mis·​rule | \ ˌmis-ˈrül How to pronounce misrule (audio) \
misruled; misruling; misrules

Definition of misrule

 (Entry 1 of 2)

transitive verb

: to rule incompetently : misgovern



Definition of misrule (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : the action of misruling : the condition of being misruled

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Examples of misrule in a Sentence

Verb accused of misruling his island nation to the point of economic collapse Noun The people of that country have endured many years of misrule. the country's long period of misrule had made it a hotbed for terrorist organizations
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Recent Examples on the Web: Verb But for as long as Mr Assad is allowed to misrule Syria, most aid money would be better spent helping its neighbours. The Economist, "Syria will poison the region for years to come," 5 Sep. 2019 The Zaire of the 1970s had already started a long, steady descent under Mobutu’s misrule that led to its economic collapse and civil war two decades later. The Economist, "Sticky fingersThe dictators who ruined Africa," 11 Jan. 2018 The power is the right to misrule a country without concern for the general welfare of nations or its own citizens. Mark Sappenfield, The Christian Science Monitor, "Refusing to honor fear," 4 Sep. 2017 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Unfortunately, this country has become stymied in corruption, in nepotism and in misrule. New York Times, "Divided Kingdom: Jordan Shaken by Split Between King and Ex-Crown Prince," 4 Apr. 2021 Biden’s election can be more than a repudiation of Trumpian misrule. Timothy Noah, The New Republic, "The End of the 40-Year War on Government," 21 Jan. 2021 But the discontent against Indira Gandhi’s misrule helped to revive its image. New York Times, "India’s Leading Documentary Filmmaker Has a Warning," 1 Dec. 2020 The demonstration was part of a wave of protests sweeping Lebanon against corruption and misrule by a group of politicians who have monopolized power since the country's civil war ended three decades ago. Star Tribune, "In Lebanon, army courts target anti-government protesters," 22 Nov. 2020 Previous examples of incredible Republican amorality and misrule were by this definition normal—and yearning for those times seems to render the wrong judgment of the pre-Trump era, as well as the potential post-Trump future. Libby Watson, The New Republic, "Ben Sasse Is a Fraud," 16 Oct. 2020 Places that once seemed the oasis of calm and decency, now extolled as examples of chaos and misrule. Nick Paton Walsh, CNN, "The Trump-Biden debate cast America as victim, not global leader," 30 Sep. 2020 More broadly, Lukashenko’s efforts highlight just how much his brand of dictatorial misrule has infected regimes both near and far. Casey Michel, The New Republic, "Alexander Lukashenko’s Belarusian Dictatorship Is Going Down in Flames," 10 Aug. 2020 Humor, absurdity and misrule are the perfect themes of today. BostonGlobe.com, "Horoscope," 30 July 2020

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

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First Known Use of misrule


14th century, in the meaning defined above


14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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The first known use of misrule was in the 14th century

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Cite this Entry

“Misrule.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/misrule. Accessed 7 May. 2021.

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English Language Learners Definition of misrule

: bad government

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