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From Middle English lady, laddy, lafdi, lavedi, from Old English hl?fd??e (“mistress of a household, wife of a lord, lady”, literally “bread-kneader”), from hl?f (“bread, loaf”) + d??e (“kneader”), related to Old English d??e (“maker of dough”). Compare also lord. More at loaf, dairy, dough.
lady (plural ladies)
- (historical) The mistress of a household.
- A woman of breeding or higher class, a woman of authority.
- The feminine of lord.
- A title for someone married to a lord or gentleman.
- A title that can be used instead of the formal terms of marchioness, countess, viscountess, or baroness.
- (polite or used by children) A woman: an adult female human.
- (in the plural) A polite reference or form of address to women.
- (slang) Used to address a female.
- (ladies' or ladies) Toilets intended for use by women.
- (familiar) A wife or girlfriend; a sweetheart.
- A woman to whom the particular homage of a knight was paid; a woman to whom one is devoted or bound.
- (slang) A queen (the playing card).
- (attributive, with a professional title) Who is a woman.
- (Wicca) Alternative form of Lady.
- The triturating apparatus in the stomach of a lobster, consisting of calcareous plates; so called from a fancied resemblance to a seated female figure.
- (Britain, slang) A five-pound note. (Rhyming slang, Lady Godiva for fiver.)
- (slang) A woman’s breast.