\ ˈbȯd How to pronounce bawd (audio) \

Definition of bawd

1 obsolete : pander
2a : one who keeps a house of prostitution : madam

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Examples of bawd in a Sentence

in the 17th century the port was a notorious hangout for Caribbean pirates and their bawds
Recent Examples on the Web Lewd women, bawds and adventuresses were not welcome in courts, nor were prostitutes or immoral characters. Clement Knox, Time, "When U.S. Laws Punished Men for 'Seduction,' Women Were the Ones Who Got Judged," 4 Feb. 2020 Two rival madams—based on real historical characters—are fighting each other for a customer base: earthy bawd Mrs. Margaret Wells and elegant, conniving Mrs. Lydia Quigley. Viv Groskop, Newsweek, "Review: New Drama Series 'Harlots' Takes on the Oldest Profession in Riotous Fashion," 21 Mar. 2017

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'bawd.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of bawd

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for bawd

Middle English bawde

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The first known use of bawd was in the 14th century

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Cite this Entry

“Bawd.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 4 Mar. 2021.

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