con·​quer | \ ˈkäŋ-kər How to pronounce conquer (audio) \
conquered; conquering\ ˈkäŋ-​k(ə-​)riŋ How to pronounce conquer (audio) \

Definition of conquer

transitive verb

1 : to gain or acquire by force of arms : subjugate conquer territory
2 : to overcome by force of arms : vanquish conquered the enemy
3 : to gain mastery over or win by overcoming obstacles or opposition conquered the mountain
4 : to overcome by mental or moral power : surmount conquered her fear

intransitive verb

: to be victorious

Keep scrolling for more

Choose the Right Synonym for conquer

conquer, vanquish, defeat, subdue, reduce, overcome, overthrow mean to get the better of by force or strategy. conquer implies gaining mastery of. Caesar conquered Gaul vanquish implies a complete overpowering. vanquished the enemy and ended the war defeat does not imply the finality or completeness of vanquish which it otherwise equals. the Confederates defeated the Union forces at Manassas subdue implies a defeating and suppression. subdued the native tribes after years of fighting reduce implies a forcing to capitulate or surrender. the city was reduced after a month-long siege overcome suggests getting the better of with difficulty or after hard struggle. overcame a host of bureaucratic roadblocks overthrow stresses the bringing down or destruction of existing power. violently overthrew the old regime

Examples of conquer in a Sentence

And my girlfriends are really strong, feminine women—yet we can all be girls together. Some days we just have to go out and shop, get a massage …  . The next day we want to conquer the world and start our own company. — Sandra Bullock, quoted in Playboy, September 1995 After her initial passionate prayer of thanks for the strength to conquer her vast disappointment, she stayed on her knees, the hassock comfortable … — James Clavell, Gai-Jin, (1993) 1994 It used to be that men "conquered" mountains in a cacophony of gratuitous chest-thumping. — Tim Cahill, New York Times Book Review, 10 June 1990 But however vile the movie, the sentiments it embodies are (as they say) American as apple pie: the west was something to be conquered and claimed. — Margaret Atwood, Survival, 1972 The city was conquered by the ancient Romans. They conquered all their enemies. He finally conquered his drug habit. Scientists believe the disease can be conquered.
See More
Recent Examples on the Web The mass availability of a vaccine with even a 69 percent efficacy rate could help the world conquer the coronavirus. New York Times, "U.S. Health Officials Question AstraZeneca Vaccine Trial Results," 23 Mar. 2021 Love may not conquer all for one married couple who split up after the wife was identified by investigators as someone who participated in the U.S. Capitol siege on Jan. 6. Carly Roman, Washington Examiner, "Detective files for divorce from wife charged over Capitol Hill riot," 22 Mar. 2021 Think about deliberately taking action to conquer your self-doubt. Jeryl Brunner, Forbes, "How To Support Women In The Workforce. CareerBuilder’s President Offers Her Guidance.," 28 Feb. 2021 Stow it in your glove compartment, pack it in your luggage, or stash it in a drawer at work to conquer a sudden clothing mishap. Popular Science, "Essential repair kits to save you money and make your favorite products last," 1 Dec. 2020 But as the coronavirus pandemic rages on, and lockdowns persist, the company is taking inspiration from the delivery tricycles of its early years to conquer one final frontier: ice cream delivered to your home, on demand. CNN, "This company conquered the ice cream market. Home delivery is the final frontier," 14 Nov. 2020 Though defeated for now, the evil tyrant Shang Tsung (Chin Han) declared that he was not done trying to conquer Earth, and would return not just with warriors but with armies. Christian Holub,, "Ryan Reynolds teases Mortal Kombat fans by posing as Johnny Cage," 29 Apr. 2021 This is particularly true when those parts are spread in divisions which conquer the world by quadrant, host events on varied continents and move both entertainment to the people and people to the entertainment. Eric Fuller, Forbes, "Dan Beckerman, CEO Of AEG Is Fired Up. It’s Go Time For Live Entertainment.," 28 Apr. 2021 In order to qualify for the playoffs, the Stars will have to conquer the road. Matthew Defranks, Dallas News, "To make the playoffs, the Stars will have to conquer their longest road trip in nearly 20 years," 28 Apr. 2021

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'conquer.' 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 conquer

14th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

History and Etymology for conquer

Middle English, to acquire, conquer, from Anglo-French conquerre, from Vulgar Latin *conquaerere, alteration of Latin conquirere to search for, collect, from com- + quaerere to ask, search

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about conquer

Time Traveler for conquer

Time Traveler

The first known use of conquer was in the 14th century

See more words from the same century

Statistics for conquer

Last Updated

16 May 2021

Cite this Entry

“Conquer.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 17 May. 2021.

Style: MLA
MLACheck Mark Icon ChicagoCheck Mark Icon APACheck Mark Icon Merriam-WebsterCheck Mark Icon

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for conquer



English Language Learners Definition of conquer

: to take control of (a country, city, etc.) through the use of force
: to defeat (someone or something) through the use of force
: to gain control of (a problem or difficulty) through great effort


con·​quer | \ ˈkäŋ-kər How to pronounce conquer (audio) \
conquered; conquering

Kids Definition of conquer

1 : to get or gain by force : win by fighting
2 : overcome sense 1 She worked hard to conquer her fears.

Comments on conquer

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


Test Your Vocabulary

Words Used by Nabokov Quiz

  • image1676440788
  • Choose the best definition or synonym for the word in bold: "There are some eructations that sound like cheers—at least, mine did." Lolita
True or False

Test your knowledge - and maybe learn something along the way.

 AlphaBear 2

Spell words. Make bears.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

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