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[jig-uh-loh, zhig-] /ˈdʒɪg əˌloʊ, ˈʒɪg-/
noun, plural gigolos.
a man living off the earnings or gifts of a woman, especially a younger man supported by an older woman in return for his sexual attentions and companionship.
a male professional dancing partner or escort.
Origin of gigolo
1920-25; < French, masculine derivative of gigolette woman of the streets or public dance halls, probably ultimately derivative of Middle French giguer to frolic (see jig2); cf. giglet, Middle English gig(e)lot, which may have influenced gigolette Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for gigolo
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • It was out of this period that there emerged Giddy, the gigolo.

    Gigolo Edna Ferber
  • A gigolo, generally speaking, is a man who lives off women's money.

    Gigolo Edna Ferber
  • Orson J.'s fee, as he handed it to the gigolo, was the kind that mounted grandly into dollars instead of mere francs.

    Gigolo Edna Ferber
  • The gigolo's face, as he bowed before her, was impassive, inscrutable.

    Gigolo Edna Ferber
  • A very faint dull red crept suddenly over the pallor of the gigolo's face.

    Gigolo Edna Ferber
  • The gigolo's face, as he took it, was not more inscrutable than Mary's as she watched him take it.

    Gigolo Edna Ferber
  • And the Mazzettis put but one interpretation upon a young woman who strolls into the soft darkness of the Promenade with a gigolo.

    Gigolo Edna Ferber
British Dictionary definitions for gigolo


noun (pl) -los
a man who is kept by a woman, esp an older woman
a man who is paid to dance with or escort women
Word Origin
C20: from French, back formation from gigolette girl for hire as a dancing partner, prostitute, from giguer to dance, from gigue a fiddle; compare gigot, gigue, jig
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 gigolo

1922, from French gigolo, formed as a masc. of gigole "tall, thin woman; dancing girl; prostitute," perhaps from verb gigoter "to move the shanks, hop," from gigue "shank," also "fiddle," of Germanic origin. This is perhaps the same word that was borrowed earlier as Middle English giglot (early 14c.) "lewd, wanton girl," which was later applied to males (mid-15c.) with the sense "villainous man." Middle English gigletry meant "lasciviousness, harlotry" (late 14c.).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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