- (often initial capital letter) a polite term of address to a woman, originally used only to a woman of rank or authority: Madam President; May I help you, madam?
- the woman in charge of a household: Is the madam at home?
- the woman in charge of a house of prostitution.
Origin of madam
Examples from the Web for madams
This leaves workers dependent on pimps and madams for protection, which often leads to more violence.Why It's Time to Legalize Prostitution
August 15, 2014
Suddenly I had madams, girls, and FBI informants on the phone.The Complex Lives of Escorts
May 19, 2009
Legally speaking, madams, agency owners, and telephone bookers take on a more-serious risk than do most escorts.Should Call Girls Kiss and Tell?
March 9, 2009
What will be the price of the plaintiff's pleadings then, Madams?Baboo Jabberjee, B.A.
But there were other Madams and Mademoiselles boarding that train.The Magic Curtain
Roy J. Snell
He has his madams to play with, and to bring them back to happiness, and to those that love them.Dracula
These "madams" of the valet were beginning to fret Sophy cruelly.Shadows of Flames
"He is one of our national glories," Madams de S— cried out, with sudden vehemence.Under Western Eyes
- a polite term of address for a woman, esp one considered to be of relatively high social status
- a woman who runs a brothel
- British informal a precocious or pompous little girl
- the madam Southern African informal the lady of the house
Word Origin and History for madams
c.1300, from Old French ma dame, literally "my lady," from Latin mea domina (cf. madonna). Meaning "female owner or manager of a brothel" is first attested 1871.