mas·​tery ˈma-st(ə-)rē How to pronounce mastery (audio)
: the authority of a master : dominion
: the upper hand in a contest or competition : superiority, ascendancy
: possession or display of great skill or technique
: skill or knowledge that makes one master of a subject : command

Example Sentences

We were impressed by her mastery of the subject. She achieved a complete mastery of French. He struggled to gain mastery of his fears.
Recent Examples on the Web DeSantis’s commitment to the raging style of Trumpist politics—his mastery of the first wheel—hardly needs comment at this point. Katherine Stewart, The New Republic, 14 Feb. 2023 Reid has praised the growth of the quarterback in his sixth year, complimenting his mastery of man, zone, shell, single safety and quarters coverages. Jeff Fedotin, Forbes, 9 Feb. 2023 Pelé’s impressive athleticism and unrivaled creativity on the field have become the stuff of legend, leaving a lasting mark even on those who never witnessed his mastery of the sport. Ana Ionova, New York Times, 30 Dec. 2022 The genius of Pelé’s play prompted a 48-hour cease-fire in at least one civil war as Nigerians put their arms down to behold his mastery during a 1969 exhibition in Lagos. Liz Clarke, Washington Post, 29 Dec. 2022 Winner of the 2021 National League Cy Young thanks to his mastery of the cut fastball and eye-popping strikeout totals. Jr Radcliffe, Journal Sentinel, 18 Nov. 2022 Belichick appears to be losing his grip on his mastery of the game. Gary Washburn,, 14 Sep. 2022 Jackson, playing in his first game since mid-December, continued his Week 1 mastery. Jonas Shaffer, Baltimore Sun, 11 Sep. 2022 Entrepreneurs with a growth mindset emphasize learning, progress and mastery along with business outcomes. Expert Panel®, Forbes, 21 Feb. 2023 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'mastery.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

Word History


Middle English maistrie, from Anglo-French mestrie, maistrie, from meistre master

First Known Use

13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Time Traveler
The first known use of mastery was in the 13th century

Dictionary Entries Near mastery

Cite this Entry

“Mastery.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 24 Mar. 2023.

Kids Definition


mas·​tery ˈmas-t(ə-)rē How to pronounce mastery (audio)
plural masteries
: the position or authority of a master
: skill or knowledge that makes one master of something : command
a mastery of French

More from Merriam-Webster on mastery

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