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top dog

noun
1.
a person, group, or nation that has acquired a position of highest authority.
2.
the winner of a competition or rivalry; champion:
He was determined to be top dog at the swimming meet.
3.
Animal Behavior. the alpha male or alpha female in a dominance hierarchy.
Origin
1885-1900
1885-1900
Related forms
top-dog, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Examples from the web for top dog
  • Coyotes became top dog, filling the wolf's ecological niche.
  • Though this species is formidable it's not the top dog in the neighborhood.
  • She went from being top dog to pretty low on the totem pole.
  • Pinning the dog to the ground and growling at him so that you can show your top dog.
  • The new top dog, our early party guest, had emerged from nowhere.
  • If you're not top dog you have to keep an eye out for him.
  • No question about it, though: the sneaker is top dog this summer.
British Dictionary definitions for top dog

top dog

noun
1.
(informal) the leader or chief of a group
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Slang definitions & phrases for top dog

top banana

noun phrase
  1. The leading or featured comedian in a burlesque show; the chief comic (1950s+ Show business)
  2. The leader, president, manager, etc; boss, big enchilada: refuses its members opportunity to become top banana (1970s+)

[said to have originated fr a burlesque routine having to do with a bunch of bananas]


The Dictionary of American Slang, Fourth Edition by Barbara Ann Kipfer, PhD. and Robert L. Chapman, Ph.D.
Copyright (C) 2007 by HarperCollins Publishers.
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Idioms and Phrases with top dog

top dog

see: top banana
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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Difficulty index for top dog

Few English speakers likely know this word

Word Value for top

5
6
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