Definition of duenna in English:


Line breaks: du¦enna
Pronunciation: /duːˈɛnə


  • An older woman acting as a governess and companion in charge of girls, especially in a Spanish family; a chaperone.
    More example sentences
    • She brought an entourage of some sixty people, from her aristocratic duenna, Dona Elvira, to her bishops and chaplains, her ladies, her pages, her fool, her butler and her cooks.
    • But, in spite of a large padlock on the door, Leander, a young lover, presents himself during Diego's absence, cajoles the duenna and Mungo, the servant, and gains admission to the lady.


mid 17th century: earlier form of Spanish dueña, from Latin domina 'lady, mistress'.

More definitions of duenna

Definition of duenna in:

Get more from Oxford Dictionaries

Subscribe to remove adverts and access premium resources

Word of the day milord
Pronunciation: mɪˈlɔːd
used to address an English nobleman