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[ih-mer-i-tuh s] /ɪˈmɛr ɪ təs/
retired or honorably discharged from active professional duty, but retaining the title of one's office or position:
dean emeritus of the graduate school; editor in chief emeritus.
noun, plural emeriti
[ih-mer-i-tahy, -tee] /ɪˈmɛr ɪˌtaɪ, -ˌti/ (Show IPA)
an emeritus professor, minister, etc.
1785-95; < Latin ēmeritus having fully earned (past participle of ēmerēre), equivalent to ē- e-1 + meri- earn + -tus past participle suffix Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for emeritus
  • emeritus professors served as their mentors, helping them navigate their freshman and sophomore years.
  • emeritus centers bring retired professors back to campus.
  • At our school, being a full professor is a requirement for eventually having emeritus professor status when you retire.
  • He is distinguished in the way of an emeritus professor and dressed formally, with a scarf wrapped around his neck.
  • emeritus members pay no dues and are removed from the duty roster.
  • emeritus members do not count against the limit on number of active members.
British Dictionary definitions for emeritus


(usually postpositive) retired or honourably discharged from full-time work, but retaining one's title on an honorary basis: a professor emeritus
Word Origin
C19: from Latin, from merēre to deserve; see merit
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
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Word Origin and History for emeritus

c.1600, from Latin emeritus "veteran soldier who has served his time," literally "that has finished work, past service," past participle of emerere "serve out, complete one's service," from ex- "out" (see ex-) + merere "to serve, earn," from PIE *(s)mer- "to get a share of something" (see merit (n.)). First used of retired professors 1794 in American English.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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