anarchy

[ an-er-kee ]
/ ˈæn ər ki /

noun

a state of society without government or law.
political and social disorder due to the absence of governmental control: The death of the king was followed by a year of anarchy.
lack of obedience to an authority; insubordination: the anarchy of his rebellious teenage years.
confusion and disorder: Intellectual and moral anarchy followed his loss of faith.It was impossible to find the book I was looking for in the anarchy of his bookshelves.

QUIZZES

BEAT THE DOLDRUMS WITH THIS WORD OF THE DAY QUIZ!

We know you’ll tackle this quiz totis viribus! See how many words from the week of Oct 12–18, 2020 you get right!
Question 1 of 7
What does “Indigenous” mean?

Origin of anarchy

First recorded in 1530–40; from Middle French anarchie or Medieval Latin anarchia or directly from Greek anarchía “lawlessness,” literally, “lack of a leader,” equivalent to ánarch(os) “leaderless” (an- “without, lacking” + arch(ós) “leader” + -os adjective suffix) + -ia noun suffix; see an-1, -y3

OTHER WORDS FROM anarchy

hy·per·an·ar·chy, nounpro·an·ar·chy, adjective

WORDS THAT MAY BE CONFUSED WITH anarchy

anarchism, anarchy
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2020

Example sentences from the Web for anarchy

British Dictionary definitions for anarchy

anarchy
/ (ˈænəkɪ) /

noun

general lawlessness and disorder, esp when thought to result from an absence or failure of government
the absence or lack of government
the absence of any guiding or uniting principle; disorder; chaos
the theory or practice of political anarchism

Derived forms of anarchy

anarchic (ænˈɑːkɪk) or anarchical, adjectiveanarchically, adverb

Word Origin for anarchy

C16: from Medieval Latin anarchia, from Greek anarkhia, from anarkhos without a ruler, from an- + arkh- leader, from arkhein to rule
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