past master

noun

Definition of past master

1 : one who has held the office of worshipful master in a lodge of Freemasons or of master in a guild, club, or society
2 [alteration of passed master] : one who is expert : adept

Synonyms & Antonyms for past master

Synonyms

Antonyms

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Examples of past master in a Sentence

He's a past master at finding ways to get out of trouble. They are past masters of the art of propaganda.
Recent Examples on the Web Does this past master of starting crazes see the Reddit phenomenon as a long-overdue democratization of the stock market, or a frenzy detached from the fundamentals of investing? Shawn Tully, Fortune, 22 Mar. 2021 The locked-room mystery—not just a whodunnit but a how-done-it—pays homage to past masters such as John Dickson Carr and Gaston Leroux. The Economist, 18 Dec. 2019 When the ensemble made its first national tour, playing Orchestra Hall in September 1992, Marsalis and friends were trying to show that America needed a world-class jazz orchestra that could honor past masters while forging future ones. Howard Reich, chicagotribune.com, 16 Nov. 2019 Like Carmela, museums are past masters at putting a respectable face on barbarism. Rhonda Lieberman, The New Republic, 23 Sep. 2019 After all, the big fees that credit card companies and banks extract from merchants are ripe for disruption––and Sprecher's a past master at making an array of transactions faster and cheaper. Shawn Tully, Fortune, 20 Sep. 2019 The projects that make up the bond propositions have been identified by residents through the citizen satisfaction survey, past master plans and citizen boards. Roy Kent, Houston Chronicle, 29 Aug. 2019 Mr Haradinaj is a past master at snatching victory from the jaws of defeat. The Economist, 25 July 2019 Then there’s Chicago trumpeter Orbert Davis’ homage to one of the South Side’s most revered past masters, pianist Willie Pickens. Howard Reich, chicagotribune.com, 7 June 2019 See More

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

First Known Use of past master

1762, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Time Traveler for past master

Time Traveler

The first known use of past master was in 1762

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Dictionary Entries Near past master

pastlessness

past master

past mistress

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Statistics for past master

Cite this Entry

“Past master.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/past%20master. Accessed 13 Aug. 2022.

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