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Douglas Harper's Etymology Dictionary

czar

1550s, from Russian tsar, from Old Slavic tsesari, from Gothic kaisar, from Greek kaisar, from Latin Caesar. First adopted by Russian emperor Ivan IV, 1547.\n\nThe spelling with cz- is against the usage of all Slavonic languages; the word was so spelt by Herberstein, Rerum Moscovit. Commentarii, 1549, the chief early source of knowledge as to Russia in Western Europe, whence it passed into the Western Languages generally; in some of these it is now old-fashioned; the usual Ger. form is now zar; French adopted tsar during the 19th c. This also became frequent in English towards the end of that century, having been adopted by the Times newspaper as the most suitable English spelling.

[OED]

\nThe Germanic form of the word also is the source of Finnish keisari, Estonian keisar. The transferred sense of "person with dictatorial powers" is first recorded 1866, American English, initially in reference to President Andrew Johnson. The fem. czarina is 1717, from Italian czarina, from Ger. Zarin, fem. of Zar "czar." The Russian fem. form is tsaritsa. His son is tsarevitch, his daughter is tsarevna.
Wikipedia

Czar (disambiguation)

Czar (political term)

Czar is an informal title for certain high-level officials in the United States and the United Kingdom. Political czars can run or organize governmental departments, and may devote their expertise to a single area of work. The "czars" have various official titles which may include the terms adviser, director, administrator, or diplomatic envoy, but such titles are often quite long or awkward sounding.

In the United States, czars are generally executive branch officials appointed by the President either with Senate approval or without it. Some appointees outside the executive branch are called czars as well. Specific instances of the term are often a media creation.

In the United Kingdom, the term tsar is more loosely used to refer to high-profile appointments who devote their skills to one particular area.

Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English

czar

noun
COLLOCATIONS FROM OTHER ENTRIES
drug czar
COLLOCATIONS FROM CORPUS
■ NOUN
drug
▪ Standouts include Douglas's anti-#drugs czar whose daughter is a crackhead.
▪ Barry R.. McCaffrey, White House drug czar.
▪ When drug traffic escalates, they appoint a national drug czar.
▪ Our drug czar watches in impotence as shooting wars between drug gangs erupt in city after city.
▪ Similarly, when Dole asserts that Clinton reduced the office of drug czar by 83 percent, he is on solid ground.
EXAMPLES FROM CORPUS
▪ People were arrested and deported to Siberia on the slightest suspicion of disloyalty to the czar.
▪ The czars introduced constitutional guarantees, only to ignore them whenever it suited their purpose.
▪ When drug traffic escalates, they appoint a national drug czar.
The Collaborative International Dictionary

czar

czar \czar\ (z["a]r), n. [Russ. tsare, fr. L. Caesar C[ae]sar; cf. OPol. czar, Pol. car. ] A king; a chief; the title of the emperor of Russia. [Written also tsar and tzar.]

Wiktionary

czar

n. 1 (alternative spelling of tsar English) 2 A person assigned to a task-related government oversight office, e.g. "drug czar".

WordNet

czar

  1. n. a male monarch or emperor (especially of Russia prior to 1917) [syn: tsar, tzar]

  2. a person having great power

Usage examples of "czar".

The Earl of Aberdeen and the whole Peelite section of the cabinet were believed to be too friendly to the czar, and adopting a policy unworthy of English greatness and of English honour.

Now Carmen Lunetta, czar of the Port of Miami, wants to expand Bicentennial and adjacent property into a fancy harborage for cruise liners.

I told him that I should take my chance with the Czar Peter, and see if his Czarship thought the same esteem was due to the disgraced courtier as to the favoured diplomatist.

The czar quitted his army with some precipitation, as if he had been afraid of hazarding his person, while Charles advanced through ways that were thought impracticable, and surprised the enemy.

He wore his brown, carefully ironed uniform with its chestful of medals and ribbons, and on his head was his black-visored cap, still bearing the seal of Czar Nicholas II.

You are a child of a nation that has bowed beneath the indistinguishable tyrannies of czars, of Party apparatchiks, of elected kleptocrats and their Mafya henchmen.

The Serbian Czar and the elite of his nobles were killed and his son forced to accept vassalship to the Sultan.

It is as if some great magnifico male, some inordinate czar or kaiser, should step down from the throne to play dominoes with him behind the door.

The establishment of Augustus on the throne of Poland was in some measure owing to the conduct of Peter the czar of Muscovy, who having formed great designs against the Ottoman Porte, was very unwilling to see the crown of Poland possessed by a partizan of France, which was in alliance with the grand seignor.

The grave conversations with Bolingbroke and Richard Cromwell, the light scenes in London and at Paris, the favour obtained with the Czar of Russia, are all essential to the creation of that mixture of wearied satiety and mournful thought which conducts the Probationer to the lonely spot in which he is destined to learn at once the mystery of his past life and to clear his reason from the doubts that had obscured the future world.

Russian statehood for the second time ran across the Jewish problem when Smolensk was taken by Czar Alexyey Mikhaylovich the Debonnaire, also an old Russian nationalist who was not conscious of his nationalism.

The Czar Peter, in the full possession of despotic power, submitted to the judgment of Russia, of Europe, and of posterity, the reasons which had compelled him to subscribe the condemnation of a criminal, or at least of a degenerate son.

This tableware had been carried from the Winter Palace of the Russian Czar, saved by trusted servants.

Count Helmuth James von Moltke, a great-great-nephew of the Field Marshal who had led the Prussian Army to victory over France in 1870, and Count Peter Yorck von Wartenburg, a direct descendant of the famous General of the Napoleonic era who, with Clausewitz, had signed the Convention of Tauroggen with Czar Alexander I by which the Prussian Army changed sides and helped bring the downfall of Bonaparte.

Tharik males were crazy, for Igor had been a good Czar until the death of Melania, his first Czarina.