Get the details behind our redesign


[kyoo-rey-ter, kyoo r-ey- for 1–3; kyoo r-uh-ter for 4] /kyʊˈreɪ tər, ˈkyʊər eɪ- for 1–3; ˈkyʊər ə tər for 4/
the person in charge of a museum, art collection, etc.
a person who selects content for presentation, as on a website.
a manager; superintendent.
Law. a guardian of a minor, lunatic, or other incompetent, especially with regard to his or her property.
1325-75; < Latin, equivalent to cūrā(re) to care for, attend to (see cure) + -tor -tor; replacing Middle English curatour < Anglo-French < Latin as above
Related forms
[kyoo r-uh-tawr-ee-uh l, -tohr-] /ˌkyʊər əˈtɔr i əl, -ˈtoʊr-/ (Show IPA),
curatorship, noun
subcurator, noun
subcuratorial, adjective
subcuratorship, noun Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
Cite This Source
Examples for curator
  • She has also wangled a splendid job as a curator for an art collection and doing community outreach.
  • All that, and one helping hand a guest might not expect: a hotel art curator.
  • Instead she made a phone call, whispered discreetly, then hung up and told me that the curator would be down in a moment.
  • No architect for the building has yet been chosen, let alone a curator for the finished project.
  • The curator of a local museum has asked you to design an exhibit highlighting your life.
  • The impatient curator gives you only two hours, basically enough time to go through the papyri twice.
  • His choices are bound to be informed by his gifts as art historian and curator but also by a rather less obvious attribute.
  • He is a former zoological curator and scientific journal editor, and has studied primate behavior in captive and wild primates.
  • The curator decides the terms, sets the tone, and selects the works to be displayed.
  • The curator of the local museum is proud of her charges.
British Dictionary definitions for curator


the administrative head of a museum, art gallery, or similar institution
(law, mainly Scot) a guardian of a minor, mentally ill person, etc
Derived Forms
curatorial (ˌkjʊərəˈtɔːrɪəl) adjective
curatorship, noun
Word Origin
C14: from Latin: one who cares, from cūrāre to care for, from cūra care
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
Cite This Source
Word Origin and History for curator
mid-14c., from L. curator "overseer, guardian," from curare (see curate). Originally of minors, lunatics, etc.; meaning "officer in charge of a museum, library, etc." is from 1660s.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source

Word of The Day

Difficulty index for curator

Some English speakers likely know this word

Word Value for curator

Scrabble Words With Friends