empire

noun em·pire \ ˈem-ˌpī(-ə)r \
|Updated on: 19 Aug 2018

Definition of empire

1 a (1) : a major political unit having a territory of great extent or a number of territories or peoples under a single sovereign authority; especially : one having an emperor as chief of state
(2) : the territory of such a political unit
b : something resembling a political empire; especially : an extensive territory or enterprise under single domination or control
2 : imperial sovereignty, rule, or dominion
3 capitalized
[Empire State, nickname for New York]
: a juicy apple with dark red skin that is a cross between a McIntosh apple and a Red Delicious apple

Examples of empire in a Sentence

  1. She built a tiny business into a worldwide empire.

  2. He controlled a cattle empire in the heart of Texas.

Recent Examples of empire from the Web

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'empire.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

Origin and Etymology of empire

Middle English, "supreme power, position of an emperor, territory under an emperor's rule," borrowed from Anglo-French, going back to Latin imperium "authority over family members and slaves exercised by the head of a household, supreme administrative authority, dominion, power exercised by a Roman emperor," from imperāre "to give orders, exercise authority, hold political power" + -ium, deverbal suffix of function or state — more at emperor


Empire

adjective Em·pire \ ˈäm-ˌpir , ˈem-ˌpī(-ə)r \

Definition of Empire

: of, relating to, or characteristic of a style (as of clothing or furniture) popular in early 19th century France

Origin and Etymology of empire

French, from (le premier) Empire the first Empire of France

Other Furniture and Woodworking Terms


EMPIRE Defined for Kids

empire

noun em·pire \ ˈem-ˌpīr \

Definition of empire for Students

1 : a group of territories or peoples under one ruler
  • the Roman empire
2 : a country whose ruler is called an emperor


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