Definition of dynasty in English:



  • 1A line of hereditary rulers of a country.

    ‘the Tang dynasty’
    • ‘As a young prince of the Renaissance, François became caught up in the struggle between the Habsburg and Valois dynasties of Europe.’
    • ‘Sharif Ali bin al-Hussein is reportedly the current heir to the Iraqi line of the Hashemite dynasty.’
    • ‘Two principal dynasties, the Umayyads and Abbasids, dominated the caliphate until 1258.’
    • ‘Actually, the village is a living museum of buildings of the Ming and Qing dynasties.’
    • ‘Many were built during the Yuan, Ming and Qing dynasties.’
    • ‘The massive monumental structures were intricately carved and decorated with scenes showing how the hereditary dynasties of the kings united with the gods.’
    • ‘The Italian branches of the Habsburg and Bourbon dynasties were severed from their parent houses.’
    • ‘Founder of the Merovingian dynasty was Merovaeus, said to be descended from the union of a sea creature and a French queen.’
    • ‘The Emperor Yao is considered by some Confucians to be the model ruler and the ancestor of the Han dynasty.’
    • ‘In each, there were normally at any one time many rulers and many dynasties contending for power, and within the typical dynasty often more than one claimant to the position of ruler.’
    • ‘In 1740 war came again as the result of another succession crisis when the male line of the Habsburg dynasty came to an end.’
    • ‘The Habsburg and Hohenzollern dynasties abdicated, following the Romanovs.’
    • ‘In content, Soucek concentrates on the political narrative of conquests, rulers, and dynasties, along with brief profiles of a few literary and religious figures.’
    • ‘How many rulers in the Herod dynasty are identified in Bible History?’
    • ‘Prior to the modern period, states were justified by reference to their rulers, their dynasties, and their religion.’
    • ‘This month my two-part series on the Dukes of York concludes with the dukes from the Stuart, Hanoverian, and Windsor dynasties.’
    • ‘He assisted in compiling the official histories of the Jin and Sui dynasties.’
    • ‘The survivors of the English royal dynasty, led by Edgar the Atheling, fled to Malcolm's court in 1068.’
    • ‘When the Hohenstaufen dynasty fell in 1254, the capital of Italian poetry moved north.’
    • ‘The relationship between Taiwan and China goes back more than 400 years, through the PRC, the Republic of China, and the Qing and Ming dynasties.’
    bloodline, line, ancestral line, lineage, house, family, ancestry, descent, extraction, succession, genealogy, family tree
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1 A succession of people from the same family who play a prominent role in business, politics, or another field.
      ‘the Ford dynasty’
      • ‘Bootlegging helped enrich a fellow named Joseph Kennedy, creating one of America's great political dynasties.’
      • ‘At the same time, the Bush women are a critical factor in the rise and success of the dynasty.’
      • ‘As the third in line in the McCain dynasty, he is the man as far as the US Navy is concerned.’
      • ‘The former vice president is the son of a US Senator and scion of a prominent political dynasty.’
      • ‘The era of the privately-run family dynasties in Australian media is over, and the era of benign governance of the ABC is over.’
      • ‘The Bird dynasty, which has controlled the politics since independence, was voted out two months ago.’
      • ‘There are famous acting dynasties and producer dynasties.’
      • ‘Looking outside politics, we see similar dynasties in business, for example the Rockefellers, Mellons and du Ponts.’
      • ‘Indonesia's election campaign is in many ways a battle between two dynasties which have dominated politics since the country's birth almost 60 years ago.’
      • ‘For the Post, the International Herald Tribune partnership was as much a personal bond between the two newspapers and the two family dynasties as it was a business deal.’
      • ‘Is it finally high noon for one of Turkey's most powerful business dynasties?’
      • ‘Mark Stafford, a fourth-generation scion of one of Leinster's most prominent business dynasties, has decided to end his family's informal media omerta.’
      • ‘The man who helped to create a president and a political dynasty died in April last year after a lifetime of achievement.’
      • ‘Part of the club for 35 years, Garry Hughes and the Hughes family are a dynasty in rugby league circles.’
      • ‘But the kinship between these two pedigreed sons of American political dynasties is sincere.’
      • ‘If the scions of the political dynasties have to reinvent themselves as stars in order to capture the imagination, what hope is there for ordinary but hard-working candidates?’
      • ‘Doreen has been Haworth's lollipop lady for 11 years and she is steadily building up a family dynasty in the job.’
      • ‘Of course none of these great families runs its operations quite like the industrial dynasties of the 19th century.’
      • ‘Newcomers trying to break into politics in Kerry must be having second thoughts, given the way the old political dynasties continue to dominate.’
      • ‘They established dynasties and played an important role in political life.’
      bloodline, line, ancestral line, lineage, house, family, ancestry, descent, extraction, succession, genealogy, family tree
      View synonyms


Late Middle English: from French dynastie, or via late Latin from Greek dunasteia ‘lordship, power’, from dunastēs (see dynast).