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90s Slang You Should Know


[ser-vey-er] /sərˈveɪ ər/
a person whose occupation is surveying.
an overseer or supervisor.
Chiefly British. a person who inspects something officially for the purpose of ascertaining condition, value, etc.
(formerly) a U.S. customs official responsible for ascertaining the quantity and value of imported merchandise.
(initial capital letter) U.S. Aerospace. one of a series of space probes (1966–68) that analyzed lunar soil and obtained other scientific information after soft-landing on the moon.
Origin of surveyor
late Middle English
1375-1425; late Middle English surveio(u)r < Anglo-French surveiour; Middle French surve(i)our, equivalent to surve(i)- (see survey) + -our -or2
Related forms
surveyorship, noun Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for surveyor
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • There we picked up a surveyor—an officer whose business it was to make maps for the army.

    War in the Garden of Eden Kermit Roosevelt
  • He, the clerk, cook and surveyor consult over their Lords dinner.

  • The surveyor would stop with a sort of bovine surprise, and break out in irritable parenthesis.

    The Moonshiners At Hoho-Hebee Falls Charles Egbert Craddock (AKA Mary Noailles Murfree)
  • The fee for the surveyor is small—only two dollars for each stake.

    The Clansman Thomas Dixon
  • The surveyor, who was seated beside the doctor, was a clever man in his profession, but little given to conversation.

    The Nameless Castle Maurus Jkai
  • The surveyor squatted in the field and carefully wrote the document.

    The Clansman Thomas Dixon
  • He saw that the surveyor, who had thus far kept in the background, was expostulating with the angry man.

  • No surveyor had ever happened along to give them their latitude and longitude.

    Lost Face Jack London
  • When the messenger returned, he reported that the model had come from the office of the surveyor of the Navy.

British Dictionary definitions for surveyor


a person whose occupation is to survey land or buildings See also quantity surveyor
(mainly Brit) a person concerned with the official inspection of something for purposes of measurement and valuation
a person who carries out surveys, esp of ships (marine surveyor) to determine seaworthiness, etc
a customs official
(archaic) a supervisor
Derived Forms
surveyorship, 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 surveyor

late 14c., from Anglo-French surveiour, from Middle French surveor, from Old French verb surveeir (see survey (v.)).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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