pro·​pri·​e·​tor | \ prə-ˈprī-ə-tər How to pronounce proprietor (audio) \

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

Synonyms for proprietor


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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 Richie, your former staff and a new proprietor are taking very good care of your legacy. Sheryl Julian,, 12 May 2022 The restaurant’s original proprietor, Alice Martin opened the original location of her namesake restaurant at the junction of Pineleaf Street and Carter Hill Road sometime in the late 1920s and early ‘30s. Shauna Stuart |, al, 4 May 2022 The proprietor of a tiny noodle restaurant creates a community in Tokyo, one bowl of ramen at a time. Detroit Free Press Staff, Detroit Free Press, 14 Mar. 2022 At Flûte Bar in New York, proprietor Herve Rousseau serves Champagne out of two types of flute. Lettie Teague, WSJ, 28 Apr. 2022 Then, in 2019, Rocco Forte, the proprietor of many of Europe's most fashionable hotels, from the Hotel de Russie in Rome to Browns in London, purchased the property at auction and embarked on a tip-to-toe refurbishment. Travel + Leisure, 12 Apr. 2022 Po Chang, the proprietor of Zen West Roadside Cantina, a Tex-Mex restaurant and bar, met Middleman, a Mount Vernon resident, through a mutual friend, and a friendship of years blossomed. Frederick N. Rasmussen,, 17 Feb. 2022 But organic farming—meticulous stewardship of this land—is just the starting point for Massimo Padova, proprietor of Riofavara winery in the Val di Noto. Sara L. Schneider, Robb Report, 14 Feb. 2022 Jeffrey Wolfe, proprietor of Wolfe’s Wine Shoppe in Coral Gables, Fla., has also found fewer customers likely to harbor anti-Chardonnay prejudice—though an older generation of drinkers is more likely to express fear. Lettie Teague, WSJ, 3 Feb. 2022 See More

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.

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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Time Traveler for proprietor

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The first known use of proprietor was in 1537

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Dictionary Entries Near proprietor

proprietary stamp



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Statistics for proprietor

Last Updated

15 May 2022

Cite this Entry

“Proprietor.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 22 May. 2022.

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More Definitions for proprietor


pro·​pri·​e·​tor | \ prə-ˈprī-ə-tər How to pronounce proprietor (audio) \

Kids Definition of proprietor

: a person who owns something : owner


pro·​pri·​e·​tor | \ prə-ˈprī-ə-tər How to pronounce proprietor (audio) \

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

More from Merriam-Webster on proprietor

Nglish: Translation of proprietor for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of proprietor for Arabic Speakers


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