dom·​i·​nate | \ ˈdä-mə-ˌnāt \
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 \ -​ˌnā-​tiv \ adjective
dominator \ -​ˌnā-​tər \ 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

On the second-to-last stop of a Mideast tour dominated by questions and concerns from Arab leaders about Trump’s abrupt order to withdraw American troops from Syria, Pompeo had to refer reporters’ questions about the tweet to the White House. Matthew Lee, The Seattle Times, "Trump’s evolving foreign policy challenges top US diplomat," 15 Jan. 2019 Heading in to Thursday morning's Emmy nominations announcement, the category that strikes me as the most interesting and unpredictable is best variety talk series, which is the one dominated by late-night hosts. Scott Feinberg, The Hollywood Reporter, "Emmys: Battle Among Late-Night Talk Hosts Should Make for Morning's Most Suspenseful Reveal," 11 July 2018 In a league dominated by three-point shooting, Fultz went 0-for-1 last season. Marcus Hayes,, "Sixers track Markelle Fultz's, Ben Simmons' shooting with sports science app | Marcus Hayes," 10 July 2018 Looking down or not making eye contact Even in a world dominated by smartphones, eye contact matters. Sophia Gottfried, Time, "The Body Language Mistakes You Don't Realize You're Making at Work, According to Experts," 28 June 2018 Earnhardt dominated from start to finish, leaving Fallon eating crow. Joe Marusak, charlotteobserver, "Jimmy Fallon challenged Dale Earnhardt Jr. to a race on 'Tonight Show.' Big mistake.," 28 June 2018 Alabama and Clemson, meeting in the College Football Playoff for the fourth year in a row, have dominated college football for so long that a prominent player from their first title game is now an insurance salesman. Brian Costa, WSJ, "This Alabama Quarterback Wants to Be Your Insurance Salesman," 6 Jan. 2019 The brand now dominates more than 70 percent of the market. Mary Beth Griggs, The Verge, "Big tobacco just spent $12.8 billion to get a taste of Juul," 20 Dec. 2018 The Guardian’s architecture critic gained remarkable access to the world’s most secretive city, examined here alongside over 300 of Wainwright’s own photos, dominated by symmetrical buildings and sickly pastel hues. Curbed Staff, Curbed, "18 enticing new books on design, cities, and more," 14 Dec. 2018

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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Statistics for dominate

Last Updated

7 Feb 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for dominate

The first known use of dominate was in 1611

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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 \
dominated; dominating

Kids Definition of dominate

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

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