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

majordomo

play
noun ma·jor·do·mo \ˌmā-jər-ˈdō-(ˌ)mō\

Simple Definition of majordomo

  • : the person who runs a large house

  • : someone who runs an organization or a project

Source: Merriam-Webster's Learner's Dictionary

Full Definition of majordomo

plural

majordomos

  1. 1 :  a head steward of a large household (as a palace)

  2. 2 :  butler, steward

  3. 3 :  a person who speaks, makes arrangements, or takes charge for another; broadly :  the person who runs an enterprise <the majordomo of the fair>

Did You Know?

Majordomo has relatives in Spanish ("mayordomo") and Italian (the now obsolete "maiordomo"), and English speakers borrowed the term from one of these languages. All three words - "majordomo," "mayordomo," and "maiordomo" - ultimately come from the Medieval Latin major domus, meaning "chief of the house." In its earliest uses, "majordomo" referred to the head steward of a royal household. The position was a high one with some relatively weighty responsibilities. Later, in the U.S., the word was used for the steward or overseer of a ranch. Since then, the word's meaning has extended even further; today, "majordomo" can designate any person who takes charge of another's affairs, be they business or personal.

Origin and Etymology of majordomo

Spanish mayordomo or obsolete Italian maiordomo, from Medieval Latin major domus, literally, chief of the house


First Known Use: 1589


Seen and Heard

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

WORD OF THE DAY

a jerking and twitching of the body

Get Word of the Day daily email!

WORD GAMES

Take a 3-minute break and test your skills!

two-chairs-on-a-pier-by-the-ocean-in-summer

Which of the following words means “of or relating to summer”?

vernal brumal estival hiemal
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