[ dom-uh-nuhns ]
See synonyms for dominance on
  1. control; authority; rule; supreme influence.

  2. the condition of being dominant, or having the authority to influence or control.

  1. Psychology. the disposition of an individual to assert control in dealing with others.

  2. Animal Behavior. high status in a social group, usually acquired as the result of aggression, that involves the tendency to take priority in access to limited resources, as food, mates, or space.

  3. Neurology. the normal tendency for one side of the brain to be more important than the other in controlling certain functions, as speech and language.

Origin of dominance

First recorded in 1810–20; domin(ant) + -ance
  • Also dom·i·nan·cy .

Other words from dominance

  • non·dom·i·nance, noun
  • self-dom·i·nance, noun Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

How to use dominance in a sentence

  • True, the war was lost so far as any hope of winning European dominancy was concerned.

    G. H. Q. | Frank Fox
  • There could be no greater proof of the dominancy of Mr. Cowen's mind, than his establishment and devotion to the Chronicle.

  • The dominancy of heredity in these patterns is sometimes very striking.

    Science and the Criminal | C. Ainsworth Mitchell
  • The centers of exchange, distribution and commerce, located in great cities, will gradually lose their dominancy.

    Solaris Farm | Milan C. Edson
  • They believe that wealth is a power which can raise the wealthy few to the dominancy of a privileged class.

    Solaris Farm | Milan C. Edson

British Dictionary definitions for dominance


/ (ˈdɒmɪnəns) /

  1. control; ascendancy

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