follow Dictionary.com

Denotation vs. Connotation

madame

[muh-dam, -dahm, ma-; mad-uh m; French ma-dam] /məˈdæm, -ˈdɑm, mæ-; ˈmæd əm; French maˈdam/
noun, plural mesdames
[mey-dam, -dahm; French mey-dam] /meɪˈdæm, -ˈdɑm; French meɪˈdam/ (Show IPA).
(often initial capital letter)
1.
a French title of respect equivalent to “Mrs.”, used alone or prefixed to a woman's married name or title:
Madame Curie.
2.
(in English) a title of respect used in speaking to or of an older woman, especially one of distinction, who is not of American or British origin.
Abbreviation: Mme.
Origin of madame
1590-1600
1590-1600; < French; see madam
Can be confused
madam, madame.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
Cite This Source
Examples from the Web for madame
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • madame Gigi simply shrugged her shoulders, and opened her eyes.

    Is He Popenjoy? Anthony Trollope
  • How much better the diagnosis of madame Dacier, who is quoted by Lessing!

    The Dramatic Values in Plautus Wilton Wallace Blancke
  • Monseigneur was ruffled, distinctly so, and madame was on the verge of tears.

  • An hour later, Hubert was walking round the house where madame Sidonie lived.

    The Dream Emile Zola
  • It is because I am happy; madame Dammauville wishes to consult you.

    Conscience, Complete Hector Malot
British Dictionary definitions for madame

madame

/ˈmædəm; French madam/
noun (pl) mesdames (ˈmeɪˌdæm; French) (medam)
1.
a married Frenchwoman: usually used as a title equivalent to Mrs, and sometimes extended to older unmarried women to show respect and to women of other nationalities
Word Origin
C17: from French. See madam
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
Cite This Source
Word Origin and History for madame

1590s, see madam, which is an earlier borrowing of the same French phrase. Originally a title of respect for a woman of rank, now given to any married woman. OED recommends madam as an English title, madame in reference to foreign women.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source

Word of the Day

Difficulty index for madame

Some English speakers likely know this word

Word Value for madame

11
13
Scrabble Words With Friends