1. Of or relating to a monarch.
2. Of the rank of a monarch.
3. Of, relating to, or in the service of a kingdom.
4. Issued or performed by a monarch: a royal warrant; a royal visit.
5. Founded, chartered, or authorized by a monarch: a royal society of musicians.
6. Befitting royalty; stately: royal treatment.
a. Superior, as in size or quality.
b. Used as an intensive: "It would be a first-class royal mess" (Sam Nunn).
1. Informal A member of a monarch's family: "Among the resort's distinguished visitors are Swedish and Spanish royals" (Alistair Scott).
2. Nautical A sail set on the royalmast.
3. A paper size, 20 by 25 inches for printing, 19 by 24 inches for writing.
the royal road
A way or method that presents no difficulties: the royal road to success.
[Middle English, from Old French, from Latin rēgālis, from rēx, rēg-, king; see reg- in the Appendix of Indo-European roots.]
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2020 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
Indo-European & Semitic Roots Appendices
Thousands of entries in the dictionary include etymologies that trace their origins back to reconstructed proto-languages. You can obtain more information about these forms in our online appendices:
The Indo-European appendix covers nearly half of the Indo-European roots that have left their mark on English words. A more complete treatment of Indo-European roots and the English words derived from them is available in our Dictionary of Indo-European Roots.