dominant

adjective
dom·​i·​nant | \ ˈdä-mə-nənt , ˈdäm-nənt\

Definition of dominant

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : commanding, controlling, or prevailing over all others the dominant culture
b : very important, powerful, or successful a dominant theme a dominant industry the team's dominant performance
2 : overlooking and commanding from a superior position a dominant hill
3 : of, relating to, or exerting ecological or genetic dominance dominant genes dominant and recessive traits
4 biology : being the one of a pair of bodily structures that is the more effective or predominant in action dominant eye used her dominant hand

dominant

noun

Definition of dominant (Entry 2 of 2)

1 music : the fifth tone of a major or minor scale (see scale entry 6 sense 2)
2a genetics : a character or factor that exerts genetic dominance (see dominance sense 1b)
b ecology : any of one or more kinds of organism (such as a species) in an ecological community that exerts a controlling influence on the environment and thereby largely determines what other kinds of organisms are present dominant conifers
c sociology : an individual having a controlling, prevailing, or powerful position in a social hierarchy : a dominant (see dominant entry 1 sense 1) individual in a social hierarchy

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Other Words from dominant

Adjective

dominantly adverb

Choose the Right Synonym for dominant

Adjective

dominant, predominant, paramount, preponderant mean superior to all others in influence or importance. dominant applies to something that is uppermost because ruling or controlling. a dominant social class predominant applies to something that exerts, often temporarily, the most marked influence. a predominant emotion paramount implies supremacy in importance, rank, or jurisdiction. unemployment was the paramount issue in the campaign preponderant applies to an element or factor that outweighs all others in influence or effect. preponderant evidence in her favor

Examples of dominant in a Sentence

Adjective

The company is now dominant in its market. It is the dominant culture in the region. the dominant female of the pack
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Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

Democrats look dominant in the Illinois governor’s race and in Minnesota’s Senate and governor elections, poised to score important victories in the bluest Midwestern states. Ella Nilsen, Vox, "Bustos will focus her attention on Middle America ahead of 2020.," 29 Nov. 2018 And more than one racing series has found out the hard way that a spending arms race can make for bad entertainment if one team becomes especially dominant. Jonathan M. Gitlin, Ars Technica, "From efficiency to airflow, it’s a golden age for racing tech in our driveways," 23 Nov. 2018 The organization, which oversees the Academy Awards, is in the midst of an initiative to diversify its white male-dominant voting membership. Nardine Saad, latimes.com, "Actress Emmanuelle Seigner slams invitation to join Academy, pens open letter in support of husband Roman Polanski," 8 July 2018 LeBron James’ move to Los Angeles is expected to have more than just an impact on the Lakers — a once-dominant team that has sagged in recent years. Sarah Gray, Fortune, "Why LeBron James' Move to Los Angeles Could Boost the City's Economy," 3 July 2018 Then there are the Houston Rockets, whose odd combination of ball-dominant guard stars, James Harden and Chris Paul, and all those hard-working role players, pushed the Warriors to the seven-game limit in the conference finals. Michael Powell, New York Times, "The East Has Fallen Off the Map," 3 July 2018 After four years in the NBA — the last playing second fiddle in Oklahoma City to the most ball-dominant player in league history — Oladipo isn't interested in playing the role of sidekick anymore. Matthew Vantryon, Indianapolis Star, "One year ago, the Victor Oladipo trade happened. Here's how he gave Pacers fans hope again.," 29 June 2018 Cassius was the troop's silverback, the dominant, breeding male gorilla, the dad. Lainey Seyler, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Keepers at Milwaukee County Zoo worked 24/7 to care for baby gorilla after its parents died," 29 June 2018 In New Orleans, Alcantara was steady but not dominant, finishing at least five innings in his last 12 starts, turning in walk-free performances just twice and not eclipsing seven strikeouts since his first start of the season on April 7. Matthew Defranks, Sun-Sentinel.com, "Sandy Alcantara 'can’t wait to get out there' for Marlins debut Friday night," 28 June 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Knowing that, the non-dominant is always paying attention to those in power and what is going on around them. Kellee Terrell, Harper's BAZAAR, "Jen McGowan's Feminist Horror Rust Creek Is Exactly What Hollywood Needs Right Now," 22 Jan. 2019 Its once-dominant Hepatitis C franchise, which turned Gilead into one of the most important drug companies in the world earlier this decade, is now in decline. Charley Grant, WSJ, "Gilead Looks Outside to Revive Growth," 10 Dec. 2018 As the first half progressed, and with England dominant, the opportunity was there to put the game away. Martin Rogers, USA TODAY, "Croatia tops England in extra time to reach World Cup final," 11 July 2018 High pressure remaining dominant also means clouds should be few and far between. Ian Livingston, Washington Post, "D.C.-area forecast: Seasonable warmth of today trends to potentially dangerous heat by Monday," 16 June 2018 The Mavericks have the ball-dominant Dennis Smith in place, and the possibility of pairing him with Ayton, Bagley or Jaren Jackson Jr. somewhere in this range is tantalizing. Jeremy Woo, SI.com, "2018 NBA Draft Lottery Guide: What Are Your Team's Chances?," 14 May 2018 Though once dominant in the classroom, Apple has slipped behind Google and Microsoft in recent years, which sell lower cost tablets and laptops that better fit tight school budgets. Edward C. Baig, USA TODAY, "Apple unveils new $299 iPad for students--supports AR, Apple Pencil," 27 Mar. 2018 Early in January, the previous version of this team went through growing pains trying to integrate ball-dominant Isaiah Thomas. Chris Fedor, cleveland.com, "LeBron James splits defenders with fancy behind-the-back dribble through Tristan Thompson's legs (video)," 2 Mar. 2018 Not that the Steelers wouldn't take a dominant, Brown-esque day of production from Martavis Bryant or JuJu Smith-Schuster, but Pittsburgh is probably going to depend on a by-committee approach accentuated by some sporadic playmaking. Jacob Klinger | Jklinger@pennlive.com, cleveland.com, "Steelers vs Texans: 6 keys to Pittsburgh beating Houston," 24 Dec. 2017

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

Adjective

circa 1532, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Noun

1819, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for dominant

Adjective and Noun

Middle French or Latin; Middle French, from Latin dominant-, dominans, present participle of dominari — see dominate

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Statistics for dominant

Last Updated

5 Feb 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for dominant

The first known use of dominant was circa 1532

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More Definitions for dominant

dominant

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of dominant

: more important, powerful, or successful than most or all others
: most common
biology : causing or relating to a characteristic or condition that a child will have if one of the child's parents has it

dominant

adjective
dom·​i·​nant | \ ˈdä-mə-nənt \

Kids Definition of dominant

1 : controlling or being more powerful or important than all others The team is dominant in its league.
2 : being or produced by a form of a gene that prevents or hides the effect of another form A dominant gene produces brown eye color.

dominant

adjective
dom·​i·​nant | \ -nənt \

Medical Definition of dominant

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : exerting forcefulness or having dominance in a social hierarchy
2 : being the one of a pair of bodily structures that is the more effective or predominant in action the dominant eye
3 : of, relating to, or exerting genetic dominance

Other Words from dominant

dominantly adverb

dominant

noun

Medical Definition of dominant (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : a dominant genetic character or factor
2 : a dominant individual in a social hierarchy

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