Definition of empire in US English:

empire

noun

Pronunciation /ˈɛmˌpaɪ(ə)r//ˈemˌpī(ə)r/
  • 1An extensive group of states or countries under a single supreme authority, formerly especially an emperor or empress.

    in names ‘the Roman Empire’
    • ‘The Romans established their empire at the height of Roman power.’
    • ‘The Ottoman empire was collapsing, and lands taken from them would be divided up among the victorious powers.’
    • ‘The engineers, inventors and seafarers who built the British empire are put centre stage in this confident history.’
    • ‘The European empires were dismembered by nationalist movements, with support from lawyers, journalists, unions, and the churches.’
    • ‘In China the Qing dynasty had built up the most extensive Chinese empire in history.’
    • ‘The Mughal empire had disintegrated and was being replaced by a variety of regional states.’
    • ‘But the Dutch and British colonial empires broke continuities, too.’
    • ‘The Inca empire extended into northwest Argentina, further south the indigenous people were nomadic hunters.’
    • ‘Various remnants of the once vast colonial empires are still controlled by European states.’
    • ‘As the Roman empire disintegrated, Gaul ceased to be a Roman province and was overrun by Germanic invaders.’
    • ‘When the Soviet empire collapsed, the factories kept right on humming.’
    • ‘The Greek empire stretched from Greece eastwards so it's part of that tradition.’
    • ‘Here colonists spilled their blood fighting side-by-side with the Redcoats to protect and expand the British empire.’
    • ‘Under Habsburg rule, it was the fourth largest city in the Austro-Hungarian empire.’
    • ‘The Inca empire which existed in 1532, before the Spanish conquest, was vast.’
    • ‘In 1900, with the Ottoman empire crumbling, the villagers added a four-storey bell tower.’
    • ‘The second Kingdom of Kush conquered most of Egypt, and eventually ruled an empire stretching from the borders of Palestine to the Blue and White Niles.’
    • ‘In part the old empires crumbled because of the changing balance of forces.’
    • ‘Consequently, Britain had secured for herself a vast colonial empire whereas Germany had very little.’
    • ‘The Ottoman empire lasted far longer than we have so far because it was based on power.’
    kingdom, realm, domain, territory, province
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1 Supreme political power over several countries when exercised by a single authority.
      ‘he encouraged the Greeks in their dream of empire in Asia Minor’
      • ‘In fact, there's a subset of neocons who believe that given our unparalleled power, empire is our destiny and we might as well embrace it.’
      • ‘The nation that came to an end under the power of foreign empire will know a new beginning and a new future.’
      • ‘Today, the prophets would once again see truth and justice shackled with chains, enslaved by selfishness and the lust for power and empire.’
      • ‘One area that does merit more attention than we can give it here is the role played by the legitimacy of empire as a political form.’
      • ‘Only a very strong, perhaps only a globally dominant, power can sustain informal empire in the long run.’
      • ‘Power and empire may not be quite the same thing but the distinction between them is less apparent than policymakers in Washington affect to believe.’
      • ‘We do not have the will or perseverance for empire.’
      • ‘For it is a mistake to suppose that institutions alone will save a republic from the abuses of power to which empire inevitably leads.’
      • ‘Nor will the emerging era likely prove a new age of empire.’
      • ‘Last year's Nobel Prize winner gives us the horror and the squalor, the dislocation and the dread that are the legacy of empire.’
      • ‘It is a history of dreams of empire, and of lessons unlearned.’
      • ‘Muthu is among the presenters; as are most of the other leading historians of political thought about empire and colonialism.’
      • ‘A public that disagrees with the very concept of empire.’
      • ‘It was all part of the myth of empire, that foreigners had to eat the unmentionable parts of fish, flesh and fowl because they couldn't get - or afford - the good stuff.’
      • ‘There is a narrative of Balkan history which sees the whole 20th century as a long struggle to create nation-states out of the ruins of empire.’
      • ‘The republic has been defined by its hypocrisy as much as by its virtue - just another great power justifying empire in the name of the greater improvement of all mankind.’
      • ‘While love might have something to do with his return to Pumpkin, pragmatism is clearly his motivation for giving up his dreams of empire.’
    2. 1.2archaic Absolute control over a person or group.
      • ‘With infinite complacency, men went to and fro about the globe, confident of our empire over this world.’
      • ‘Outside of God's prior work of justification, man is under the empire of sin.’
      • ‘Your death would be too dear a sacrifice: Virtue will resume her empire over your actions.’
      • ‘O powerful god, he cried, thou who holdest empire over the waves, deign to hearken to an unfortunate man!’
      • ‘Yet to accept its empire over every aspect of life, from art to sport in addition to all forms of business, cannot be the culminating achievement of human existence.’
  • 2A large commercial organization owned or controlled by one person or group.

    ‘her business empire grew’
    • ‘The son of an impoverished Jewish family in Central Europe, he ended up serving in the British army and as an MP before building one of the biggest business empires in the world.’
    • ‘I began building my vast media empire by starting a small regional newspaper in East Texas.’
    • ‘The disciplines he learnt then, he says, are the ones he now imposes on the business empires he takes over.’
    • ‘More impressive still, he has built his empire with a tiny organization and very little of his own capital.’
    • ‘His business empire stretches from aviation to pharmaceuticals and private security.’
    • ‘Finally, while his corporate empire is loaded with debt, the extent to which he himself has personal debts remains a closely guarded secret.’
    • ‘But before that he has to oversee his expanding retail empire.’
    • ‘How did he decide to start expanding his restaurant empire beyond Manhattan?’
    • ‘Normally business empires grow over four or five generations.’
    • ‘It was Arun who suggested that she launch her own clothing empire.’
    • ‘But political power will help him map out new administrative platforms to secure his business empire.’
    • ‘In the process, he established a varied business empire and married into the Kennedy family.’
    • ‘Her business empire suffered from employee dissatisfaction and manager buyouts, and indeed her entire business was almost totally lost to her on at least three occasions.’
    • ‘Johnson began to expand his publishing empire by launching a myriad of publications.’
    • ‘It can be used by Indians no less than Americans to leverage their talent to create global corporate empires.’
    • ‘He is one of the most powerful men on Earth, with a global information empire, News Corporation, that grabs the attention of two-thirds of the world's population.’
    • ‘There is no doubt, however, that his media empire reinforces his political power.’
    • ‘These new owners are turning to corporate managers to help transform the clubs into functioning parts of their business empires.’
    • ‘Through their control of vast energy empires, the oil monopolies are in a powerful position to control supplies and thereby jack up prices.’
    • ‘He is on a European tour and is looking to expand his business empire, perhaps to Ireland.’
    organization, corporation, multinational, conglomerate, consortium, company, business, firm, operation, institution, establishment, body
    View synonyms
    1. 2.1 An extensive operation or sphere of activity controlled by one person or group.
      ‘each ministry, each department had its own empire, its own agenda and worked to protect its turf’
      • ‘Of course, empire builders cannot tolerate competition, and he must be eliminated.’
      • ‘Luckily, part of his blogging empire includes a blog on the best ways to improve ones site in order to make a little scratch.’
      • ‘The Kingpin is beginning to lose control of his criminal empire.’
      • ‘The law school feels like an empire unto itself.’
      • ‘Local authorities have become vast empires of superfluous activity, overmanned at taxpayers' expense.’
      • ‘He seeks the best and wisest expert to repair them, dragging him away from the clutches of the evil rock and roll empire.’
  • 3A variety of apple.

adjective

Pronunciation /ˈɛmˌpaɪ(ə)r//ɑmˈpɪr//ämˈpir//ˈemˌpī(ə)r/
  • attributive Denoting a style of furniture, decoration, or dress fashionable during the First or (less commonly) the Second Empire in France. The decorative style was neoclassical but marked by an interest in Egyptian and other ancient motifs probably inspired by Napoleon's Egyptian campaigns.

    • ‘It glories in its Louis XIV and Empire style, all marble, gilt and elaborate stucco.’

Origin

Middle English: via Old French from Latin imperium, related to imperare ‘to command’ (see emperor).

Pronunciation

empire

Noun/ˈɛmˌpaɪ(ə)r/

empire

Adjective/ˈɛmˌpaɪ(ə)r//ɑmˈpɪr//ˈemˌpī(ə)r/