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[muh-hout] /məˈhaʊt/
the keeper or driver of an elephant, especially in India and the East Indies.
Origin of mahout
1655-65; < Hindi mahāut, variant of mahāvat; compare Prakrit mahāmatta, Sanskrit mahāmatra elephant driver Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for mahout
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • At any rate, it worked and the mahout threw a handful of coins to him.

    Caves of Terror Talbot Mundy
  • No; I think—yes, it is the mahout who rode into camp at the review.

    Trapped by Malays George Manville Fenn
  • This was seen to be fair and the mahout had to get off; then the fight began.

    Folklore of the Santal Parganas Cecil Henry Bompas
  • "The only problem to be solved, then, is where to find a mahout," he said in conclusion.

    Her Ladyship's Elephant David Dwight Wells
  • Then the mahout, weak as he was, helped them off, and set about washing the dark red stains away.

  • Take him under the trees, mahout, and see that he gets his spices.

    Soldiers Three Rudyard Kipling
  • The mahout is the fellow that sits on the elephant's neck and conducts him.

    Across India Oliver Optic
  • The mahout who stood at his head now mounted in an extraordinary manner.

    From Egypt to Japan Henry M. Field
  • When we reached the ghat or ferry, I ordered Geerdharee Jha's mahout to cross with his elephant.

British Dictionary definitions for mahout


(in India and the East Indies) an elephant driver or keeper
Word Origin
C17: Hindi mahāut, from Sanskrit mahāmātra of great measure, originally a title
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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