majordomo

noun

ma·​jor·​do·​mo ˌmā-jər-ˈdō-(ˌ)mō How to pronounce majordomo (audio)
plural majordomos
1
: a head steward of a large household (such as a palace)
2
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.

Examples of majordomo in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web With Herbert, and with palace majordomo Agnes (Riseborough), The Regime is attempting to insert some level of drama into all the scenes about how the rest of the country has to dance to Elena’s ridiculous tunes. Alan Sepinwall, Rolling Stone, 29 Feb. 2024 The majordomo returned and handed Boba a large bag. Brian Truitt, USA TODAY, 22 Aug. 2023 The property was cared for by her majordomo, Vic, a gay Englishman who’d previously run a household for Bette Davis and who was tasked with everything from cleaning up after her dogs to laying out dress options for various social engagements. Seth Abramovitch, The Hollywood Reporter, 27 Apr. 2023 Jade Mountain offers a package to hike with your majordomo from the resort who will ensure your safety and comfort throughout the hike. James Barrett, Men's Health, 6 Apr. 2023 The ominous visit from his majordomo. Erik Kain, Forbes, 5 Jan. 2022 The revered majordomo died of a heart ailment in 1996 at age 82, at the Getty residence. James Reginato, Town & Country, 5 July 2022 His devotees range from music superstars including Rihanna and A$AP Rocky to the art world majordomo Sterling Ruby. Vogue Runway, Vogue, 22 Nov. 2022 And the Far & Away guides are a wonder — equal parts Sherpa, raconteur, majordomo, chef, and naturalist. Christopher Solomon, Travel + Leisure, 20 Mar. 2022

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'majordomo.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

Etymology

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

First Known Use

1589, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of majordomo was in 1589

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Cite this Entry

“Majordomo.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/majordomo. Accessed 13 Apr. 2024.

Kids Definition

majordomo

noun
ma·​jor·​do·​mo ˌmā-jər-ˈdō-mō How to pronounce majordomo (audio)
plural majordomos
: a person in charge of a great and especially of a royal household

More from Merriam-Webster on majordomo

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