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[boo k-mey-ker] /ˈbʊkˌmeɪ kər/
a person who makes a business of accepting the bets of others on the outcome of sports contests, especially of horse races.
a person who makes books.
Origin of bookmaker
late Middle English
First recorded in 1375-1425, bookmaker is from the late Middle English word bokmakere. See book, maker
Related forms
bookmaking, noun, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for bookmaker
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • Then aloud he repeated the question, touching the bookmaker on the elbow.

    Thoroughbreds W. A. Fraser
  • "You can't leave this large sum with the bookmaker," he objected.

    Thoroughbreds W. A. Fraser
  • "He's a bad boy," said the bookmaker, in a tone of mock condemnation.

    Thoroughbreds W. A. Fraser
  • Asked what his business was the applicant said he was a bookmaker.

  • I wish I had taken your advice at first, and thrown the bookmaker's letter on the fire.'

  • In the main path they met the turgid funeral of a Bow Road bookmaker.

    Tales of Mean Streets Arthur Morrison
  • "That there Yankee bookmaker gen'leman he's into it too," added Jeff.

    Back Home Irvin S. Cobb
  • Marriage is a race in which the bookmaker invariably bolts with the money.

    Sonia Between two Worlds Stephen McKenna
British Dictionary definitions for bookmaker


a person who as an occupation accepts bets, esp on horseraces, and pays out to winning betters
Derived Forms
bookmaking, noun
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 bookmaker

also book-maker, 1510s, "printer and binder of books," from book (n.) + agent noun from make (v.). The wagering sense is from 1862. Related: Book-making (late 15c., betting sense 1824).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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