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[wid-oh-er] /ˈwɪd oʊ ər/
a man who has lost his spouse by death and has not remarried.
Origin of widower
late Middle English
1325-75; late Middle English (see widow, -er1); replacing widow (now dial.), Old English wydewa
Related forms
widowered, adjective
widowerhood, noun
Can be confused
widow, widower. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for widower
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • Like my father, he was a widower: he had one child, the almost infant Juliet, who was left under my father's guardianship.

  • There were none but Mr Lestrange—who was a widower—and Nell; and where was she?

    Through Veld and Forest Harry Collingwood
  • Mr. Williamson was forty and a widower; but he drove an elegant pair of bays, belonged to a club, and had apartments at a hotel.

    A Little Girl of Long Ago Amanda Millie Douglas
  • Or it may have been some bachelor or widower who had come a-wooing.

    The Foot-path Way Bradford Torrey
  • I'm a widower man, so there'll be nobody to coax it out of me.

    Keziah Coffin Joseph C. Lincoln
  • He was a perfect gentleman, and a widower himself, so he could feel for her.

    "Some Say" Laura Elizabeth Howe Richards
British Dictionary definitions for widower


a man whose wife has died and who has not remarried
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 widower

mid-14c., extended from widow. The Old English masc. form was widewa.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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