variants or less commonly tsar or tzar
: emperor
specifically : the ruler of Russia until the 1917 revolution
: one having great power or authority
a banking czar
czardom noun
or less commonly tsardom or tzardom
ˈzär-dəm How to pronounce czar (audio)

Examples of czar in a Sentence

a showbiz czar who is said to be able to make or break a career
Recent Examples on the Web John Mann, the British government’s antisemitism czar, assumed the F.A. would do the same for Israel. Rory Smith, New York Times, 20 Oct. 2023 Mayor Karen Bass’ homelessness czar Mercedes Márquez will be replaced by Lourdes Castro Ramírez. Ryan Fonseca, Los Angeles Times, 4 Oct. 2023 The chain started in Santa Monica as a pizzeria in 1978 and became the first acquisition of budding restaurant czar Bill Chait in the mid-1980s. Laurie Ochoa, Los Angeles Times, 30 Sep. 2023 Mayor Karen Bass’ homelessness czar, Mercedes Márquez, will leave her high-profile post next month, with state housing official Lourdes Castro Ramírez set to succeed her, the mayor’s office announced Monday. Julia Wick, Los Angeles Times, 3 Oct. 2023 China’s economic czar, Vice Premier He Lifeng, will oversee the work led by different agencies in Beijing. Cate Cadell, Washington Post, 22 Sep. 2023 The real czars may be long gone, but for decades, the White House has been doing a good job of keeping the role—or at least the honorific—alive, appointing a director to oversee a particular task or issue, and bestowing the title along with it. Jeffrey Kluger, Time, 15 Sep. 2023 Under the czar, the Bolsheviks had used these seasonal outings as a ruse to conceal their subversive plotting. Yaroslav Trofimov, WSJ, 18 Aug. 2023 Yet his political views remained an object of fascination for many, in part because his younger brother, William J. Bennett, rose to become a prominent conservative voice while serving as education secretary under Ronald Reagan and federal drug czar under Bush. Harrison Smith, Washington Post, 13 Sep. 2023 See More

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

Word History


New Latin czar, from Russian tsar', from Old Russian tsĭsarĭ, from Goth kaisar, from Greek or Latin; Greek, from Latin Caesar — more at caesar

First Known Use

1555, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of czar was in 1555

Dictionary Entries Near czar

Cite this Entry

“Czar.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 29 Nov. 2023.

Kids Definition


variants also tsar or tzar
: the ruler of Russia until the 1917 revolution
: one having great power or authority
a baseball czar
czardom noun
also tsardom or tzardom

Latin czar "czar," from Russian tsar' (same meaning), from early Russian tsǐsarǐ, tsěsarǐ "emperor," from a Germanic word kaisar "emperor," derived from Latin Caesar (title of a line of Roman emperors after Augustus Caesar) see Word History at emperor

More from Merriam-Webster on czar

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