Try Our Apps


90s Slang You Should Know


[mid-l-man] /ˈmɪd lˌmæn/
noun, plural middlemen.
a person who plays an economic role intermediate between producer and retailer or consumer.
a person who acts as an intermediary.
Origin of middleman
1400-50; late Middle English: maker of girdles; see middle, man1 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
Cite This Source
Examples from the Web for middleman
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • It is unnecessary to say that he was grieved at the painful consequences of the middleman system, and of sub-letting in general.

  • Nor let us forget the middleman, who levies the lion's share of the earth's produce.

    The Conquest of Bread Peter Kropotkin
  • When we finally eliminate combinations in restraint of trade, the middleman abuses may be in the process of passing out.

  • I'm not the principal party in the transaction—I'm only the middleman.

    The Making of a Soul Kathlyn Rhodes
  • He is a provider of natural produce, manufacturer, middleman and consumer, all in one.

    The Forest Farm Peter Rosegger
British Dictionary definitions for middleman


noun (pl) -men
an independent trader engaged in the distribution of goods from producer to consumer
an intermediary
(theatre) the interlocutor in minstrel shows
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
Cite This Source
Word Origin and History for middleman

in the trading sense, 1795, from middle + man. From mid-15c. as the name of some type of workman in wire-making. From 1741 as "one who takes a middle course."

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source

Word of the Day

Difficulty index for middleman

Some English speakers likely know this word

Word Value for middleman

Scrabble Words With Friends

Nearby words for middleman