Definition of viceroy in English:

Share this entry


Pronunciation: /ˈvīsˌroi/


1A ruler exercising authority in a colony on behalf of a sovereign.
Example sentences
  • Having installed various Indian statesmen, religious figures and public benefactors in place of sundry British sovereigns, viceroys and generals, we have cheerfully proceeded to forget them.
  • The overriding authority, the viceroy, whatever you wish to call him, actually has a considerable control and power, but they must be clear and honest with the local population.
  • The British named most of them after British kings and queens and viceroys.
governor, deputy, representative, proconsul;
regent, steward
2A migratory orange and black butterfly that closely resembles the monarch but is typically somewhat smaller. The caterpillar feeds on willow leaves, and the adult mimics the unpalatable monarch.
  • Limenitis archippus, subfamily Limenitidinae, family Nymphalidae.
Example sentences
  • I could tell a monarch butterfly from a viceroy, without eating it.
  • Take the oft-cited classic case of Batesian mimicry involving the dead-ringer resemblance between monarch and viceroy butterflies.
  • We mimic them as aptly as a viceroy butterfly mimics the colouration of a monarch.



Pronunciation: /ˌvīsˈroi-əl/
Example sentences
  • In Naples, these lawyers were often called togati, and the viceroyal administrations fostered them in all the Spanish territories in order to undermine the traditional nobility.
  • During the viceroyal period in the New Spain, the building belonged to the Society of Jesus.
  • When the Spanish Colony was established, one of the main objectives of the viceroyal administration was to obtain greater financial resources for the Crown.


Pronunciation: /ˈvīsˌroiˌSHip/
Example sentences
  • An audit found that the entire interim government budget during his viceroyship - US $8.8 billion - could not be accounted for, as there simply were no financial controls on it whatsoever.
  • Peru was the richest province of all of Spanish America and the viceroyship of the area was a hugely important role.
  • As we said, there is very little disagreement with the longer reconstruction for the first 150 years, even to the 12-year viceroyship of Jeroboam II with Jehoash.


Early 16th century: from archaic French, from vice- 'in place of' + roi 'king'.

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: vice·roy

Share this entry

What do you find interesting about this word or phrase?

Comments that don't adhere to our Community Guidelines may be moderated or removed.

Related Words