Definition of sovereignty noun from the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary



    BrE BrE//ˈsɒvrənti//
    ; NAmE NAmE//ˈsɑːvrənti//
    [uncountable] (formal)
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  1. 1sovereignty (over something) complete power to govern a country The country claimed sovereignty over the island. the sovereignty of Parliament (figurative) the idea of consumer sovereignty
  2. 2the state of being a country with freedom to govern itself The declaration proclaimed the full sovereignty of the republic. CollocationsInternational relationsTrade facilitate/​regulate trade (with other countries) form/​join a trading bloc live in/​compete in a global/​the world economy support/​promote free trade adopt/​call for/​oppose protectionist measures erect/​impose/​reduce/​remove trade barriers impose/​lift/​raise/​eliminate import tariffs (on something) have/​run a huge/​large/​growing trade surplus/​deficit embrace/​resist/​drive globalizationPolitics and law conduct/​handle/​talk about/​discuss foreign policy pursue an aggressive/​a hawkish foreign policy require/​use/​conduct diplomacy establish/​break off/​sever/​restore diplomatic relations foster/​promote/​strengthen regional cooperation facilitate/​achieve economic/​political integration exercise/​defend/​protect/​transfer/​restore/​regain national/​state/​full/​limited sovereignty consolidate/​extend/​lose/​retain your power (in the region) hold/​maintain/​change/​alter/​shift/​be a shift in the balance of power (in the region) cause/​create/​open/​expose/​heal/​repair a deep/​growing/​major/​serious rift between X and YMeetings and agreements have/​hold/​host/​attend an international conference/​an economic forum/​a G20 summit launch a new round of global/​multilateral/​world trade negotiations send/​head/​lead/​meet a high-level/​an official/​a trade delegation begin/​start/​continue/​resume peace talks be committed to/​be opposed to/​disrupt/​undermine/​derail/​sabotage the peace process negotiate/​achieve a lasting political settlement broker/​sign a peace deal/​agreement/​treatyConflict be/​constitute/​pose a threat to global security compromise/​endanger/​protect national security justify/​be in favour of/ (especially US English) be in favor of/​be against military intervention threaten/​authorize/​launch/​take/​support/​oppose unilateral/​pre-emptive military action impose/​enforce/​lift/​end economic sanctions/​an arms embargo/​a naval blockade close/​protect/​secure/​patrol the border lead/​be involved in a peacekeeping operationAid negotiate/​announce a $15 billion aid package/​an economic stimulus package send/​provide/​request/​cut off military aid bring/​provide emergency/​humanitarian relief deliver/​distribute medical supplies/(British English) food parcels fund/​run a foreign/​a local/​an international NGO reduce/​eradicate child/​global/​world poverty
  3. Word Originlate Middle English: from Old French sovereinete, from soverain, based on Latin super ‘above’. Culture The British government has always had the authority to make and change laws, but as a member of the European Union, Britain now has to respect some European laws that cannot be changed by the government. In the 1980s and 1990s some British people thought that this was a serious loss of sovereignty. Eurosceptics said that there would be more losses of sovereignty, and that Britain should leave the EU, but most people agreed with the idea of'subsidiarity', i.e. that most local decisions should be made by individual countries or regions, unless there is an important reason for deciding something at a European court.Extra examples Demonstrators demanded full sovereignty for the self-proclaimed republic. In 1949 the Dutch ceded sovereignty of the Dutch East Indies to the Indonesian Republic. Politicians were alarmed over the potential loss of national sovereignty. Protesters called on the government to adopt a declaration of sovereignty. Sovereignty resides with the people. The treaty gave Edward III sovereignty over Calais and the whole of Aquitaine. This constitutes an attack on the sovereignty of Parliament. Two countries have a claim to sovereignty over the islands. We must respect the sovereignty of member states. fears about the transfer of sovereignty to the European Union the handover of sovereignty to the new government the partial loss of sovereignty to supranational institutions She has strong views on preserving national sovereignty. The group is committed to achieving sovereignty for Quebec.
See the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary entry: sovereignty