1678, from Latinized form of Gk. demiourgos, lit. "public or skilled worker" (from demos "common people" + ergos "work"). The title of a magistrate in some Gk. city-states and the Achæan League; taken in Platonic philosophy as a name for the maker of the world. In the Gnostic system, "conceived as a being subordinate to the Supreme Being, and sometimes as the author of evil" [OED].