 The shot felt like a moment, cementing the allegiance between them and emphasizing the power of their unified front. Sophie Hayssen, Teen Vogue, "'Stranger Things' Season 3 Highlights Max and Eleven's Friendship," 12 July 2019 That, along with Dwight’s allegiance to Kennedy and disillusionment with national politics, grounded his enthusiasm for his military career. John Wenzel, The Denver Post, "A Denver sculptor was the first black man trained as an astronaut ahead of Apollo 11, but he never made it to space," 5 July 2019 Comey’s handling of the FBI’s investigation of Hillary Clinton’s emails is often at the center of their theories, which trace Trump’s legal problems back not to any wrongdoing on his part, but to the political allegiances of top FBI officials. Aaron Rupar, Vox, "James Comey unloads on House Republicans and Fox News," 17 Dec. 2018 Others pledged their allegiance to Rapinoe as their new President. Scottie Andrew And Nadeem Muaddi, CNN, "Megan Rapinoe strikes an epic pose after scoring against France in the Women's World Cup. The internet goes wild," 29 June 2019 Their ceremonial allegiance guarantees a false promise of national consensus. Yohannes Gedamu, Quartz Africa, "The underlying tension behind Ethiopia’s flawed federal system and its risks," 26 June 2019 It’s time to stop using images of those ships without identifying their allegiance to Beijing. Christopher R. O'dea, National Review, "How China Weaponized the Global Supply Chain," 20 June 2019 This woman character, hailing from an unnamed Middle Eastern country, was introduced to a select group of journalists earlier this month at Infinity Ward's Los Angeles-area headquarters, and her military allegiance was left unclear. Sam Machkovech, Ars Technica, "Call of Duty: Modern Warfare," 30 May 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.

See More

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

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about allegiance

Statistics for allegiance

Last Updated

19 Jul 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for allegiance

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

See more words from the same century

Keep scrolling for more

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.

Keep scrolling for more

Comments on allegiance

What made you want to look up allegiance? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

WORD OF THE DAY

something desired as essential

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

What's that Smell?! Quiz

  • wide eyed dog smelling rose
  • Someone who is hircine smells like a:
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

TAKE THE QUIZ
Bee Cubed

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!