[ doi-en, doi-uh n; French dwa-yan ]
/ dɔɪˈɛn, ˈdɔɪ ən; French dwaˈyɛ̃ /

noun, plural doy·ens [doi-enz, doi-enz; French dwa-yan] /dɔɪˈɛnz, ˈdɔɪ ɛnz; French dwaˈyɛ̃/.

the senior member, as in age, rank, or experience, of a group, class, profession, etc.

Origin of doyen

1665–75; < French; Old French deien < Latin decānus dean1 Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for doyen

British Dictionary definitions for doyen


/ (ˈdɔɪən, French dway) /


the senior member of a group, profession, or society

Derived Forms

doyenne (dɔɪˈɛn, French dwajɛn), fem n

Word Origin for doyen

C17: from French, from Late Latin decānus leader of a group of ten; see dean
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