noun mis·tress \ˈmis-trəs\

Definition of mistress

  1. 1 :  a woman who has power, authority, or ownership: such asa :  the female head of a householdb :  a woman who employs or supervises servants The servants were required to do their mistress's bidding without question.c :  a woman who is in charge of a school or other establishment Mrs. Goddard was the mistress of a school — Jane Austend :  a woman of the Scottish nobility having a status comparable to that of a master

  2. 2a chiefly British :  a female teacher or tutorb :  a woman who has achieved mastery in some field She was a mistress of music.

  3. 3 :  something personified as female that rules, directs, or dominates when Rome was mistress of the world

  4. 4a :  a woman other than his wife with whom a married man has a continuing sexual relationshipb archaic :  sweetheart

  5. 5a —used archaically as a title prefixed to the name of a married or unmarried womanb chiefly Southern US and Midland US :  mrs. 1a

Examples of mistress in a sentence

  1. Servants were required to do the mistress's bidding without question.

  2. The dog was always obedient to its master and mistress.

  3. the master and mistress of the house

  4. a married man who has a mistress

  5. His wife suspected that the woman she'd seen with him was his mistress.

Origin and Etymology of mistress

Middle English maistresse, from Anglo-French mestresse, feminine of mestre master — more at master

First Known Use: 14th century

MISTRESS Defined for Kids


noun mis·tress \ˈmi-strəs\

Definition of mistress for Students

  1. 1 :  a female teacher

  2. 2 :  a woman who has control or authority over another person, an animal, or a thing … the old woman had no loyalty toward her mistress … — Esther Forbes, Johnny Tremain

Seen and Heard

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to criticize severely

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