scep·​ter | \ˈsep-tər \

Definition of scepter 

(Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a staff or baton borne by a sovereign as an emblem of authority

2 : royal or imperial authority : sovereignty


sceptered; sceptering\ˈsep-​t(ə-​)riŋ \

Definition of scepter (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

: to invest with the scepter in token of royal authority

Illustration of scepter

Illustration of scepter


scepter 1

In the meaning defined above

Examples of scepter in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

The gown was finished with the organization's traditional Medici collar, mantle, necklace, earrings and scepter. Sue Strachan,, "Krewe of Dorians bal masque continues a tradition," 10 Feb. 2018 At the other end of the spectrum, his mother-in-law, Dolly Ann Souchon Johnsen, was a former queen of Carnival who taught make-believe monarchs to walk, wave and wield their scepters. Contributing Writer,, "What do Barq's and James Bond have in common? This guy.," 4 Apr. 2018 Queen Isabel also wore the organization's Medici collar and mantle, while her custom crown and scepter were by Moan's Couture. Sue Strachan,, "Krewe of Hermes glittering 79th annual ball," 27 Feb. 2018 Foy, who scooped up both Golden Globe and SAG awards as Elizabeth, will hand over her scepter to Olivia Colman, and Margaret will transform from Kirby into Helena Bonham Carter. Lisa Rosen,, "The sisters behind 'The Crown' bonded with each other, along with their royal roles," 23 May 2018 The Avengers recover Loki’s scepter at the beginning of Avengers: Age of Ultron. Eliana Dockterman, Time, "Everything to Know About Marvel’s Infinity Stones Before You See Avengers: Infinity War," 24 Apr. 2018 In bright purples, reds, and golds, these fashion renditions are further adorned in golden jewelry, scepters, and crowns. Connie Wang,, "The Met Got The Catholic Fashion Story Wrong," 7 May 2018 The figure, which was said to dwarf visitors to the temple, sat on a massive throne, clad in a golden robe covered in a relief of animals and lilies and clutching a massive golden scepter., "Has the Best Art in the World Been Destroyed?," 2 May 2018 The Mind Stone: Once owned by Thanos, who lent it to Loki for his magic scepter. Gary Thompson,, "What are the infinity stones that drive the plot of 'Avengers: Infinity War'?," 25 Apr. 2018

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


14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1526, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for scepter


Middle English sceptre, from Anglo-French septre, from Latin sceptrum, from Greek skēptron staff, scepter, from skēptesthai to prop oneself — more at shaft

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Statistics for scepter

Last Updated

27 Nov 2018

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Time Traveler for scepter

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

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More Definitions for scepter



English Language Learners Definition of scepter

: a long decorated stick that is carried by a king or queen


scep·​ter | \ˈsep-tər \

Kids Definition of scepter

: a rod carried by a ruler as a sign of authority a royal scepter

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More from Merriam-Webster on scepter

Spanish Central: Translation of scepter

Nglish: Translation of scepter for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of scepter for Arabic Speakers Encyclopedia article about scepter

Comments on scepter

What made you want to look up scepter? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


to move with a clumsy heavy tread

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