king

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noun \ ˈkiŋ \
Updated on: 11 Sep 2017

Definition of king

1 a :a male monarch of a major territorial unit; especially :one whose position is hereditary and who rules for life
b :a paramount chief
2 capitalized :god, christ
  • … to worship the King, the Lord of hosts …
  • —Zechariah 14:16 (Revised Standard Version)
3 :one that holds a preeminent position; especially :a chief among competitors
  • the cattle kings rode up from the south
  • —Alan Moorehead
  • even if no longer king, cotton remains the chief cash crop
  • —Howell Walker
4 :the principal piece of each color in chess having the power to move ordinarily one square in any direction and to capture opposing pieces but being obliged never to enter or remain in check
5 :a playing card marked with a stylized figure of a king
6 :a checker that has been crowned

Examples of king in a Sentence

  1. He pledged his loyalty to the king and queen.

  2. the reign of King James

  3. He became king at a young age.

  4. He's widely regarded as the king of soul music.

  5. He was voted king of the prom.

  6. The lion is known as the king of the jungle.

  7. She won the game by checkmating his king.

Recent Examples of king from the Web

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

Origin and Etymology of king

Middle English, from Old English cyning; akin to Old High German kuning king, Old English cynn kin

Other Foreign Functionary Terms


King

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biographical name \ ˈkiŋ \

Definition of King

B. B. 1925–2015 originally Riley B. King American blues musician

King

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Definition of King

Billie Jean 1943–     née Moffitt American tennis player

King

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Definition of King

Ernest Joseph 1878–1956 American admiral

King

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Definition of King

Martin Luther, Jr. 1929–1968 American clergyman and civil rights leader

King

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Definition of King

Rufus 1755–1827 American politician and diplomat

King

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Definition of King

Stephen (Edwin) 1947–     American writer

King

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Definition of King

William Lyon Mackenzie 1874–1950 Canadian statesman; prime minister (1921–26; 1926–30; 1935–48)

King

biographical name

Definition of King

William Rufus de Vane 1786–1853 American politician; vice president of the U.S. (1853)


KING Defined for English Language Learners

king

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noun

Definition of king for English Language Learners

  • : a male ruler of a country who usually inherits his position and rules for life

  • : a boy or man who is highly respected and very successful or popular

  • : a boy or man who is awarded the highest honor for an event or contest


KING Defined for Kids

king

play
noun \ ˈkiŋ \

Definition of king for Students

1 :a male ruler of a country who usually inherits his position and rules for life
2 :a person or thing that is better or more important than all others
  • the king of jazz
3 :the chief piece in the game of chess
4 :a playing card bearing the picture of a king
5 :a piece in checkers that has reached the opponent's back row


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