[pey-truh n]
See more synonyms for patron on
  1. a person who is a customer, client, or paying guest, especially a regular one, of a store, hotel, or the like.
  2. a person who supports with money, gifts, efforts, or endorsement an artist, writer, museum, cause, charity, institution, special event, or the like: a patron of the arts; patrons of the annual Democratic dance.
  3. a person whose support or protection is solicited or acknowledged by the dedication of a book or other work.
  4. patron saint.
  5. Roman History. the protector of a dependent or client, often the former master of a freedman still retaining certain rights over him.
  6. Ecclesiastical. a person who has the right of presenting a member of the clergy to a benefice.

Origin of patron

1250–1300; Middle English < Medieval Latin, Latin patrōnus legal protector, advocate (Medieval Latin: lord, master), derivative of pater father. See pattern
Related formspa·tron·al, pa·tron·ly, adjectivepa·tron·dom, pa·tron·ship, nounpa·tron·less, adjectivesub·pa·tron·al, adjective


noun, plural pa·tron·es [pah-traw-nes] /pɑˈtrɔ nɛs/. Spanish.
  1. (in Mexico and the southwestern U.S.) a boss; employer. Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for patron

Contemporary Examples of patron

Historical Examples of patron

  • But the patron is a friend of mine; he will do his very best for you after what I have written.'

    The Roof of France

    Matilda Betham-Edwards

  • Napoleon was neither boy nor man, patron, king, nor pope; he was Napoleon!

  • I began to thank my patron saint that the Snake River was crossed.

    A Woman Tenderfoot

    Grace Gallatin Seton-Thompson

  • "It's but what might have been looked for," he said, lightly, in answer to some sad words of my patron's.

    In the Valley

    Harold Frederic

  • Each of his men had, as usual, a patron saint according to his name or taste.

    Maid Marian

    Thomas Love Peacock

British Dictionary definitions for patron


  1. a person, esp a man, who sponsors or aids artists, charities, etc; protector or benefactor
  2. a customer of a shop, hotel, etc, esp a regular one
  3. See patron saint
  4. (in ancient Rome) the protector of a dependant or client, often the former master of a freedman still retaining certain rights over him
  5. Christianity a person or body having the right to present a clergyman to a benefice
Derived Formspatronal (pəˈtrəʊnəl), adjectivepatronly, adjective

Word Origin for patron

C14: via Old French from Latin patrōnus protector, from pater father


  1. a man, who owns or manages a hotel, restaurant, or bar


  1. Irish a variant spelling of pattern 2
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 patron

"a lord-master, a protector," c.1300, from Old French patron "patron, protector, patron saint" (12c.) and directly from Medieval Latin patronus "patron saint, bestower of a benefice, lord, master, model, pattern," from Latin patronus "defender, protector, former master (of a freed slave); advocate," from pater (genitive patris) "father" (see father (n.)). Meaning "one who advances the cause" (of an artist, institution, etc.), usually by the person's wealth and power, is attested from late 14c.; "commonly a wretch who supports with insolence, and is paid with flattery" [Johnson]. Commercial sense of "regular customer" first recorded c.1600. Patron saint (1717) originally was simply patron (late 14c.).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper