prin·​ci·​pal·​i·​ty | \ ˌprin(t)-sə-ˈpa-lə-tē How to pronounce principality (audio) \
plural principalities

Definition of principality

1a : the state, office, or authority of a prince
b : the position or responsibilities of a principal (as of a school)
2 : the territory or jurisdiction of a prince : the country that gives title to a prince
3 principalities plural : an order of angels — see celestial hierarchy

Examples of principality in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Tennis icon Serena Williams waved the green flag for the 78-lap 2021 race on a 2.07-mile circuit through the streets of the Mediterranean principality bordered by France and Italy. Scott Horner, The Indianapolis Star, 23 May 2022 The first week of May ended with both a bang and a splash: with two days of rain that transformed Washington into a metropolis of moisture, a principality of precipitation. Washington Post, 8 May 2022 Gabrielle Chanel first visited Monaco in 1910 and in 1988 Viard’s predecessor Karl Lagerfeld purchased a summer home in the principality. Sarah Carbonaro, Town & Country, 6 May 2022 The Princess returned to Monaco in early March continuing her treatment in the principality but has not been seen publicly and has not resumed her official functions. Peter Mikelbank,, 17 Apr. 2022 At risk are also relics of the past such as the splendid Saint Sophia Cathedral in Kyiv, founded in the 11th century, at the dawn of the medieval principality of Kievan Rus', to which both Ukraine and Russia have since traced their origins. Cristina Florea, CNN, 4 Apr. 2022 Rainier needed a wife who could have children because, under a 1918 treaty with Paris, the principality would revert to France if his bloodline died out. Laura Blasey, Los Angeles Times, 19 Apr. 2022 The assets tied to Putin's inner circle include an apartment in a Monaco luxury building overlooking the principality's glitzy harbor. Curt Devine, Casey Tolan And Majlie De Puy Kamp, CNN, 17 Mar. 2022 Monaco, the tiny principality in the French Riviera that’s become a playground for Russia’s wealthy, adopted sanctions identical to the EU’s on Tuesday. Allison Morrow, CNN, 2 Mar. 2022 See More

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

First Known Use of principality

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

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

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Dictionary Entries Near principality

principal function


principal line

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Last Updated

3 Jun 2022

Cite this Entry

“Principality.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 28 Jun. 2022.

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More Definitions for principality


prin·​ci·​pal·​i·​ty | \ ˌprin-sə-ˈpa-lə-tē How to pronounce principality (audio) \
plural principalities

Kids Definition of principality

: a small territory that is ruled by a prince the principality of Monaco


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