personal union


: a union of two states constituted by their becoming subject to the same personal ruler without loss of independent sovereignty

Examples of personal union in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web The Kingdom of Hanover had a personal union with the United Kingdom beginning in 1814, but ended in 1837 due to Salic law (if there were male heirs, a woman could not inherit the title). Town & Country, 4 May 2023 Queen Isabella of Castile and King Ferdinand of Aragon forged the identity of the Spanish nation through their personal union, which bound together what had been disparate and fractious kingdoms. Razib Khan, National Review, 31 July 2021

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'personal union.' 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

1864, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of personal union was in 1864

Dictionary Entries Near personal union

Cite this Entry

“Personal union.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 18 Jul. 2024.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!