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[mey-er, mair] /ˈmeɪ ər, mɛər/
the chief executive official, usually elected, of a city, village, or town.
the chief magistrate of a city or borough.
1250-1300; < Medieval Latin major major; replacing Middle English mer, mair < Old French maire
Related forms
mayoral, adjective
mayorship, noun
Can be confused
mare, mayor. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Examples from the web for mayor
  • And today they received the grateful thanks of the modern city's mayor.
  • The mayor of the tidy nearby town brought out souvenir bottles of schnapps.
  • Oh, and to make it work, you need a mayor who isn't elected.
  • For weeks now, the two major candidates for mayor here have been offering competing portrayals of themselves as reformers.
  • Instead, please restrict your answers to policies she implemented and positions she took as governor and as mayor.
  • Yet the mayor now faces criminal proceedings-presumably because that is the only way to block his candidacy.
  • But since you the party leader agreed to it anyway, the mayor had a pre-recorded, positive response.
  • For his part, the mayor says asphalt pavements are more expensive to maintain than brick.
  • It could also let a nosy citizen with enough cash find out if the mayor is having an affair, he says.
  • They drank beer and vodka, and the mayor awarded medals to the previous season's best fishermen.
British Dictionary definitions for mayor


the chairman and civic head of a municipal corporation in many countries Scottish equivalent provost
Derived Forms
mayoral, adjective
mayorship, noun
Word Origin
C13: from Old French maire, from Latin maior greater. See major
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 mayor

c.1300, from Old French maire "head of a city or town government" (13c.), originally "greater, superior" (adj.), from Latin maior, major, comparative of magnus "great" (see magnum).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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