Definition of shogun in US English:



  • A hereditary commander in chief in feudal Japan. Because of the military power concentrated in his hands and the consequent weakness of the nominal head of state (the mikado or emperor), the shogun was generally the real ruler of the country until feudalism was abolished in 1867.

    • ‘They always had duel leadership the emperor as a figurehead, and shogun as a real leader.’
    • ‘Before, Great-Grandfather was only a low-ranking samurai, but after he saved the shogun, he bestowed upon him his name, and that is how we are today.’
    • ‘They span from the days of the samurai and shogun, to 1945 when the atomic bomb was dropped on Hiroshima.’
    • ‘In 1592 and 1597 the Japanese shogun Toyotomi Hideyoshi embarked on disastrous invasions of Korea.’
    • ‘The Kamakura shogunate represented the real power in the country until the resignation of the last shogun in 1867.’
    • ‘The Tokugawa shoguns instituted, in effect, wood rationing: building houses of lighter construction, and replacing wood as a fuel with coal and devising more efficient stoves and ovens.’
    • ‘Keichu Tokugawa, son of a former shogun, was treated no differently in Judo training than any of Kano's other students.’
    • ‘From then effective power lay with the shogun rather than the emperor.’
    • ‘Lord Ieyasu received the title of shogun from the emperor in 1603, and opened his shogunate in Edo (current Tokyo).’
    • ‘He flourished in the early times of the Tokugawa shoguns.’
    • ‘Nevertheless, the shogun as the actual rulers, wanted to avoid any obvious offenses of the emperor and followed a system of formal ceremonies and regular visits and gifts to the emperor.’
    • ‘The Kyoto Imperial Palace and the Nijo Castle, former home of the shoguns, are situated right in the heart of the city.’
    • ‘Its net worth was over a million dollars in the United States because it was an actual katana used by a shogun in ancient Japan.’
    • ‘Hiroshige, who was born Ando Tokutaro, was a member of the samurai class, and, following in his father's professional footsteps, he was a part of the shogun's firefighting organization.’
    • ‘Over time, these powerful families were, in turn, replaced as the real - but unofficial - locus of power by various shoguns.’
    • ‘When in the following October the nobody met Katsu Kaishu, the enlightened commissioners of the shogun's navy, it might have been with intent to assassinate him.’
    • ‘I am instructed to deliver it to the shogun as soon as possible.’
    • ‘The Tokugawa shoguns forbade the building of any ships large enough to sail the open ocean, and no one was allowed to leave the country.’
    • ‘The imperial court was a secluded world of its own, politically powerless, but well equipped with funds by the governing shoguns to dedicate themselves to fine arts.’
    • ‘During the next two centuries, under the leadership of successive shoguns, Japan gradually achieved a stable population and more sustainable rates of resource consumption.’


Japanese, from Chinese jiāng jūn ‘general’.