yeo·​man | \ ˈyō-mən How to pronounce yeoman (audio) \

Definition of yeoman

1a : an attendant or officer in a royal or noble household
b : a person attending or assisting another : retainer
d : a naval petty officer who performs clerical duties
2a : a person who owns and cultivates a small farm specifically : one belonging to a class of English freeholders below the gentry
b : a person of the social rank of yeoman
3 : one that performs great and loyal service did a yeoman's job in seeing the program through

Examples of yeoman in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web The 5-foot-8, 215-pound tailback did the yeoman’s work in a nearly seven-minute touchdown drive in the third quarter, carrying the ball eight times — including five straight — for 49 yards and the 1-yard touchdown. Julie Jag, The Salt Lake Tribune, "Bachmeier passes Boise State past Utah State 42-13 in opener," 25 Oct. 2020 Elfert was an engineering yeoman, serving below deck. Sharon Edwards,, "WWII vet recalls the Japanese surrender 75 years ago," 14 Sep. 2020 The yeoman’s work of Daniel Dale, and others like him, remains appreciated. Washington Post, "Fact-checking Trump’s lies is essential. It’s also increasingly fruitless.," 29 Aug. 2020 Auction house Henry Aldridge & Son explains that the telegrams are sold via a descendant of Harold Benson Key, the yeoman of signals onboard Royal Navy destroyer HMS Cossack, which participated in the pursuit and destruction of Bismarck. Fox News, "WWII naval telegrams detailing the sinking of Hitler’s most powerful battleship emerge," 14 Aug. 2020 Michael O’Rielly has done yeoman work as a member of the Federal Communications Commission, but this week the White House abruptly pulled his renomination for another five-year term. The Editorial Board, WSJ, "Mike O’Rielly’s Free Speech Fall," 4 Aug. 2020 The cohort was led by a former yeoman soldier named Wat Tyler and an itinerant, radical preacher named John Ball. Susan Wade, The Conversation, "Uprisings after pandemics have happened before – just look at the English Peasant Revolt of 1381," 5 June 2020 Travis Best played the entire fourth quarter for a second-straight game, Jalen Rose hit two fourth-quarter 3s and Antonio Davis continued his yeoman's work in the paint. Matthew Glenesk, Indianapolis Star, "How Pacers pushed Michael Jordan, Bulls to the brink in 1998: 'They saw the fear in Chicago's eyes.'," 15 May 2020 In other words, the B.L.S. did yeoman’s work in tough circumstances, and its report provided the most comprehensive picture yet of how the coronavirus shutdowns have affected the economy. John Cassidy, The New Yorker, "The Most Alarming Thing About the Worst Jobs Report in History," 8 May 2020

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

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for yeoman

Middle English yoman, yeman

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The first known use of yeoman was in the 14th century

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Cite this Entry

“Yeoman.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 12 May. 2021.

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English Language Learners Definition of yeoman

: an officer in the U.S. Navy who works as a clerk
: a farmer in the past who owned a small amount of land


yeo·​man | \ ˈyō-mən How to pronounce yeoman (audio) \
plural yeomen\ -​mən \

Kids Definition of yeoman

1 : a petty officer in the navy who works as a clerk
2 : a person who owns and cultivates a small farm

More from Merriam-Webster on yeoman

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for yeoman

Nglish: Translation of yeoman for Spanish Speakers Encyclopedia article about yeoman

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