Definition of zillionaire
: an immeasurably wealthy person
zillionaire was our Word of the Day on 01/14/2015. Hear the podcast!
Theme music by Joshua Stamper ©2006 New Jerusalem Music/ASCAP
Recent Examples of zillionaire from the Web
The germ of it is an infrastructure paper written by economist Peter Navarro, a business school professor turned trade adviser in the protectionist Trump White House, and Wilbur Ross, the zillionaire secretary of commerce.
These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'zillionaire.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.
Did You Know?
The word millionaire has been used in English to designate a person who is worth a million pounds or dollars, depending on the side of the ocean, since 1786. We borrowed the word straight from the French, whose millions, of course, were in francs. Millionaire eventually no longer sufficed, and English speakers coined billionaire in 1844. Soon afterwards came multimillionaire, followed by multibillionaire in the early 1900s. Once zillion was made up as a humorous word for an indeterminately large number (patterned on million and billion), it was only a matter of time before zillionaire came along as a humorous word for a person of seemingly immeasurable wealth. Zillion and zillionaire aren't used in the most formal of writing, but they have found their way into plenty of serious publications.
Origin and Etymology of zillionaire
zillion + -aire (as in millionaire)
First Known Use: 1946See Words from the same year
Seen and Heard
What made you want to look up zillionaire? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).