[ mur-der-er ]
/ ˈmɜr dər ər /


a person who commits murder.


    murderers' row,
    1. the row of cells in a prison where murderers and other violent or hard-core criminals are held.See also death row.
    2. Baseball. a succession of heavy hitters scheduled to bat one after the other.
    3. any group of notorious or important people: a murderers' row of talent; a murderers' row of philosophers.

Origin of murderer

1300–50; Middle English mortherer, mord(e)rer; see murder, -er1
Related formsself-mur·der·er, noun Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for murderer

Word Origin and History for murderer



mid-14c., alteration of murtherer (c.1300), agent noun from murder (v.); in part from Old French mordrere, from Medieval Latin murdrarius, from Germanic. Old English words for this included morðorcwalu, morðorslaga, morðorwyrhta, literally "murder-wright." The original murderer's row was in New York City's Tombs prison; figurative use in baseball dates to 1858, though the quintessential one was the 1927 New York Yankees. Fem. form murderess attested from late 14c. Murderee (1920) never caught on.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper