- an emperor: title of any of the former emperors of Russia and, at various times, the sovereigns of other Slavic nations
- any person having great or unlimited power; autocrat
- a person given broad administrative powers to make government policy: the President's energy czar
Origin of czarRussian tsar', contr. of tsesar from Old Church Slavonic c?sar?; probably via Gothic kaisar from Classical Latin Caesar: see Caesar
- also tsar or tzar A male monarch or emperor, especially one of the emperors who ruled Russia until the revolution of 1917.
- A person having great power or authority: an energy czar.
Origin of czarRussian tsar' from Old Russian tsĭsarĭ emperor, king from Old Church Slavonic tsěsarĭ from Gothic kaisar from Greek from Latin Caesar emperor ; see caesar .
Usage Note: The word czar, a borrowing from Russian originally referring to the emperor of Russia, is a cousin of the German word Kaiser; both words descend from the name of the Roman emperor Julius Caesar. The spelling tsar is preferred in most Slavic scholarship, as it follows the standard conventions of Russian transliteration. The spelling czar is the more common form in American English, and is the only one employed in the extended sense “someone in authority,” as in energy czar.
- Alternative spelling of tsar.
- A person assigned to a task-related government oversight office, e.g. "drug czar".
- z car, Z-car