Quantcast
Merriam-Webster Logo
  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
  • Scrabble
  • Spanish Central
  • Learner's Dictionary

madam

play
noun, mad·am \ˈma-dəm\

Simple Definition of madam

  • —used to politely speak to a woman who you do not know

  • Madam —used at the start of a formal letter to a woman whose name you do not know

  • Madam —used when you are speaking to a woman who has a high rank or position

Source: Merriam-Webster's Learner's Dictionary

Full Definition of madam

plural madams

  1. 1 plural mesdames play \mā-ˈdäm, -ˈdam\ :  lady —used without a name as a form of respectful or polite address to a woman

  2. 2 :  mistress 1 —used as a title formerly with the given name but now with the surname or especially with a designation of rank or office <Madam Chairman> <Madam President>

  3. 3 :  the female head of a house of prostitution

  4. 4 :  the female head of a household :  wife

Examples of madam in a sentence

  1. <the madam and I are planning to go out for a nice dinner on our anniversary>



Origin of madam

Middle English, from Anglo-French ma dame, literally, my lady


First Known Use: 14th century

Other Forms of Address Terms

Rhymes with madam


MADAM Defined for Kids

madam

play
noun mad·am \ˈma-dəm\

Definition of madam for Students

plural mesdames \mā-ˈdäm, -ˈdam\

  1. —used without a name as a form of polite address to a woman <May I help you, madam?>



Headscratcher for madam

The word madam is spelled the same forwards and backwards. It is also part of a well-known phrase that is also spelled the same forwards and backwards: “Madam, I'm Adam.”



Seen and Heard

What made you want to look up madam? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

WORD OF THE DAY

the range of perception or understanding

Get Word of the Day daily email!

WORD GAMES

Take a 3-minute break and test your skills!

alt-5746713d76276

Which of these is a synonym of nonplus?

disapprove soothe perplex reduce
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

TAKE THE QUIZ
SCRABBLE® Sprint

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ