Adjective "Subordinate" definition and examples



Definitions and examples


Lower in rank or position.
  1. 'Leith is languid, conceited, a natural leader of men despite his subordinate rank.'
  2. 'The same Articles state that such executive power shall be exercised by the President or Governor through officers subordinate to him.'
  3. 'The negative side of his personality suggests that he strongly dislikes being in subordinate positions.'
  4. 'In spite of young Kano's academic superiority he was relegated to a subordinate position, because of his physical inferiority.'
  5. 'Thus women are now in the workforce but in positions where they are subordinate to men and under their control.'
  6. 'To begin with, men may be able to reap the benefits of church-based support because, unlike women, they generally do not occupy a subordinate position in the church.'
  7. 'Though corruption has been rampant among the subordinate ranks, senior officers, by and large, were not tainted by corruption.'
  8. 'However, the figure of the virgin and its supporting theology are subordinate to her son.'
  9. 'For a population that has been forced into a permanent subordinate position by an occupying power, this disparity is not only a hardship but a searing humiliation as well.'
  10. 'Although this was by no means an uncommon pattern in late nineteenth-century Europe, it reflected Italy's relatively subordinate position on international markets.'
  11. 'in adventure stories, character must be subordinate to action'
  12. 'Though important, that question is subordinate to another: whether Islamic fundamentalism can make its peace with religious pluralism.'
  13. 'But John's role as baptizer is subordinate to his main task, which is to bear witness to Jesus.'
  14. 'Second, experience may reveal that our operating principles are subordinate to even more fundamental principles that should overrule them.'
  15. 'In other words, containment's second, subordinate goal was regime change.'
  16. 'What the authors/protagonists say at any given juncture of the text is of subordinate importance to the way they say it.'
  17. 'Robinson tried to bring the baptism of the Spirit and water baptism together though he continued to speak of the external act as subordinate and secondary to the baptism of the Spirit.'
  18. 'Aboriginal rights are generally subordinate to other public policy priorities, and as a result distinct cultures are threatened'
  19. 'As for the theatrical cut - it's clearly subordinate to the extended cut that's on the second DVD release.'
  20. 'He painted many easel pictures as well as murals, and though he insisted they were subordinate to his wall paintings, they were important in helping to establish his international reputation.'
  21. 'There is an element of caramelization in the browning of foods which are deep fried; but this is subordinate to the more important sugar-amine browning.'


A person under the authority or control of another within an organization.
  1. 'Some great commanders showed a determination to control their subordinates, to enforce order, and even to attempt reforms.'
  2. 'The mere absence of formal legal authority to control the actions of subordinates should therefore not be understood to preclude the imposition of such responsibility.'
  3. 'Later in the game he'll have the possibility to control subordinates.'
  4. 'Sometimes male workers collectively mocked and challenged managerial and supervisory claims for respect and authority from their shop-floor subordinates.'
  5. 'But reading the riot act is what parents do to children, what teachers do to pupils, and what people in authority do to subordinates.'
  6. 'To limit the number of decisions the commander and staff must make, subordinates must have the authority to make decisions.'
  7. 'Chen has criticized upper level prosecutors general for failing to control their more reckless subordinates.'
  8. 'Do you anticipate any resistance to your authority from your subordinates, almost all of whom are male?'
  9. 'Assisted by the staff, they visualize the operation, describe it in terms of intent and guidance, and direct the actions of subordinates within that intent.'
  10. 'In this way trust and confidence will be built among joint forces air component commanders and their staffs, and also among higher authorities toward their subordinates.'


Treat or regard as of lesser importance than something else.
  1. 'The result is that primary literature is becoming subordinated to criticism, a reversal of priorities.'
  2. 'Under trade agreements every value, human rights, workers rights and environmental standards, are subordinated to economic values.'
  3. 'Fire safety is far too important to be subordinated to political agendas.'
  4. 'Most were working in circumstances where social mores were subordinated to much more compelling things like the need to survive.'
  5. 'So what it does allow is the economic welfare of the country to be subordinated to some over-arching political interest.'
  6. 'But, in each case, that individual's welfare is subordinated to the collective goal.'
  7. '‘Efficiency is subordinated to efficacy’ is a neat phrase, but is it a true one?'
  8. 'It's cramped, it's hideously ugly, and even in the sunshine it has the effect of proclaiming that all individual joy in life has been subordinated to some dour commercial purpose.'
  9. 'The question of whether an action is right or wrong is subordinated to the question of whether or not it will lead to a firmer grip on power for the prince.'
  10. 'But there is something transcendental about shared values that shouldn't be subordinated to tactical requirements.'
  11. 'to define life would be to subordinate it to reason'
  12. 'New Christian doctrines stripped Sophia of her divine qualities, dramatically subordinating her to the Father and to Christ as her male partner and savior.'


1. placed in or belonging to a lower order or rank.

2. of less importance; secondary.

3. subject to or under the authority of a superior.

4. subservient or inferior.

5. subject; dependent.

6. Grammar. acting as a modifier, as when I finished, which is subordinate to They were glad in They were glad when I finished. noting or pertaining to a subordinating conjunction.

7. Obsolete. submissive. noun

8. a subordinate person or thing. verb (used with object), subordinated

More examples(as adjective)

"places can be subordinate in places."

"corridors can be subordinate in places."

"cambridges can be subordinate in places."

"sciences can be subordinate to theologies."

"people can be subordinate to people."

More examples++


Late Middle English: from medieval Latin subordinatus ‘placed in an inferior rank’, from Latin sub- ‘below’ + ordinare ‘ordain’.