[ mey-er, mair ]
/ ˈmeɪ ər, mɛər /


the chief executive official, usually elected, of a city, village, or town.
the chief magistrate of a city or borough.

Origin of mayor

1250–1300; < Medieval Latin major major; replacing Middle English mer, mair < Old French maire
Related formsmay·or·al, adjectivemay·or·ship, noun
Can be confusedmare mayor Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for mayor

British Dictionary definitions for mayor


/ (mɛə) /


the chairman and civic head of a municipal corporation in many countriesScottish equivalent: provost
Derived Formsmayoral, adjectivemayorship, noun

Word Origin for mayor

C13: from Old French maire, from Latin maior greater. See major
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 mayor



c.1300, from Old French maire "head of a city or town government" (13c.), originally "greater, superior" (adj.), from Latin maior, major, comparative of magnus "great" (see magnum).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper