A dynasty is a series of leaders in the same family, like the British Royal Family, or a local business dynasty, in which four generations have made their fortune at the family store.

The word dynasty, pronounced “DIE-nas-tee,” comes from the Greek word dynasteia, meaning “power, lordship, sovereignty.” If you are part of a dynasty, you probably do have power — and also wealth, privilege. But there is also pressure to achieve as much as your parents, grandparents, and other relatives. Another kind of dynasty is found in sports — a team that wins many championships is a dynasty.

Definitions of dynasty
  1. noun

    a sequence of powerful leaders in the same family

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    Bourbon, Bourbon dynasty

    a European royal line that ruled in France (from 1589-1793) and Spain and Naples and Sicily
    Capetian dynasty

    a Frankish dynasty founded by Hugh Capet that ruled from 987 to 1328
    Carlovingian dynasty, Carolingian dynasty

    a Frankish dynasty founded by Charlemagne’s father that ruled from 751 to 987
    Flavian dynasty

    a dynasty of Roman Emperors from 69 to 96 including Vespasian and his sons Titus and Domitian
    Han, Han dynasty

    imperial dynasty that ruled China (most of the time from 206 BC to AD 220) and expanded its boundaries and developed its bureaucracy; remembered as one of the great eras of Chinese civilization
    Hanover, Hanoverian line, House of Hanover

    the English royal house that reigned from 1714 to 1901 (from George I to Victoria)
    Habsburg, Hapsburg

    a royal German family that provided rulers for several European states and wore the crown of the Holy Roman Empire from 1440 to 1806

    a German noble family that ruled Brandenburg and Prussia
    House of Lancaster, Lancaster, Lancastrian line

    the English royal house that reigned from 1399 to 1461; its emblem was a red rose
    Liao, Liao dynasty

    the dynasty that ruled much of Manchuria and northeastern China from 947 to 1125
    Merovingian, Merovingian dynasty

    a Frankish dynasty founded by Clovis I that reigned in Gaul and Germany from about 500 to 750
    Ming, Ming dynasty

    the imperial dynasty of China from 1368 to 1644
    Ottoman, Ottoman dynasty

    the Turkish dynasty that ruled the Ottoman Empire from the 13th century to its dissolution after World War I
    Plantagenet, Plantagenet line

    the family name of a line of English kings that reigned from 1154 to 1485
    Ptolemaic dynasty, Ptolemy

    an ancient dynasty of Macedonian kings who ruled Egypt from 323 BC to 30 BC; founded by Ptolemy I and ended with Cleopatra
    Ch’in, Ch’in dynasty, Qin, Qin dynasty

    the Chinese dynasty (from 246 BC to 206 BC) that established the first centralized imperial government and built much of the Great Wall
    Ch’ing, Ch’ing dynasty, Manchu, Manchu dynasty, Qing, Qing dynasty

    the last imperial dynasty of China (from 1644 to 1912) which was overthrown by revolutionaries; during the Qing dynasty China was ruled by the Manchu
    Romanoff, Romanov

    the Russian imperial line that ruled from 1613 to 1917

    the name of the royal family that ruled Great Britain from 1901-1917; the name was changed to Windsor in 1917 in response to anti-German feelings in World War I

    any one of the Turkish dynasties that ruled Asia Minor from the 11th to the 13th centuries; they successfully invaded Byzantium and defended the Holy Land against Crusaders
    Shang, Shang dynasty

    the imperial dynasty ruling China from about the 18th to the 12th centuries BC

    the royal family that ruled Scotland from 1371-1714 and ruled England from 1603 to 1649 and again from 1660 to 1714
    Song, Song dynasty, Sung, Sung dynasty

    the imperial dynasty of China from 960 to 1279; noted for art and literature and philosophy
    Tang, Tang dynasty

    the imperial dynasty of China from 618 to 907
    House of Tudor, Tudor

    an English dynasty descended from Henry Tudor; Tudor monarchs ruled from Henry VII to Elizabeth I (from 1485 to 1603)
    Omayyad, Ommiad, Umayyad

    the first dynasty of Arab caliphs whose capital was Damascus

    French royal house from 1328 to 1589
    Wei, Wei dynasty

    any of several imperial dynasties of China ruling from 220 to 265 and from 386 to 556
    House of Windsor, Windsor

    the British royal family since 1917
    House of York, York

    the English royal house (a branch of the Plantagenet line) that reigned from 1461 to 1485; its emblem was a white rose
    Mongol dynasty, Yuan, Yuan dynasty

    the imperial dynasty of China from 1279 to 1368
    Chou, Chou dynasty, Chow, Chow dynasty, Zhou, Zhou dynasty

    the imperial dynasty of China from 1122 to 221 BC; notable for the rise of Confucianism and Taoism
    type of:

    family, family line, folk, kinfolk, kinsfolk, phratry, sept

    people descended from a common ancestor

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