or déb·u·tante

[deb-yoo-tahnt, -tant]


a young woman making a debut into society.


Origin of debutante

1795–1805; < French; feminine of débutant debutant
Related formspost·deb·u·tante, noun, adjective Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for debutante

Contemporary Examples of debutante

  • Before his marriage to the Queen, Philip dated society beauty Osla Benning, a Canadian debutante, whom he met in 1939.

    The Daily Beast logo
    Sex Lives of the New Royals

    Tom Sykes

    July 25, 2012

  • It was a typical Southern upbringing complete with not one, but two debutante balls.

    The Daily Beast logo
    The Lesbian Hugh Hefner

    Itay Hod

    December 18, 2010

  • At first glance, Finke, a debutante from Manhattan, is a rarity in this wicked pantheon of secret-sharers.

    The Daily Beast logo
    The Vipers of Tinseltown

    Lee Siegel

    July 18, 2009

  • She had been raised as a debutante, a beautiful, delicate orchid from Vancouver, Canada.

Historical Examples of debutante

British Dictionary definitions for debutante



a young woman of upper-class background who is presented to society, usually at a formal ball
a girl or young woman regarded as being upper-class, wealthy, and of a frivolous or snobbish social set

Word Origin for debutante

C19: from French, from débuter to lead off in a game, make one's first appearance; see debut
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

Word Origin and History for debutante

1801, "female stage actress making her first public performance," from fem. of French debutant (q.v.). In reference to a young woman making her first appearance in society, from 1817.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper