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janitor

[jan-i-ter] /ˈdʒæn ɪ tər/
noun
1.
a person employed in an apartment house, office building, school, etc., to clean the public areas, remove garbage, and do minor repairs; caretaker.
2.
Archaic. a doorkeeper or porter.
verb (used without object)
3.
to be employed as a janitor.
Origin of janitor
1575-1585
1575-85; < Latin jānitor doorkeeper, equivalent to jāni- (combining form of jānus doorway, covered passage) + -tor -tor
Related forms
janitorial
[jan-i-tawr-ee-uh l, -tohr-] /ˌdʒæn ɪˈtɔr i əl, -ˈtoʊr-/ (Show IPA),
adjective
underjanitor, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for janitorial
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • Besides, I was ignorant then of janitorial tyranny as the accepted code.

    The Van Dwellers Albert Bigelow Paine
  • Were they in some kind of a janitorial uniform so that you could tell that they were employees?

    Warren Commission (12 of 26): Hearings Vol. XII (of 15) The President's Commission on the Assassination of President Kennedy
  • We had not awakened as yet to the fulness of janitorial tyranny and power.

    The Van Dwellers Albert Bigelow Paine
British Dictionary definitions for janitorial

janitor

/ˈdʒænɪtə/
noun
1.
(Scot & US, Canadian) the caretaker of a building, esp a school
2.
(mainly US & Canadian) a person employed to clean and maintain a building, esp the public areas in a block of flats or office building; porter
Derived Forms
janitorial (ˌdʒænɪˈtɔːrɪəl) adjective
janitress, noun:feminine
Word Origin
C17: from Latin: doorkeeper, from jānua door, entrance, from jānus covered way (compare Janus1); related to Latin īre to go
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 janitorial
adj.

1869, from janitor + -ial.

janitor

n.

1580s, "an usher in a school," later "doorkeeper" (1620s), from Latin ianitor "doorkeeper, porter," from ianua "door, entrance, gate," from ianus "arched passageway, arcade" (see Janus) + agent suffix -tor. Meaning "caretaker of a building" first recorded 1708.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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