pro·pri·e·tor | \prə-ˈprī-ə-tər \

Definition of proprietor 

1 : one granted ownership of a colony (such as one of the original American colonies) and full prerogatives of establishing a government and distributing land

2a : a person who has the legal right or exclusive title to something : owner

b : one having an interest (such as control or present use) less than absolute and exclusive right

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Other Words from proprietor

proprietorship \prə-ˈprī-ə-tər-ˌship \ noun

Synonyms for proprietor


holder, owner, possessor

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Examples of proprietor in a Sentence

She is the proprietor of the store. the proprietor of a used-car dealership

Recent Examples on the Web

Wen Kosters-Qin, proprietor of Sustain Juicery at 4061 Bellaire, recently opened JuiceWell in the new Regions Bank building at 3773 Richmond near Greenway Plaza. Houston Chronicle, "JuiceWell to join Hopdoddy, International Smoke as new CityCentre tenants," 30 May 2018 This configuration would be better suited to a sole proprietor with towing and hauling as his or her business, or someone with a heavy hobby, to double as the family car. Andy Mikonis,, "Ford F-350 Super Duty is a refined towing beast," 1 June 2017 At Carson-Newman, the proprietor of the Massey Ratings has been known to follow the Eagles’ softball team. Joan Niesen,, "The Computer Poll Uprising: Creators of the BCS's Most Controversial Component Look Back," 11 July 2018 The proprietor of the chic new Victor bar in Montrose has announced an equally posh sister restaurant next door: Bon jour, La Villa Saint-Tropez! Greg Morago, Houston Chronicle, "La Villa Saint-Tropez opens in Montrose," 6 July 2018 Back home in Norfolk, Barge hooked up with record-shop proprietor Frank Guida and his fledgling Legrand Records. Bill Dahl, Chicago Reader, "Gene Barge blew his sax on some of the wildest R&B hits of the 60s," 5 June 2018 According to legislative economists, more than 75 percent of the $11 million yearly sole proprietor tax cut would go to people who earn at least $200,000 a year. Hillary Borrud,, "Oregon lawmakers move quickly to vote on Kate Brown's business tax cut," 21 May 2018 With that, LaMalfa and Joebar proprietors Joe and Cari Vaughn began brainstorming possibilities. Mark Kurlyandchik, Detroit Free Press, "Chicago's Dark Matter Coffee sets up shop in Hazel Park," 15 May 2018 Longtime proprietor Tina Dieu has not set a final date but expects to close in late June. Hanna Krueger,, "Kim Son, 30-year Vietnamese restaurant in Gretna, is closing: report," 12 May 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'proprietor.' 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 proprietor

1537, in the meaning defined at sense 2a

History and Etymology for proprietor

alteration of proprietary entry 1

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Statistics for proprietor

Last Updated

8 Oct 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for proprietor

The first known use of proprietor was in 1537

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English Language Learners Definition of proprietor

: a person who owns a business or property


pro·pri·e·tor | \prə-ˈprī-ə-tər \

Kids Definition of proprietor

: a person who owns something : owner


pro·pri·e·tor | \prə-ˈprī-ə-tər \

Legal Definition of proprietor 

: one who has legal right or exclusive title to something : owner also : one (as a lessee) having an interest (as control or present use) less than absolute or exclusive right

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