noun tu·te·lage \ˈtü-tə-lij, ˈtyü-\

Definition of tutelage

  1. 1a :  instruction especially of an individualb :  a guiding influence a business under the tutelage of a new director

  2. 2 :  the state of being under a guardian or tutor

  3. 3a :  an act or process of serving as guardian or protector :  guardianshipb :  hegemony over a foreign territory :  trusteeship 2

tutelage was our Word of the Day on 02/06/2011. Hear the podcast!

Examples of tutelage in a sentence

  1. The company is relying on the tutelage of its new CEO to increase profits.

  2. a governess overseeing the tutelage of the family's children

Did You Know?

The Latin verb tuēri means "to look at" or "to guard." When "tutelage" first began appearing in print in the early 1600s, it was used mainly in the protective sense of "tuēri," as writers described serfs and peasants of earlier eras as being "under the tutelage of their lord." Over time, however, the word's meaning shifted away from guardianship and toward instruction. This pattern of meaning can also be seen in the related nouns "tutor" (which shifted from "a guardian" to "a private teacher") and "tuition" (which now refers to the act or profession of teaching or the cost of instruction but originally meant "protection, care, or custody especially as exercised by a parent or guardian over a child or ward").

Origin and Etymology of tutelage

Latin tutela protection, guardian (from tutari to protect, frequentative of tueri to look at, guard) + English -age

First Known Use: 1605

TUTELAGE Defined for English Language Learners


noun tu·te·lage \ˈtü-tə-lij, ˈtyü-\

Definition of tutelage for English Language Learners

  • : the teaching of an individual student by a teacher

  • : an act of guarding or protecting something

  • : helpful influence or guidance

Seen and Heard

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feeling or affected by lethargy

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