Share this entry

Share this page

dowager

Line breaks: dow|ager
Pronunciation: /ˈdaʊədʒə
 
/

Definition of dowager in English:

noun

1A widow with a title or property derived from her late husband: [as modifier]: the dowager duchess [postpositive]: the queen dowager
More example sentences
  • By the time she married Prince Albert I of Monaco in 1889, she was a wealthy woman in her own right who carried an important French title as the dowager duchess of Richelieu.
  • In the front pew were the dowager duchess, the eighth Duke of Rivenston, the Duke of Stafford and the Lady Lorraine.
  • It was just one of the highly-prized pins doled out that night to travellers who - against the welter of new, sleek cruisers - remain loyal to Cunard's unpretentious ship: more a dowager duchess than a sea sprite.
1.1 informal A dignified elderly woman: a handsome dowager was standing in front of the mirror
More example sentences
  • But even this global giant has to listen up, at the annual stakeholders’ meeting, to elderly dowagers complaining that the new parking bollards installed by the consortium clash horribly with their bourgainvillea.
  • Lady Gwyneth grinned, looking for all the world like an excited child unleashed without adult supervision in a toy shop, instead of a dignified dowager of the ton with three grown-up grandchildren.
  • She whispered in the dowager's ear and went off to find the ladies withdrawing room.

Origin

mid 16th century: from Old French douagiere, from douage 'dower', from douer 'endow', from Latin dotare 'endow' (see dower).

Words that rhyme with dowager

voyagerharbinger

Definition of dowager in:

Share this entry

Share this page

 

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 emulous
Pronunciation: ˈɛmjʊləs
adjective
seeking to emulate someone or something