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handmaid

[hand-meyd] /ˈhændˌmeɪd/
noun
1.
something that is necessarily subservient or subordinate to another:
Ceremony is but the handmaid of worship.
2.
a female servant or attendant.
Also, handmaiden.
Origin
1350-1400
1350-1400; Middle English; see hand, maid
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Examples from the web for handmaid
  • Let flattery, the handmaid of vice, be far removed from friendship.
  • The little handmaid bubbled over with will-ing talk.
British Dictionary definitions for handmaid

handmaiden

/ˈhændˌmeɪdən/
noun
1.
a person or thing that serves a useful but subordinate purpose: logic is the handmaid of philosophy
2.
(archaic) a female servant or attendant
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 handmaid
n.

late 14c., from hand (n.) in the sense in close at hand + maid. Cf. Old English handþegn "personal attendant."

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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handmaid in the Bible

servant (Gen. 16:1; Ruth 3:9; Luke 1:48). It is probable that Hagar was Sarah's personal attendant while she was in the house of Pharaoh, and was among those maid-servants whom Abram had brought from Egypt.

Easton's 1897 Bible Dictionary
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15
16
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