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[duh-min-yuh n] /dəˈmɪn yən/
the power or right of governing and controlling; sovereign authority.
rule; control; domination.
a territory, usually of considerable size, in which a single rulership holds sway.
lands or domains subject to sovereignty or control.
Government. a territory constituting a self-governing commonwealth and being one of a number of such territories united in a community of nations, or empire: formerly applied to self-governing divisions of the British Empire, as Canada and New Zealand.
dominions, Theology, domination (def 3).
late Middle English
1400-50; late Middle English < Middle French < Medieval Latin *dominiōn- (stem of *dominiō) lordship, equivalent to Latin domin(ium) dominium + -iōn- -ion
Related forms
interdominion, adjective
self-dominion, noun Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for dominion
  • There is only one state that has sovereignty and dominion over their lives.
  • State enjoyed the same dominion status as Canada, which was also an independent nation.
  • In the Everglades, man would learn the limits of that dominion.
  • Tired of his dark dominion swung the fiend.
  • Interpretation has established its dominion over American literary scholarship.
  • He was not impressed by his new dominion.
  • We desire no conquest, no dominion.
  • Seems like it reduces to belief systems -- whether one accepts that humans have dominion over the earth or not.
  • Only military dominion keeps such activity at bay.
  • To do so confers acceptance of their majestic dominion over their subjects.
British Dictionary definitions for dominion


rule; authority
the land governed by one ruler or government
sphere of influence; area of control
a name formerly applied to self-governing divisions of the British Empire
theDominion, New Zealand
(law) a less common word for dominium
Word Origin
C15: from Old French, from Latin dominium ownership, from dominus master


(property law) the ownership or right to possession of property, esp realty
Word Origin
C19: from Latin: property, ownership; see dominion
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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Word Origin and History for dominion

early 15c., from Old French dominion "dominion, rule, power," from Medieval Latin dominionem (nominative dominio), corresponding to Latin dominium "property, ownership," from dominus (see domination).

British sovereign colonies often were called dominions, hence the Dominion of Canada, the formal title after the 1867 union, and Old Dominion, the popular name for the U.S. state of Virginia, first recorded 1778.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Encyclopedia Article for dominion

the status, prior to 1939, of each of the British Commonwealth countries of Canada, Australia, New Zealand, the Union of South Africa, Eire, and Newfoundland. Although there was no formal definition of dominion status, a pronouncement by the Imperial Conference of 1926 described Great Britain and the dominions as "autonomous communities within the British Empire, equal in status, in no way subordinate one to another in any aspect of their domestic or external affairs, though united by a common allegiance to the Crown and freely associated as members of the British Commonwealth of Nations."

Learn more about dominion with a free trial on
Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
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