dom·​i·​nate | \ ˈdä-mə-ˌnāt How to pronounce dominate (audio) \
dominated; dominating

Definition of dominate

transitive verb

1 : rule, control an empire that dominated the world
2 : to exert the supreme determining or guiding influence on the ambition that has dominated his life
3 : to overlook from a superior elevation or command because of superior height or position a hill that dominates the town
4a : to be predominant in sugar maples dominate the forest
b : to have a commanding or preeminent place or position in name brands dominate the market

intransitive verb

1 : to have or exert mastery, control, or preeminence his desire to dominate a dominating factor in industrial growth
2 : to occupy a more elevated or superior position

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Other Words from dominate

dominative \ ˈdä-​mə-​ˌnā-​tiv How to pronounce dominate (audio) \ adjective
dominator \ ˈdä-​mə-​ˌnā-​tər How to pronounce dominate (audio) \ noun

Examples of dominate in a Sentence

One company has dominated the market for years. He dominated her life for many years. His work dominated the art scene last year. Our team dominated throughout the game. Our team dominated play throughout the game.
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Recent Examples on the Web The removal of the 50 cents-per-pack increase that was included in the House budget bill is the latest rejection of a cigarette tax hike by Republicans who dominate the Senate. Tom Davies,, "Blocking of Indiana cigarette tax hike frustrates advocates," 2 Apr. 2021 The timing of the first meeting was deliberate: a week after the full Cabinet was confirmed and a day after Biden released his infrastructure plan, which will likely dominate Washington through the summer and shape next year’s midterm elections., "Biden holds first Cabinet meeting amid infrastructure push," 1 Apr. 2021 Though fruit flies, mice, and nematodes now dominate aging research, some scientists say social insects’ aging behaviors could help dissect aging mechanisms in humans. Joel Goldberg, Science | AAAS, "How life span–shifting insects are reshaping aging research," 1 Apr. 2021 In healthy people, the kinds of microbes that dominate the gut in early adulthood make up a smaller proportion of the microbiome over the ensuing decades, while the percentage of other, less prevalent species rises. Anahad O’connor New York Times, Star Tribune, "A changing gut microbiome may predict how well you age," 1 Apr. 2021 This inward focus, coupled with the vaccine nationalism that has seen wealthy countries dominate the available supply, has created an accessibility gap that Beijing and Moscow have proved all too willing to fill. Yasmeen Serhan, The Atlantic, "Here’s How Russia and China Are Helping the U.S.," 30 Mar. 2021 That broader selection of cars is one of the advantages of Turo, said Haddad, which offers users more than just the economy cars that dominate many traditional rental fleets. Chris Isidore, CNN, "Rental car shortage is a boon for Turo, the Airbnb of cars," 29 Mar. 2021 Andre has imparted lots of it via YouTube clips, but Amari’s first real opportunity to closely watch Woods dominate in real time was during his historic 2019 win. New York Times, "No Longer a ‘Tigress,’ Amari Avery Will Try to Make Augusta Roar," 29 Mar. 2021 As clouds dominate after midnight, a shower or two becomes more and more likely with time. Washington Post, "D.C.-area forecast: Wind advisory accompanies today’s warmth. Tomorrow’s a gem.," 26 Mar. 2021

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

1611, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

History and Etymology for dominate

Latin dominatus, past participle of dominari, from dominus master; akin to Latin domus house — more at dome

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Time Traveler for dominate

Time Traveler

The first known use of dominate was in 1611

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Statistics for dominate

Last Updated

6 Apr 2021

Cite this Entry

“Dominate.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 16 Apr. 2021.

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More Definitions for dominate



English Language Learners Definition of dominate

: to have control of or power over (someone or something)
: to be the most important part of (something)
: to be much more powerful or successful than others in a game, competition, etc.


dom·​i·​nate | \ ˈdä-mə-ˌnāt How to pronounce dominate (audio) \
dominated; dominating

Kids Definition of dominate

: to have a commanding position or controlling power over The mountain dominates the landscape.

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Comments on dominate

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