Definition of commodore in US English:



  • 1A naval officer of high rank, in particular an officer in the US Navy or Coast Guard ranking above captain and below rear admiral.

    • ‘I think we also have some commodores in the navy who have never been to sea!’
    • ‘Among those attending were several former commodores and captains of the ship.’
    • ‘Before he knew it, the pirate found himself facing another commodore.’
    • ‘In May 1787 he left England as commodore of the First Fleet.’
    • ‘The instructor passes a question about Maydays onto the commodore, as she has more experience of them than him.’
    • ‘The three commodores all begin giving reasons why their fleets need the reserve the most.’
    • ‘Behind him stood the many admirals and commodores under his command, all of them dedicated to the task at hand.’
    • ‘If, as is generally accepted, a commodore is needed to head the group, questions arise over his or her jurisdiction over the air group.’
    • ‘The commodore pressed the young pirate, taking the aggressive stance Duff was used to taking, and forcing him to block more than he was used to.’
    • ‘‘Could be better,’ the commodore commanding the 1st Task Force admitted.’
    • ‘The highest-ranking female officer in the Royal Navy is a commodore.’
    • ‘The two commodores exchanged gifts - one of the books given to him was Jackspeak, a dictionary of Navy slang, to help remind him of his time with the Senior Service.’
    • ‘In her time she was under the command of nine admirals and finally one commodore, and during royal tours was manned by 220 Yachtsmen, 21 officers, three season officers and a Royal Marines Band of 26.’
    • ‘On promotion to commodore in December 1993 he became Director General, Naval Policy and Warfare, with responsibilities for development and co-ordination of strategic policy.’
    • ‘The commodore was most interested in disarming him, obviously thinking that if he took the captain alive, he'd have an easier time taking the crew.’
    • ‘From 1779 to 1782 he served as commodore in operations of the French fleet off North America, supporting the American Revolution.’
    • ‘Promotions and postings followed, until she was made air commodore.’
    1. 1.1 The president of a yacht club.
      • ‘‘The intent of the club was to promote boating and safety on the water,’ said Larry, one of the club's former commodores.’
      • ‘Bob was a good cook, sang bass in the local choir, and was commodore of the Avon Sailing Club.’
      • ‘When the day arrived after weeks of publicity and hype, sailors gathered at the Royal Varuna Yacht Club to register for their former commodore's yacht race.’
      • ‘I recently became commodore of a large boat club.’
      • ‘Vic is the commodore and an original member of the yacht club.’
      • ‘Born and raised on a farm in Minnesota, she became an avid sailor on the state's many lakes, racing sailboats and eventually winding up as the first female commodore of her yacht club.’
      • ‘Stella Murdock, club commodore, said it had all gone very well - despite heavy rain.’
      • ‘The commodore said races will be held each Saturday within the harbour.’
      • ‘An early tradition established was that the incumbent president of the regatta organizing committee was the then commodore of the Royal Varuna Yacht Club, which holds the proprietary rights to the event.’
      • ‘Westray's new marina was officially opened on Tuesday afternoon by former Westray yachting club commodore Norman Cooper.’
      • ‘He was also the first commodore of the Broome yacht club, and has been part of many community organisations over the years.’
      • ‘He was the commodore of the yacht club - everyone called him The Commodore - but all the kids were scared to sail with him.’
      • ‘Tom, vice commodore of the sailing club, said he was most concerned about the children who regularly swam in the river, from the bank opposite the club.’
      • ‘When they see that our commodore has a more impressive uniform than their commodore, they will roll out the red carpet for me all the way from the dock to the bar.’
      • ‘However, I believe that people should understand that it is inappropriate to approach the commodore of their club with complaints when the commodore is sitting on his/her boat with family and guests.’
      • ‘‘I know sailors all over the country and I believe they can be mobilized as a constituency for change in ocean policy,’ says Rockefeller, himself a former yacht club commodore.’
      • ‘Mr Harris was commodore at the Maldon Little Ship Club from April 2001 to March 2003, carrying out charity work on the club's behalf.’
    2. 1.2 The senior captain of a shipping line.
      • ‘At Tilbury she picked up 53 first-class passengers before Captain Richard Griffith, a 46-year-old commodore of the Atlantic Line, headed her down the Channel at a steady 13 knots.’
      • ‘I am honoured by this appointment to Commodore of the fleet of the most famous shipping company in the world.’
      • ‘With the full consent of the Board he continued to sail as Commodore until the end of the summer season of 1900.’


Late 17th century: probably from Dutch komandeur, from French commandeur ‘commander’.