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2017 Word of the Year

handmaid

or handmaiden

[hand-meyd or hand-meyd-n] /ˈhændˌmeɪd or ˈhændˌmeɪd n/
noun
1.
something that is necessarily subservient or subordinate to another:
Ceremony is but the handmaid of worship.
2.
a female servant or attendant.
Origin of handmaid
1350-1400
Middle English word dating back to 1350-1400; See origin at hand, maid
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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British Dictionary definitions for handmaiden

handmaiden

/ˈhændˌmeɪdən/
noun
1.
a person or thing that serves a useful but subordinate purpose: logic is the handmaid of philosophy
2.
(archaic) a female servant or attendant
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 handmaiden

handmaid

n.

late 14c., from hand (n.) in the sense in close at hand + maid. Cf. Old English handþegn "personal attendant."

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Word Value for handmaiden

17
19
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