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housekeeping

[hous-kee-ping]
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noun
  1. the maintenance of a house or domestic establishment.
  2. the management of household affairs.
  3. the management, care, and servicing of property and equipment of an industrial or commercial building or organization.
  4. the ongoing routine, procedures, operations, and management of a commercial enterprise, government, organization, or the like.
  5. Computers. system tasks, as initialization and managing peripheral devices, that must be done to permit a computer program to execute properly but that do not directly contribute to program output.
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Origin of housekeeping

First recorded in 1530–40; house + keeping

housekeep

[hous-keep]
verb (used without object), house·kept, house·keep·ing.
  1. to keep or maintain a house.
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Origin of housekeep

First recorded in 1835–45; back formation from housekeeping
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for housekeeping

Contemporary Examples

Historical Examples

  • This caretaker was a man, but with all the housekeeping ability of a woman.

  • That's not good for housekeeping; it's foolish waste of time.

  • "The housekeeping is enough," she answered, with her tranquil smile.

    Questionable Shapes

    William Dean Howells

  • Her housekeeping capacity was not large enough to comprehend them.

    Barnaby Rudge

    Charles Dickens

  • Money had long since been saved to set them up in housekeeping.

    L'Assommoir

    Emile Zola


British Dictionary definitions for housekeeping

housekeeping

noun
  1. the running of a household
  2. money allocated for the running of a household
  3. organization and tidiness in general, as of an office, shop, etc
  4. the general maintenance of a computer storage system, including removal of obsolete files, documentation, security copying, etc
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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 housekeeping

n.

1540s, from house (n.) + present participle of keep (v.).

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper