Idioms about wife
Origin of wife
OTHER WORDS FROM wifewifedom, nounwifeless, adjectivewife·less·ness, noun
Other definitions for wife (2 of 2)
WORDS THAT USE -WIFE
What does -wife mean?
The combining form -wife is used like a suffix to mean “wife” or, more generally, “woman.” It’s used in a variety of terms, especially in reference to professions, but it’s relatively uncommon except for in a few words.
The form -wife comes from Old English wīf, meaning “woman.” Wīf was eventually combined with mann, which was then a gender-neutral term for an adult person, to create wīfmann, the source of the modern word woman. Want to know more? Check out our Words That Use entry for -woman.
What are variants of -wife?
Just as the word wives is used as a plural form of the word wife, the ending -wives is often used as a plural form of -wife, as in midwives.
Examples of -wife
One of the most common and well-known words that uses -wife is midwife, “a person trained to assist in childbirth.” Midwife comes from Middle English midwif, which uses the equivalent form of -wife.
The form mid- here means “with, accompanying,” from Old English mid-. As we have seen, -wife means “woman.” The word elements of midwife literally translate to “accompanying woman,” but men also work as midwives, and they are also commonly referred to as midwives.
The word housewife has largely fallen out of general use (other than in the titles of some TV shows) due to a history of sometimes being used in a way considered demeaning.
What are some words that use the combining form -wife?
MORE ABOUT WIFE
What is a basic definition of wife?
A wife is a married woman.
The word wife is often used when a woman’s marital status is important to the current topic. For example, a man might explain to a salesperson that he is looking for a present for his wife, which is a lot more helpful than saying he is buying a gift for “a woman.”
- Real-life examples: Queen Isabella I of Castille was the wife of King Ferdinand II of Aragon. King Henry VIII infamously had six wives (but one at a time!). If you are married to a woman, then she is your wife.
- Used in a sentence: My uncle has never been married and says he has no interest in finding a wife.
Sometimes, a modifier is used with wife to be more specific about a woman’s marital partner.
- Used in a sentence: The documentary explored the lives of prison wives.
Some married people prefer gender-neutral terms, such as spouse or partner. The choice is up to the people in the marriage.
Where does wife come from?
The first records of wife come from before the 900s. It comes from the Old English word wīf, meaning “woman.” It is related to the Dutch wijf, the German Weib, and the Old Norse vīf.
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What are some other forms related to wife?
What are some synonyms for wife?
What are some words that share a root or word element with wife?
What are some words that often get used in discussing wife?
How is wife used in real life?
Wife is a very common word used to explain a woman’s relationship to her spouse.
My wife is the Person of the Year.
— Craig Spencer MD MPH (@Craig_A_Spencer) December 12, 2020
Former Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson has teed up a trip to the Oscars as a Christmas gift for his wife Cathy.
— Bolarinwa Olajide (@iambolar) December 27, 2013
A man near and dear to me and many others has lost his wife in a battle with cancer. My prayers are with you Coach Jackson
— Robert Griffin III (@RGIII) July 3, 2013
Try using wife!
True or False?
The word wife is used to refer to a woman who is not married.
How to use wife in a sentence
In straight relationships with an age gap, words like ‘gold-digger’ and ‘trophy wife’ get thrown around.Freaking Out About Age Gaps in Gay Relationships Is Homophobic|Samantha Allen|January 9, 2015|DAILY BEAST
His wife passed away and they had kids, and he wanted to focus on being a dad so he just stopped to raise his kids.Coffee Talk with Fred Armisen: On ‘Portlandia,’ Meeting Obama, and Taylor Swift’s Greatness|Marlow Stern|January 7, 2015|DAILY BEAST
The band was still on its way back as De Blasio and his wife departed.
Except for maybe his brainiac wife… but she could do better anyway.All Your Internet Boyfriends Are Taken: Gosling, Cumberbatch, and now Joseph Gordon-Levitt|Melissa Leon|January 3, 2015|DAILY BEAST
So when my wife and I moved to Laurel Canyon I spent my first year working night and day on the show.The Story Behind Lee Marvin’s Liberty Valance Smile|Robert Ward|January 3, 2015|DAILY BEAST
But Mrs. Dodd, the present vicar's wife, retained the precious prerogative of choosing the book to be read at the monthly Dorcas.The Pit Town Coronet, Volume I (of 3)|Charles James Wills
And that was that if he and his wife were to ever live together again and be happy, the family were to be kept out of it.The Homesteader|Oscar Micheaux
His wife stood smiling and waving, the boys shouting, as he disappeared in the old rockaway down the sandy road.The Awakening and Selected Short Stories|Kate Chopin
To Harrison and his wife there was no distinction between the executive and judicial branches of the law.The Bondboy|George W. (George Washington) Ogden
The Authorised Version has: “And as a mother shall she meet him, and receive him as a wife married of a virgin.”Solomon and Solomonic Literature|Moncure Daniel Conway
British Dictionary definitions for wife
Derived forms of wife
Word Origin for wife
Other Idioms and Phrases with wife
see under wives.