com·​mand·​er | \ kə-ˈman-dər How to pronounce commander (audio) \

Definition of commander

1 : one in an official position of command or control: such as
b : the presiding officer of a society or organization
2 : a commissioned officer in the navy or coast guard ranking above a lieutenant commander and below a captain

Other Words from commander

commandership \ kə-​ˈman-​dər-​ˌship How to pronounce commander (audio) \ noun

Examples of commander in a Sentence

a surrender of the fort by the commander without a single shot having been fired the intrepid commander of the HMS Surprise
Recent Examples on the Web The face of a commander from the southern city of Kandahar was so badly burned that his nose was a smooth, flat scar in the center of his face; a black and reddish hue covered his cheeks. Jane Ferguson, The New Yorker, 5 Jan. 2022 No further details have been released, but a commander with the department’s homicide unit will provide an update from the scene, Chester said. Henri Hollis, ajc, 4 Jan. 2022 Sitting in a Ford Ranger inscribed with the insignia of the former U.S.-funded national police, Taliban commander Hemmat Agha stared across the Kamal Khan Dam’s electric blue water into the desert where Afghanistan meets Iran. WSJ, 30 Dec. 2021 With the insurgents’ victory in that 20-year war secured this summer, Mr. Gulab, now a high-level commander, was sitting with me in Marja’s government headquarters, a mess of a building the Americans had refurbished years ago. New York Times, 29 Dec. 2021 Marcinko enlisted in the Navy in 1958 and eventually worked his way up to the rank of commander. Marlene Lenthang, NBC News, 27 Dec. 2021 Tony Eshoo, a company commander who supervised the homebound soldiers on Saturday. Sig Christenson And Sam Owens, San Antonio Express-News, 18 Dec. 2021 On Tuesday, jurors heard from a suburban Minneapolis police commander that Potter was fully trained in her department's Taser and use of force policies. Ray Sanchez, CNN, 16 Dec. 2021 He’d been relentlessly bullied and hazed by a commander known for his cruelty. Washington Post, 16 Dec. 2021

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

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Time Traveler for commander

Time Traveler

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

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Dictionary Entries Near commander



commander in chief

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Statistics for commander

Last Updated

15 Jan 2022

Cite this Entry

“Commander.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 18 Jan. 2022.

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More Definitions for commander



English Language Learners Definition of commander

: a person who is in charge of a group of people
: an officer of high rank in the U.S. Navy, the U.S. Coast Guard, or the British Royal Navy


com·​mand·​er | \ kə-ˈman-dər How to pronounce commander (audio) \

Kids Definition of commander

: a commissioned officer in the navy or coast guard ranking above a lieutenant and below a captain

More from Merriam-Webster on commander

Nglish: Translation of commander for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of commander for Arabic Speakers


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