Definition of steward in English:

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Pronunciation: /ˈstjuːəd/


1A person employed to look after the passengers on a ship, aircraft, or train.
Example sentences
  • Arriving passengers greet their cabin stewards and table waiters like long-lost family friends with smiling handshakes, hugs and much backslapping.
  • When I disembarked on my last cruise in December, I ran into the young man who had been our dining-room steward on the ship.
  • But as the pair were returning to York, a steward on the train asked them if they would wait for all other passengers to leave first.
flight attendant, cabin attendant, member of the cabin staff;
stewardess, air hostess
North American informal stew
2A person responsible for supplies of food to a college, club, or other institution.
Example sentences
  • When he arrived, the large room was filled with people, ranging from the cook and the steward to the engineer and the linguist.
  • He became a steward in the merchant navy, and was a trade union activist.
  • She is a steward aboard the ship that had been stationed off the coast of Iraq since early this year.
major-domo, seneschal, manciple;
3An official appointed to supervise arrangements or keep order at a large public event, for example a race, match, or demonstration.
Example sentences
  • Track officials ordered the evacuation of a crowd of about 1,500 in the grandstand and, with two minutes to post time, the stewards ordered the third race cancelled.
  • Following an inquiry, stewards disqualified him from both races and redistributed his purse earnings earlier this year.
  • The stewards inquired into the performance of Grafton Style, which finished 11th in this contest.
official, marshal, organizer
4 short for shop steward.
5A person employed to manage another’s property, especially a large house or estate.
Example sentences
  • Landowners protected their interests by studying land law at the Inns of Court and by appointing qualified stewards to manage estates effectively.
  • A good steward manages his owner's property well.
  • He lived in the steward's house and owned most of the estate at Annaghmakerrig.
(estate) manager, agent, overseer, custodian, caretaker;
British  land agent, bailiff;
Scottish  factor
historical reeve
5.1British , chiefly historical An officer of the royal household, especially an administrator of Crown estates: [in titles]: Chief Steward of the Duchy of Lancaster
More example sentences
  • Although he begged for his life, Thomas Percy, Earl of Worcester, a Knight of the Garter, a former steward of the royal household and a veteran of some of the fiercest battles of the French wars, was put to the axe.
  • He served as steward of the household to Edward IV and then to Richard III, who gave him the Garter.
  • Francis, the fifth Duke of Bedford had extensive estates in Bedfordshire and, in 1792, he appointed Farey as the land steward for his Woburn estates.
5.2A person whose responsibility it is to take care of something: farmers pride themselves on being stewards of the countryside
More example sentences
  • Underlying it all is the desire to be good stewards of the land.
  • "Our hope is just to be good stewards of the land," he said.
  • How are you a faithful steward of the gifts God has given you for the sake of the whole church?


[with object]
1(Of an official) supervise arrangements or keep order at (a large public event): the event was organized and stewarded properly
More example sentences
  • Kingston University's equal opportunities officer said students and volunteers would help steward the event.
  • The village society is appealing for more volunteers to help steward the event, particularly people with knowledge of sound systems and amplification.
  • Proceeds are ploughed back into the show, with some donations going to Bingley Rotary Club, which stewards the event.
2Manage or look after (another’s property): security is found in reparticipating in community and stewarding nature
More example sentences
  • What if all other forms of capital were to be stewarded this way?
  • A year ago, they made plans to leave it to the foundation which will steward the land.
  • Even if they did not quite trust him to steward their money, they trusted capable, honest Paul.


Old English stīweard, from stig (probably in the sense 'house, hall') + weard 'ward'. The verb dates from the early 17th century.

Words that rhyme with steward


For editors and proofreaders

Line breaks: stew|ard

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