Share this entry

cup-bearer Line breaks: cup-bearer

Definition of cup-bearer in English:


chiefly historical
A person who serves wine, especially in a royal or noble household.
Example sentences
  • The emblem presents its moral subject with the motto ‘One ought to rejoice in God,’ and adds the mythological exemplum of Ganymede, the beautiful boy seized by Jupiter and carried to Olympus to serve as his cup-bearer.
  • Sons of feudal families were pressed into honourable service in the courts of local rulers, as gentlemen of the chamber, masters of the household, stewards, carvers, cup-bearers, and masters of the horse.
  • During the early part of the Anglo-Saxon period a woman's place was not at the table other than as a cup-bearer; the task of cup-bearing even included the lord's wife and daughter, with the most honoured guests being served by them.

Definition of cup-bearer in:

Share this entry


What do you find interesting about this word or phrase?

Comments that don't adhere to our Community Guidelines may be moderated or removed.

Get more from Oxford Dictionaries

Subscribe to remove adverts and access premium resources

Word of the day fortissimo
Pronunciation: fɔːˈtɪsɪməʊ
(especially as a direction) very loud or loudly