\ ˈzär How to pronounce czar (audio) , ˈ(t)sär How to pronounce czar (audio) \
variants: or less commonly or tzar

Definition of czar

1 : emperor specifically : the ruler of Russia until the 1917 revolution
2 : one having great power or authority a banking czar

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Other Words from czar

czardom or less commonly tsardom or tzardom \ ˈzär-​dəm How to pronounce tzardom (audio) , ˈ(t)sär-​ \ noun

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 As mayor from 1992 to 2010, Mr. Luzhkov oversaw an ambitious municipal overhaul, navigating the difficult transition from Soviet communism to capitalism with a combination of czar-like decisiveness and a flair for populist gestures., "WASHINGTON — Yuri Luzhkov, a former Moscow mayor who presided over the sweeping post-communist transformation of the Russian capital and once seemed positioned to ascend to Russia’s presidency, but who was ousted amid allegations of corruption and abuse of power, died Dec. 10 in Munich. He was 83.," 11 Dec. 2019 As mayor from 1992 to 2010, Mr. Luzhkov oversaw an ambitious municipal overhaul, navigating the difficult transition from Soviet communism to capitalism with a combination of czar-like decisiveness and a flair for populist gestures. David Filipov, Washington Post, "Yuri Luzhkov, transformative Moscow mayor, dies at 83," 10 Dec. 2019 Two years before, Jacob’s brother Misha had escaped the wrath of the czar. Steve West,, "Where are you from? | Opinion," 12 Dec. 2019 Pritzker’s pot czar, former state Sen. Toi Hutchinson, said the program wouldn’t be fully operational by the New Year, with new licensees coming after Jan. 2. cleveland, "General Motors goes back into Lordstown, Ohio: The Flyover," 6 Dec. 2019 Confusingly, the label says it was developed for the Russian czar and his court. Dave Mcintyre, Washington Post, "This exceptional, vibrant Spanish white wine will set you back only $17," 29 Nov. 2019 Built for the Paris Exposition Universelle of 1900, it was named in honor of the father of the visiting Russian czar, Nicholas II. Elaine Sciolino, New York Times, "Knowing Paris by Its Bridges," 4 Nov. 2019 The 64-square-foot painting portrays the Russian czar fleeing the Kremlin on horseback. Julia Boccagno, CBS News, "Stolen Ivan the Terrible painting returned to Ukraine 75 years later," 9 Sep. 2019 Douglas Lute, a three-star Army general who served as a war czar for Afghanistan under the George W. Bush and Barack Obama administrations, said in a 2015 interview, according to the Post. Saphora Smith, NBC News, "U.S. officials misled public on Afghan war, according to Washington Post," 9 Dec. 2019

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

1555, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for czar

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

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Statistics for czar

Last Updated

16 Jan 2020

Cite this Entry

“Czar.” The Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., Accessed 23 January 2020.

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More Definitions for czar


How to pronounce czar (audio) How to pronounce czar (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of czar

: the title of the ruler of Russia before 1917
: a very powerful person in a particular business or activity
used as an unofficial title for the person who is in charge of a government office or department


\ ˈzär \

Kids Definition of czar

: the ruler of Russia before 1917

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More from Merriam-Webster on czar

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for czar

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with czar

Spanish Central: Translation of czar

Nglish: Translation of czar for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of czar for Arabic Speakers Encyclopedia article about czar

Comments on czar

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


out of the ordinary or unreasonable

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