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grande dame

[gran dam, deym; French grahnd dam] /ˈgræn ˈdæm, ˈdeɪm; French grɑ̃d ˈdam/
noun, plural grandes dames
[gran damz, deymz; French grahnd dam] /ˈgræn ˈdæmz, ˈdeɪmz; French grɑ̃d ˈdam/ (Show IPA)
1.
a usually elderly woman of dignified or aristocratic bearing.
2.
a woman who is the doyenne of a specific field:
a grande dame of the American theater.
Origin
1735-1745
1735-45; < French: literally, great lady
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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British Dictionary definitions for grande-dame

grande dame

/ɡrɑ̃d dam/
noun
1.
a woman regarded as the most experienced, prominent, or venerable member of her profession, etc: the grande dame of fashion
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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