mil·​i·​ta·​rism ˈmi-lə-tə-ˌri-zəm How to pronounce militarism (audio)
: predominance of the military class or its ideals
: exaltation of military virtues and ideals
: a policy of aggressive military preparedness
militarist noun or adjective
militaristic adjective
militaristically adverb

Example Sentences

The administration has been criticized for the militarism of its foreign policy.
Recent Examples on the Web Despite a radical-right minority, Germany is largely defined by its aversion to extreme nationalism and militarism. James Angelos, New York Times, 24 Jan. 2023 The speech condemns militarism and extravagant military spending. Susan Dunne, Hartford Courant, 9 Jan. 2023 On a global scale, the United States exports policing tactics and militarism that inflicts disability as a tactic to gain imperial and colonial advantages. A.h. Reaume, Longreads, 10 Feb. 2022 The dark side of liberalism is its blindness to the threats of oppressive economic power, its blindness to militarism and imperialism abroad. Patrick J. Deneen, Harper’s Magazine , 5 Jan. 2023 Their instinctive hostility toward authority was exacerbated by wartime incarceration and the brutality of the conflict, which only confirmed their view of government as a source of tyranny and militarism rather than justice and equality. Daniel Akst, WSJ, 7 Dec. 2022 For years, the Republicans have been the party more inclined to militarism and hawkish foreign policy. Ishaan Tharoor, Washington Post, 5 Nov. 2022 Neoconservatives are the right-wing block of a foreign policy establishment that has tended toward militarism and hawkishness, typified by the George W. Bush administration and people like Bill Kristol, John Bolton, and Lindsey Graham. Blaise Malley, The New Republic, 1 Sep. 2022 Banksy is known for his unique style of stenciling and for his profound statements on migration, militarism and modern politics. Anna Kaufman, USA TODAY, 10 Sep. 2022 See More

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

Word History

First Known Use

1863, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Time Traveler
The first known use of militarism was in 1863

Dictionary Entries Near militarism

Cite this Entry

“Militarism.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 9 Feb. 2023.

Kids Definition


mil·​i·​ta·​rism ˈmil-ə-tə-ˌriz-əm How to pronounce militarism (audio)
: control or rule by a military class
: extreme admiration and praise of military virtues and ideals
: a policy of aggressive military readiness
militarist noun
militaristic adjective
Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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