states·​man | \ ˈstāts-mən How to pronounce statesman (audio) \

Definition of statesman

1 : one versed in the principles or art of government especially : one actively engaged in conducting the business of a government or in shaping its policies
2 : a wise, skillful, and respected political leader

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Other Words from statesman

statesmanlike \ ˈstāts-​mən-​ˌlīk How to pronounce statesman (audio) \ adjective
statesmanly \ ˈstāts-​mən-​lē How to pronounce statesman (audio) \ adjective
statesmanship \ ˈstāts-​mən-​ˌship How to pronounce statesman (audio) \ noun

Examples of statesman in a Sentence

He was a soldier and statesman.
Recent Examples on the Web Larry King was a giant of broadcasting and a master of the TV celebrity/statesman-woman interview. Rebecca Alter, Vulture, "Wolf Blitzer, Bill Clinton, More Stars and Colleagues Pay Tribute to Larry King," 23 Jan. 2021 Larry King was a giant of broadcasting and a master of the TV celebrity/statesman-woman interview. Chron, "The world is remembering legendary Larry King," 23 Jan. 2021 An American statesman and lawyer, Sherman is the only person to have signed all four great state papers of the United States: the Continental Association, the Declaration of Independence, the Articles of Confederation, and the Constitution. Melanie Savage,, "Liverant Antiques celebrates 100 years," 28 Dec. 2020 The myth of the business reformer rests on two foundations: the business statesman and the disruptive entrepreneur. Kyle Edward Williams, The New Republic, "The End of the Businessman President," 9 Dec. 2020 Luke was a true statesman committed to making Louisiana better. Staff Report,, "Reactions to Congressman-elect Luke Letlow's death: 'COVID-19 can kill.' He had 'passion to serve.'," 29 Dec. 2020 Chang, who retired in 2018, is regarded in Taiwan as a Steve Jobs- or Bill Gates-type figure and often asked to step in as a statesman on economic affairs. Los Angeles Times, "The most important company you’ve never heard of is being dragged into the U.S.-China rivalry," 17 Dec. 2020 The Trump administration has prioritized strengthening Israel’s diplomatic position in the Middle East, helping burnish right-wing Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s credentials as a regional statesman. Ishaan Tharoor, Washington Post, "Trump’s parting gift to Morocco," 14 Dec. 2020 The German statesman Wilhelm von Humboldt saw education as a way to realize individual possibility rather than, as tradition would have it, train for an occupation or a social role. William Anthony Hay, WSJ, "Conservatism and Liberalism: Two Books on the Great Divide," 4 Dec. 2020

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

1592, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Time Traveler for statesman

Time Traveler

The first known use of statesman was in 1592

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Statistics for statesman

Last Updated

19 Feb 2021

Cite this Entry

“Statesman.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 25 Feb. 2021.

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English Language Learners Definition of statesman

: a usually wise, skilled, and respected government leader


states·​man | \ ˈstāts-mən How to pronounce statesman (audio) \
plural statesmen\ -​mən \

Kids Definition of statesman

: a usually wise, skilled, and respected government leader

More from Merriam-Webster on statesman

Nglish: Translation of statesman for Spanish Speakers

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