heg·​e·​mon ˈhe-jə-ˌmän How to pronounce hegemon (audio)
: something (such as a political state) having dominant influence or authority over others : one possessing hegemony
These were the periods in which England and then America filled the role of hegemonRobert Heilbroner
The American self-image of a mighty power that is also a benign hegemon, the global custodian of democratic values and human rights, is deeply rooted.Allister Sparks

Examples of hegemon in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web The fragmentation of global order, skeptics warned, could lead to China’s emergence as a hegemon in its neighborhood and the most potent power in Eurasia—with Russia playing the role of a subservient vassal for many years to come. Alexander Gabuev, Foreign Affairs, 9 Apr. 2024 The United States is an uninterested, ineffective hegemon, and its great-power rivals even more so. Gregg Carlstrom, Foreign Affairs, 6 Mar. 2024 His basic belief is that the United States is a rogue hegemon that unfairly has too much international power and influence. Stuart Anderson, Forbes, 19 Feb. 2024 History shows that regional hegemons regularly restrict rivals’ economic prospects. Andrew S. Erickson, Foreign Affairs, 16 Feb. 2024 The objective instead was to make diversity a weapon against a rival bent on suppressing it: to use the resistance to uniformity embedded within distinctive histories, cultures, and faiths as a barrier against the homogenizing ambitions of would-be hegemons. Hal Brands, Foreign Affairs, 19 Oct. 2021 Drained since by the war in Ukraine, Russia has been less the hegemon that Mr. Putin imagined — an indispensable power capable of knocking heads together until all sides come to their senses — than a distracted spectator of events across its former Soviet dominion. Andrew Higgins, New York Times, 21 Sep. 2023 For many years after the end of the Cold War, the United States played the role of a benign hegemon, stabilizing the global system, providing public goods, and fostering multilateral problem solving. Roland Rich, Foreign Affairs, 22 Aug. 2023 The rise of new technology and a retreating hegemon are a combustible combination. Kenneth M. Pollack, Foreign Affairs, 19 Apr. 2022

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'hegemon.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


Greek hēgemōn

First Known Use

1904, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of hegemon was in 1904

Dictionary Entries Near hegemon

Cite this Entry

“Hegemon.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/hegemon. Accessed 19 Apr. 2024.

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