mis·​gov·​ern ˌmis-ˈgə-vərn How to pronounce misgovern (audio)
misgoverned; misgoverning

transitive verb

: to rule or govern in a corrupt, wrong, or incompetent way
… but the success of the American Revolution is part of what encouraged French commoners to overthrow the noble class that had misgoverned them for generations.Ariel Bernier

Examples of misgovern in a Sentence

the ruling party was soundly defeated at the polls for having disastrously misgoverned the country
Recent Examples on the Web But a ruling class that systematically blinds itself to the most profound longings of human beings will misunderstand and misgovern those under its sway. Benjamin and Jenna Storey, WSJ, 12 Oct. 2021

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

Word History

First Known Use

15th century, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of misgovern was in the 15th century

Dictionary Entries Near misgovern

Cite this Entry

“Misgovern.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/misgovern. Accessed 22 Jun. 2024.

Kids Definition


: to govern badly
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