Alternative formsEdit


From Middle English conqueren, from Old French conquerre, from Late Latin conquaerere (to knock, strike; to search for, procure), from Latin con- + quaerere (to seek, acquire). Displaced native Old English oferwinnan.



conquer (third-person singular simple present conquers, present participle conquering, simple past and past participle conquered)

  1. To defeat in combat; to subjugate.
  2. To acquire by force of arms, win in war; to become ruler of; to subjugate.
    In 1453, the Ottoman Empire conquered Constantinople.
    • 1593, [William Shakespeare], Venus and Adonis, London: [] Richard Field, [], OCLC 837166078, [verse 17]; 2nd edition, London: [] Richard Field, [], 1594, OCLC 701755207, lines [97–100]:
      I haue beene wooed, as I intreat thee now, / Euen by the ſterne, and direfull God of warre, / VVhoſe ſinowie necke in battel nere did bow, / VVho conquers where he comes in euery iarre; []
    • 1714, Alexander Pope, Imitation of Horace, Book II. Sat. 6
      We conquer'd France, but felt our captive's charms.
    • 1912, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, The Lost World[1]:
      "Look at Clive - just a clerk, and he conquered India!"
    • 1992, Nixon, Richard, “The Pacific Triangle”, in Seize the Moment[2], Simon & Schuster, →ISBN, LCCN 91-37743, OCLC 440652941, page 170:
      Taiwan's interests and Hong Kong's political and economic future are best served by close ties between their friends in the West and Beijing. For example, the fact that the PRC must choose between using force to conquer Taiwan and forfeiting its relationship with the United States is the best guarantee of Taipei's security.
  3. To overcome an abstract obstacle.
    Today I conquered my fear of flying by finally boarding a plane.
    to conquer difficulties or temptations
  4. (dated) To gain, win, or obtain by effort.
    to conquer freedom;   to conquer a peace

Derived termsEdit