Meaning of hegemon in English:


Pronunciation /ˈhɛdʒɪmɒn/


  • A supreme leader.

    ‘The revolutionary and Napoleonic period would see three European hegemons dominate European international politics.’
    • ‘It seeks to prevent the emergence of a rival hegemon, and the doctrine of ‘preemptive strike’ is part of that.’
    • ‘France led the charge against the hegemon, and she wasn't alone.’
    • ‘Uzbekistan's ambitions to be the regional hegemon in Central Asia are well known.’
    • ‘The international environment is far more likely to enjoy peace under a single hegemon.’
    • ‘In international politics, benevolent hegemons are like unicorns - there are no such animals.’
    • ‘It would seem that global market forces have acknowledged the assumption by the United States of undisputed world leadership and accepted with enthusiasm the new hegemon.’
    • ‘These states are more comfortable with a distant hegemon with an honorable history of restraint than a local hegemon with a persistent history of expansionism.’
    • ‘Normally, as a hegemon the U.S. has the ability to replenish political capital almost at will.’
    • ‘Well, what is wrong is that other global hegemons that sought domination - Napoleonic France, Nazi Germany - always generated a hostile coalition of states that ganged up and challenged the big kid on the block.’
    • ‘That is, hegemons fall victim to what Yale historian Paul Kennedy famously called ‘imperial overstretch.’’
    • ‘They operated as unchallenged ideological and economic hegemons for a long time unscathed but were eventually felled by their own ‘foreign policies’.’
    • ‘Not all global hegemons are equally frightening.’
    • ‘Throughout history, hegemons have been challenged.’
    • ‘But it was always outclassed in terms of brute strength by the various would-be European hegemons.’
    • ‘On the face of it, this does seem like a mystery: global hegemons don't usually declare war on the status quo.’
    • ‘To be identified as the new hegemons was gratifying evidence that the opposition's nerve was cracking.’
    • ‘If hegemony permits this sort of behaviour, then we shouldn't have hegemons.’
    • ‘The sustainable way of being a global hegemon is to set up an international system that enshrines economic and political values which serves the interests of both the great powers and all potential rivals.’
    • ‘It's never easy to be the hegemon; intentions, no matter how benevolent, will always be seen by others, in faraway places, as malevolent.’


Early 19th century from Greek hēgemōn, from hēgeisthai ‘to lead’.