com·​mo·​dore ˈkä-mə-ˌdȯr How to pronounce commodore (audio)
: a captain in the navy in command of a squadron
: a commissioned officer in the navy formerly ranking above captain and below rear admiral and having an insignia of one star
: the ranking officer commanding a body of merchant ships
: the chief officer of a yacht club or boating association

Examples of commodore in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web And in early December, Capt. James Harney was relieved as commodore of Amphibious Squadron 5, which is based in San Diego. Gary Robbins, San Diego Union-Tribune, 29 Dec. 2023 As commodore, Hoard gets to share the Queen Mary with visitors, taking them on tours and regaling them with stories of her past, present and future. Catherine Garcia, The Week, 3 Sep. 2023 Throughout the exercise, a parade of high-ranking Navy officials — including two rear admirals, a Marine Corps general, and a commodore — visited the vessel to turn up the heat on the crew and its captain. Joaquin Sapien, ProPublica, 23 Nov. 2015 Bayview Yacht Club in Detroit saw its first female commodore in 100 years make the podium, too. Detroit Free Press, 25 July 2023 The Whites-only clubs of D.C. didn’t allow a Black man to launch his boat when Lewis T. Green, a World War I veteran, built his own and went looking for a place to launch it, said Tony Ford, the current commodore of the Seafarers. Petula Dvorak, Washington Post, 6 July 2023 As a past commodore of the San Diego Yacht Club, Trepte was involved in organizing America’s Cup races in the 1980s and ‘90s. U-T Staff, San Diego Union-Tribune, 30 Dec. 2022 On Ireland’s remote West Coast, Daria Blackwell, vice commodore of the Ocean Cruising Club, and her husband, Alex, turned their home into a de facto international command center for long-distance sailors trying to reroute during the first year of pandemic shutdowns. Konrad Putzier, WSJ, 3 May 2022 The current commodore, Capt. Diane M. Byrne, Robb Report, 10 Feb. 2022

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'commodore.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


probably modification of Dutch commandeur commander, from French, from Old French comandeor, from comander to command

First Known Use

1695, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Time Traveler
The first known use of commodore was in 1695

Dictionary Entries Near commodore

Cite this Entry

“Commodore.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 20 Apr. 2024.

Kids Definition


com·​mo·​dore ˈkäm-ə-ˌdō(ə)r How to pronounce commodore (audio)
: a naval commissioned officer with a rank just below that of rear admiral
: the senior captain of a line of merchant ships
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