head·​mis·​tress | \ˈhed-ˌmi-strəs, -ˈmi-\

Definition of headmistress 

: a woman heading the staff of a private school

Examples of headmistress in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

Cogswell, a graduate and then headmistress and principal of Lowthorpe School of Landscape Architecture, Gardening, and Horticulture in Groton, Massachusetts, was in high demand. Joan Hunt, Courant Community, "Dynamic Webb House Garden: More Than Just A Pretty Face," 3 July 2018 Throwing their rebellion into sharper relief is their headmistress Hester Appleyard. Sophie Gilbert, The Atlantic, "Picnic at Hanging Rock," 29 May 2018 The 1975 Australian film, based on a 1900 novel by Joan Lindsay, follows six Edwardian-era schoolgirls and their headmistress on a day trip to Hanging Rock, a cliffside park in Victoria, Australia. Steff Yotka, Vogue, "Picnic at Hanging Rock is Back—This Is How 3 Top Designers Have Interpreted the Cult Film," 25 May 2018 In 1840, Dorothea Dix, the former headmistress of a Boston school for girls, had completed a trip to England meant to help recover her health. Howard Husock And, WSJ, "The Case to Bring Back the Asylum," 18 May 2018 Hermione, the smartest witch of her age, is Minister of Magic of course — and Professor Minerva McGonagall is headmistress of Hogwarts. Ale Russian, PEOPLE.com, "Harry Potter and the Cursed Child Casts a Spell on Broadway: All About the Epic Two-Part Show," 21 Apr. 2018 The woman in question, Eileen Powers, retired as Louise S. McGehee School's headmistress after 20 years. Sue Strachan, NOLA.com, "Louise S. McGehee School headmistress retires, gets Jazz Fest-style send off," 8 Apr. 2018 The biggest transformation, however, is in Mrs. Hester Appleyard, the English headmistress of the girls' boarding college isolated in Australian bushland. David Rooney, The Hollywood Reporter, "'Picnic at Hanging Rock': TV Review | Berlin 2018," 20 Feb. 2018 Endor is an appealingly weird mix of medievalism and science fiction, presided over by an imperious headmistress voiced by Kate Winslet. A. O. Scott, New York Times, "Review: ‘Mary and the Witch’s Flower’ Chases a Girl and Her Broomstick," 18 Jan. 2018

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

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First Known Use of headmistress

1730, in the meaning defined above

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Last Updated

24 Sep 2018

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The first known use of headmistress was in 1730

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English Language Learners Definition of headmistress

: a woman who is the head of a U.S. private school

: a woman who is the head of a British school


head·​mis·​tress | \ˈhed-ˌmi-strəs \

Kids Definition of headmistress

: a woman who heads the staff of a private school

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to clear from alleged fault or guilt

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