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mastermind

[mas-ter-mahynd, mah-ster-] /ˈmæs tərˌmaɪnd, ˈmɑ stər-/
verb (used with object)
1.
to plan and direct (a usually complex project or activity), especially skillfully:
Two colonels had masterminded the revolt.
noun
2.
a person who originates or is primarily responsible for the execution of a particular idea, project, or the like:
the masterminds of company policy.
Origin
1710-1720
1710-20; master + mind
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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British Dictionary definitions for master-mind

mastermind

/ˈmɑːstəˌmaɪnd/
verb
1.
(transitive) to plan and direct (a complex undertaking): he masterminded the robbery
noun
2.
a person of great intelligence or executive talent, esp one who directs an undertaking
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 master-mind

mastermind

n.

1720, "an outstanding intellect," from master (n.) + mind (n.). Meaning "head of a criminal enterprise" is first attested 1872. As a verb from 1940. Related: Masterminded; masterminding.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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