Difference Between Empire and Kingdom

By : Neha Dhyani

Updated : Apr 6, 2022, 11:34

Most people think that the term 'Empire' is a synonym for 'Kingdom'. The truth is that the meanings of these terms are very different.

The main difference is that a Kingdom refers to a single or more domain ruled by a King or a Queen, whereas in an Empire, an Emperor or Empress rules a collection of countries. An Empire can consist of many kingdoms as well.

Let's look at the definitions to understand the Difference Between Empire and Kingdom more clearly.

What is an Empire?

An Empire or realm is a group of states or nations controlled by a solitary ruler, an oligarchy, or a sovereign state. An Emperor or Empress rules an empire. They are considered more powerful than Kings or Queens since they have command over a larger geographical region.

Kings or Queens can likewise govern the various states and locales, but the Emperor has the major control of the whole region. An Empire can come into power by legacy or conquest.

A large portion of the strong empires in the world are made by conquering various nations. For example, when a King conquers another region, his Kingdom becomes an Empire, and he becomes an Emperor.

What is a Kingdom?

A Kingdom is a single state or country administered by a King or Queen. A Queen becomes the ruler when the King dies or when there are no male beneficiaries in the Royal family.

Kingdoms can have more than one ruler at a time. A Kingdom ruled by one King is called a Monarchy, and when two people rule a Kingdom, it is called a Biarchy. Similarly, when more than two people rule a certain Kingdom, it is called oligarchy.

Even though a King or Queen is considered the Kingdom's ruler, the Kingdom can also be a part of an Empire. When this happens, the ruler of the Kingdom is under the empire's influence.

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Difference Between Empire and Kingdom

Here's a set of differences presented below in tabular form to help you understand the differences between Empire and Kingdom:

Empire

Kingdom

An Empire is a set of several regions towards one person’s (Emperor or Empress) authority.

A Kingdom is one of the regions that fall under the Empire that a King or a Queen rules.

One person can only rule an Empire, and that is the Emperor or the Empress.

A Kingdom can have more than one ruler at a time. A Kingdom ruled by one King is called a Monarchy, and when two people rule a kingdom, it is called a Biarchy. Similarly, when more than two people rule a certain Kingdom, it is called Oligarchy.

An Empire expands in size by absorbing more regions.

A Kingdom transforms into an Empire when it absorbs other regions.

Generally, an Emperor or Empress is the outright authority who settles on critical decisions regarding the empire; however, in specific cases, powerful aristocrats' voice is also regarded.

A King or Queen is the authority, but on account of a constitutional monarchy, the authority might be restricted by a parliament or the ruling body of ministers.

Examples: British Empire, Roman Empire, Arab Empire, etc.Examples: Saudi Arabia, the United Kingdom, Travancore Kingdom, etc.

Even though they sound like similar concepts, there is many Difference Between Empire and Kingdom. Although no official Empires exist in the modern world, some Kingdoms like the United Kingdom, the Kingdom of Hawaii, the Kingdom of Mali, and so on still exist.

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FAQs on the Difference Between Empire and Kingdom

Q.1. What is the Difference Between Empire and Kingdom?

The Difference Between Empire and Kingdom is that while Empire is a set of several regions towards one person’s (Emperor or Empress) authority, Kingdom is one of the regions that fall under the Empire that is ruled by a King or a Queen.

Q.2. What is the Difference Between Empire and Kingdom in terms of rulers?

The Difference Between Empire and Kingdom in terms of rulers is that while Empire can only be ruled by one person, and that is the Emperor or the Empress, a Kingdom can have more than one ruler at a time.

Q.3. What is the Difference Between Empire and Kingdom in terms of examples?

The Difference Between Empire and Kingdom in terms of examples is that while the examples of Empires are British Empire, Roman Empire, Arab Empire, etc., the examples of Kingdoms are Saudi Arabia, the United Kingdom, Travancore Kingdom, etc.

Q.4. What is the Difference Between Empire and Kingdom in terms of authority?

The Difference Between Empire and Kingdom in terms of authority is that while an Emperor or Empress is the outright authority who settles on critical decisions regarding the empire, A King or Queen is the outright authority in a Kingdom.