roy·​al | \ ˈrȯi(-ə)l How to pronounce royal (audio) \

Definition of royal

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : of kingly ancestry the royal family
b : of, relating to, or subject to the crown the royal estates
c : being in the crown's service Royal Air Force
2a : suitable for royalty : magnificent
b : requiring no exertion : easy there is no royal road to logic— Justus Buchler
3a : of superior size, magnitude, or quality a patronage of royal dimensions— J. H. Plumb often used as an intensivea royal pain
b : established or chartered by the crown
4 : of, relating to, or being a part (such as a mast, sail, or yard) next above the topgallant



Definition of royal (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : a person of royal blood
2 : a small sail on the royal mast immediately above the topgallant sail
3 : a stag of 8 years or more having antlers with at least 12 points

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Synonyms for royal

Synonyms: Adjective

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Examples of royal in a Sentence

Adjective They received a royal welcome as they stepped off the plane. the school superintendent received a royal welcome Noun magazine stories about the private lives of royals
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Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective Queen Elizabeth’s royal staff has one simple request for visitors near Balmoral: Please stop using the grounds as your own personal bathroom. Stacey Leasca, Travel + Leisure, "Royal Staffers Have One Request: Stop Using the Bathroom Outside the Queen’s Balmoral Castle," 1 July 2020 Only a handful have come down officially, and there was another protest Tuesday afternoon at one of the biggest statues of Léopold on a horse, just outside the wrought-iron fence of the main royal palace in central Brussels. Michael Birnbaum, Washington Post, "Amid anti-racism protests, Belgian king expresses regrets to Congo for colonial brutality," 30 June 2020 The sole American in the cast of the Netflix royal drama, Lithgow won plaudits and another Emmy for his commanding portrayal of British prime minister Winston Churchill. Dan Snierson,, "John Lithgow reveals the roles that fans most recognize him for," 28 June 2020 In photos released Saturday, she is seen wearing a crepe floral midi dress that royal fashion watchers identified as being from Faithfull the Brand with a pair of beige espadrilles, her go-to summer footwear. Morgan Hines, USA TODAY, "After months of Zoom appearances, Duchess Kate joins families to plant garden at children's hospice," 27 June 2020 Visitor numbers are down at the Versailles Palace since the former royal residence west of Paris reopened June 6. Time, "Eiffel Tower Reopens After 104-Day Coronavirus Shutdown," 25 June 2020 The remote spot was chosen to hide lavish royal burials from tomb raiders. National Geographic, "This pharaoh's painted tomb was missing its mummy," 25 June 2020 Another series of posts, which the account stated were in honor of William's birthday on Sunday, showed the royal playing with his three children. Danielle Garrand, CBS News, "From Barack Obama to Kanye West — here's how famous dads are being honored on Father's Day," 21 June 2020 There will be no royal procession, no trophy presentations and none of the pomp and ceremony so closely associated with the event. Ben Church, CNN, "The Queen misses Royal Ascot for the first time in 68 years," 16 June 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Painting cabinets a royal or navy blue with white accents gives a fresh look. Julie Washington, cleveland, "Paint a room, build a fire pit, string solar lights: More stay-at-home projects for summer," 17 June 2020 According to the royal, fatherhood has further spurred his commitment to combating these issues. Charles Trepany, USA TODAY, "Prince Harry warns against 'extinction crisis,' talks making world better for son Archie," 12 June 2020 The Southern District of New York released a statement Monday afternoon blasting the royal’s portrayal of the events. Jerry Dunleavy, Washington Examiner, "DOJ invokes treaty with UK as it seeks interview with Prince Andrew about Jeffrey Epstein," 8 June 2020 In the first public appearance since her coronavirus quarantine, the British royal wears a colorful head scarf, a tweed jacket and a determined look, bypassing a protective helmet. Bryan Alexander, USA TODAY, "Queen Elizabeth, 94, is back in the saddle, riding her pony without a helmet at Windsor Castle," 31 May 2020 Though Harry and Meghan have yet to confirm the rumors, or show off any real details of the house themselves, a look at Perry’s social media accounts gives everyone a little glimpse at the lavish luxury the former royals are now living in. Stacey Leasca, Travel + Leisure, "See Inside the Stunning LA Home Harry and Meghan Are Reportedly Living in Rent-free," 21 May 2020 During the call, the royals met staff and children — and even got to see their arts and crafts projects for Easter. Stephanie Petit,, "Inside Kate Middleton and Prince William's Country Home, Anmer Hall, Where They're Isolating," 5 May 2020 Prince Ahmed, however, has long held unfavorable views of the crown prince and was one of just a few senior princes to abstain from pledging allegiance to him when the young royal sidelined more senior princes to become first in line to the throne. Aya Batrawy,, "Saudis’ arrest of 2 princes called a warning to royal family," 8 Mar. 2020 Being royal is great and all, but if your coat of hair can’t match your coat of arms, what is even the point? Maureen Lee Lenker,, "Timothée Chalamet or Tom Hiddleston? Here’s which Henry V is the true king of our hearts (opinion)," 4 Nov. 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'royal.' 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 royal


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


15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for royal


Middle English roial, from Anglo-French real, roial, from Latin regalis, from reg-, rex king; akin to Old Irish (genitive rīg) king, Sanskrit rājan, Latin regere to rule — more at right

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Time Traveler for royal

Time Traveler

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

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Statistics for royal

Last Updated

5 Jul 2020

Cite this Entry

“Royal.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 5 Jul. 2020.

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More Definitions for royal


How to pronounce royal (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of royal

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: of or relating to a king or queen
used in names of organizations that are supported by or that serve a king or queen
: suitable for a king or queen : elaborate or impressive



English Language Learners Definition of royal (Entry 2 of 2)

informal : a member of a royal family


roy·​al | \ ˈrȯi-əl How to pronounce royal (audio) \

Kids Definition of royal

1 : of or relating to a king or queen : regal a royal wedding
2 : fit for a king or queen We gave the team a royal welcome.

Other Words from royal

royally adverb

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More from Merriam-Webster on royal

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for royal

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with royal

Spanish Central: Translation of royal

Nglish: Translation of royal for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of royal for Arabic Speakers

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