pre·​dom·​i·​nate | \ pri-ˈdä-mə-nət How to pronounce predominate (audio) \

Definition of predominate

 (Entry 1 of 2)


pre·​dom·​i·​nate | \ pri-ˈdä-mə-ˌnāt How to pronounce predominate (audio) \
predominated; predominating; predominates

Definition of predominate (Entry 2 of 2)

intransitive verb

1 : to hold advantage in numbers or quantity
2 : to exert controlling power or influence : prevail

transitive verb

: to exert control over : dominate

Other Words from predominate


predomination \ pri-​ˌdä-​mə-​ˈnā-​shən How to pronounce predominate (audio) \ noun

Predominant vs. Predominate


Predominant and predominate are synonymous adjectives. Predominant is the older and much more common form. A number of handbooks and commentators hold predominate to be a mistake—a few insisting that the word is only a verb. But they are wrong. As an adjective predominate is somewhat more likely to turn up in technical writing than in general writing. The adverbs predominantly and predominately are a more even match in frequency than their base adjectives are, although predominantly is still significantly more common than predominately.

Examples of predominate in a Sentence

Adjective the predominate color in the painting the predominate reason for the change Verb Older people predominate in that neighborhood.
Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective Of course, the predominate Blackness of the cast sets the film apart from other Westerns, which all but erase African Americans from that part of history. Lester Fabian Brathwaite,, 18 Mar. 2022 Islam is the predominate religion across the archipelago, which is reflected in the early morning calls-to-prayer, as well as the local dress. Summer Rylander, Travel + Leisure, 20 Feb. 2022 The result is for vanilla lovers, which is the predominate flavor, with delicate pepper and ginger spices and a toffee finish. Gina Pace, Forbes, 24 Dec. 2021 Growth investing has been the predominate strategy in the last five years (see Chart of the Day). Jj Kinahan, Forbes, 7 Dec. 2021 The fast-spreading Delta variant was the predominate strain during the trial. Fortune, 21 Oct. 2021 The latter includes six majority Black districts, two majority Hispanic and Latinx and one that does not have any one predominate minority group. Vanessa Swales, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, 1 Oct. 2021 The analysis used a 70 percent threshold for racial groups to determine the predominate racial group in each census tract. Washington Post, 6 Aug. 2021 Most cases – new and existing – are of B.1.1.7, a variant first seen in the United Kingdom that the CDC says could become America's predominate version in March. Elinor Aspegren, USA TODAY, 1 Mar. 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Even so, the interior design is stark and hard plastics predominate. Joe Lorio, Car and Driver, 6 May 2022 While large detached homes predominate, this small street includes a cluster of apartment buildings. New York Times, 9 Feb. 2022 Over the next several years, the number of Syrians declined to a tiny fraction of the 2015 peak, while the number of irregular migrants from North and sub-Saharan Africa gradually came to predominate. New York Times, 2 Mar. 2022 The ancient farmers who came to predominate after most of the tribes like the Hadza disappeared didn’t have it any easier. Washington Post, 17 Dec. 2021 Manufacturers reformulate the flu vaccine each year to include the four viral strains that the World Health Organization and U.S. Food and Drug Administration anticipate will predominate in the coming season. Tara Haelle, Scientific American, 25 Jan. 2022 London planetrees predominate, as do honey locusts, pin oaks, Norway maples and Callery pears, the latter known for their clusters of white flowers. New York Times, 12 Feb. 2022 Al-Qurayshi is from the part of Iraq where ethnic Turkmen, rather than Arabs, predominate. NBC News, 4 Feb. 2022 This China wishes to dictate the terms of its relations with other nations, to ensure its interests predominate. Michael Schuman, The Atlantic, 2 Feb. 2022 See More

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

First Known Use of predominate


1591, in the meaning defined above


1589, in the meaning defined at sense 2

History and Etymology for predominate


alteration of predominant


Medieval Latin praedominatus, past participle of praedominari

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Time Traveler for predominate

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The first known use of predominate was in 1589

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Last Updated

26 Mar 2022

Cite this Entry

“Predominate.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 25 May. 2022.

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More Definitions for predominate


pre·​dom·​i·​nate | \ pri-ˈdä-mə-ˌnāt How to pronounce predominate (audio) \
predominated; predominating

Kids Definition of predominate

: to be greater than others in number, frequency, strength, influence, or authority In this forest, pine trees predominate.


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