- a woman who holds some title or property from her deceased husband, especially the widow of a king, duke, etc. (often used as an additional title to differentiate her from the wife of the present king, duke, etc.): a queen dowager; an empress dowager.
- an elderly woman of stately dignity, especially one of elevated social position: a wealthy dowager.
- noting, pertaining to, or characteristic of a dowager: the dowager duchess; to prefer a dowager style of dress.
Origin of dowager
Examples from the Web for dowager
When I tell her that Clooney is rumored to also kiss the Dowager Countess during the episode, she chuckles.Elizabeth McGovern on the ‘Downton Abbey’ Xmas Album and Lady Grantham’s Kiss with George Clooney
November 13, 2014
Vacations are as mysterious to me as weekends are to the Dowager Countess of Grantham.One First-Timer’s Adventures in Culebra and Puerto Rico
March 14, 2013
He called up his mother, the dowager countess, and asked her to come over and look after the children.Lord Lucan’s Whereabouts: The Tabloid Rebirth of a Decades-Old Crime
February 25, 2012
She went from dominatrix to dowager, swapping her D & Gs for sensible brogues, her sexy leather and lace for tweeds and twin sets.Why Madge Got Bored
October 15, 2008
I promise you I will,' said the dowager—'here, take the rod!'Camps, Quarters and Casual Places
The two countesses had no outlines at all, and the dowager's was a demd outline.The Life And Adventures Of Nicholas Nickleby
The Dowager and "my daughter" left that dinner table trembling all over.
Milo and Eddie, backed by the Dowager and the Duchess, done the real fishing.
"I dote on 'em," comes back the Dowager, and "my daughter" owned up that she "adored" 'em.
- a widow possessing property or a title obtained from her husband
- (as modifier)the dowager duchess
- a wealthy or dignified elderly woman
Word Origin and History for dowager
1520s, from Middle French douagere "widow with a dower" literally "pertaining to a dower," from douage "dower," from douer "endow," from Latin dotare, from dos (genitive dotis) "dowry" (see dowry).