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[meyd] /meɪd/
a female servant.
a girl or young unmarried woman.
Archaic. a virgin.
Origin of maid
1150-1200; Middle English; apocopated variant of maiden
Related forms
maidish, adjective
maidishness, noun
submaid, noun
undermaid, noun
Can be confused
made, maid. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for maid
  • The kitchen and maid's bedroom have been reconfigured.
  • She had her own maid, the perfect room, and everything she desired.
  • She gets so tired of it, she wishes that her family could hire a maid to clean up for a change.
  • Another maid stood behind my chair, leaning over the table and waving a fan back and forth to drive off any flies.
  • She read the note the maid had left, lighting burners and turning dials accordingly.
  • Her hostess was a busy, unbeautiful old maid, sister and housekeeper of the village physician.
  • But differences in financial status are not all that drives the maid trade.
  • After an appeal to these saints cured an ill maid at a nearby monastery, construction began.
  • But, being the former maid's quarters, it had its own bathroom.
  • One morning her maid caught her, and the whole household was agog.
British Dictionary definitions for maid


(archaic or literary) a young unmarried girl; maiden
  1. a female servant
  2. (in combination): a housemaid
a spinster
Derived Forms
maidish, adjective
maidishness, noun
Word Origin
C12: shortened form of maiden
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 maid

late 12c., "a virgin, a young unmarried woman," shortening of maiden (n.). Like that word, used in Middle English of unmarried men as well as women (cf. maiden-man, c.1200, used of both sexes, reflecting also the generic use of man). Domestic help sense is from c.1300. In reference to Joan of Arc, attested from 1540s (cf. French la Pucelle). Maid Marian, one of Robin Hood's companions, first recorded 1520s, perhaps from French, where Robin et Marian have been stock names for country lovers since 13c. Maid of Honor (1580s) originally was "unmarried lady of noble birth who attends a queen or princess;" meaning "principal bridesmaid" is attested from 1895. Maydelond (translating Latin terra feminarum) was "the land of the Amazons."

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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