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[meyd] /meɪd/
a female servant.
a girl or young unmarried woman.
Archaic. a virgin.
Origin of maid
1150-1200; Middle English; apocopated variant of maiden
Related forms
maidish, adjective
maidishness, noun
submaid, noun
undermaid, noun
Can be confused
made, maid. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for maid
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • The face of the maid that served him had been no heaven for the souls of dead flowers.

    The Spenders Harry Leon Wilson
  • Why he neglected to include the way of a maid with a man is not at once apparent.

    The Spenders Harry Leon Wilson
  • Miss Briggs, the maid, sir—but she's just ready to go out, sir.

    The Spenders Harry Leon Wilson
  • While he was thus raging a knock came to the door, and a maid entered.

    Weighed and Wanting George MacDonald
  • He made hasty excuses and went out on the heels of the maid.

    Within the Law Marvin Dana
British Dictionary definitions for maid


(archaic or literary) a young unmarried girl; maiden
  1. a female servant
  2. (in combination): a housemaid
a spinster
Derived Forms
maidish, adjective
maidishness, noun
Word Origin
C12: shortened form of maiden
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 maid

late 12c., "a virgin, a young unmarried woman," shortening of maiden (n.). Like that word, used in Middle English of unmarried men as well as women (cf. maiden-man, c.1200, used of both sexes, reflecting also the generic use of man). Domestic help sense is from c.1300. In reference to Joan of Arc, attested from 1540s (cf. French la Pucelle). Maid Marian, one of Robin Hood's companions, first recorded 1520s, perhaps from French, where Robin et Marian have been stock names for country lovers since 13c. Maid of Honor (1580s) originally was "unmarried lady of noble birth who attends a queen or princess;" meaning "principal bridesmaid" is attested from 1895. Maydelond (translating Latin terra feminarum) was "the land of the Amazons."

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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