sub·​clan ˈsəb-ˌklan How to pronounce subclan (audio)
variants or sub-clan
plural subclans or sub-clans
: a clan that is part of a larger clan
… clans may contain clans, which are usually called subclans.Marvin Harris
There are six main clans and minority groups, and dozens of subclans.Edmund Sanders

Examples of subclan in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Deep divisions and distrust between officials in Mogadishu and regional leaders, as well as among clans and subclans, threaten to fragment the country. Sarah Harrison, Foreign Affairs, 28 Sep. 2023 From a subclan of the Mahariya Rizeigat tribe, nomadic people that herded camels in Darfur, Hemedti got his start as a commander of the Janjaweed. Eliza MacKintosh, CNN, 26 Apr. 2023

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'subclan.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use

1856, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of subclan was in 1856

Dictionary Entries Near subclan

Cite this Entry

“Subclan.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 18 May. 2024.

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