henchman

[ hench-muhn ]
/ ˈhɛntʃ mən /

noun, plural hench·men.

an unscrupulous and ruthless subordinate, especially a criminal: The leader of the gang went everywhere accompanied by his henchmen.
an unscrupulous supporter or adherent of a political figure or cause, especially one motivated by the hope of personal gain: Hitler and his henchmen.
a trusted attendant, supporter, or follower.
Obsolete. a squire or page.

Origin of henchman

1325–75; Middle English henchman, henshman, henksman, hengestman, Old English hengest stallion (cognate with German Hengst) + man man1

Related forms

hench·man·ship, noun
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British Dictionary definitions for henchman

henchman

/ (ˈhɛntʃmən) /

noun plural -men

a faithful attendant or supporter
archaic a squire; page

Word Origin for henchman

C14: hengestman, from Old English hengest stallion + man; related to Old Norse hestr horse, Old High German hengist gelding
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