conquer

verb
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

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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.
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Recent Examples on the Web Yet it wasn’t immediately recognized as such by the American public, who tended to view it as a civilian race to space, a grand adventure to conquer this new ocean. Bruce Dorminey, Forbes, 31 May 2021 Jitters and other concerns notwithstanding, instructors like Dean and O’Neal Ellerbe, a former professional skateboarder, find that adults continue to turn out in large numbers to conquer their fears on wheels. New York Times, 16 May 2021 With only one date on the 2021 schedule, this will be the lone opportunity for drivers to conquer the 1-mile concrete oval at Dover International Speedway. Ellen J. Horrow, USA TODAY, 16 May 2021 There’s a fire raging, after all, and a past to confront, and fears to conquer. K. Austin Collins, Rolling Stone, 14 May 2021 And also about being wrong in some way about how to conquer those fears. Natalie Morin, refinery29.com, 13 May 2021 And also about being wrong in some way about how to conquer those fears. Sydney Bucksbaum, EW.com, 12 May 2021 At the beginning, an Angel warns the raging Lucifer that Jesus soon will conquer death and sin. Scott Cantrell, Dallas News, 19 Apr. 2021 But some analysts and Hollywood veterans are increasingly raising a more fundamental point: that the culture of Hollywood may simply be too specific for a non-industry player to conquer it. Washington Post, 22 May 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.

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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

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Time Traveler for conquer

Time Traveler

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

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Statistics for conquer

Last Updated

9 Jun 2021

Cite this Entry

“Conquer.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/conquer. Accessed 15 Jun. 2021.

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More Definitions for conquer

conquer

verb

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

conquer

verb
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.

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