View synonyms for right-hand man

right-hand man


  1. an indispensable or invaluable assistant; right hand.

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Word History and Origins

Origin of right-hand man1

First recorded in 1655–65

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Idioms and Phrases

Also, right-hand woman . A trusted helper, as in Give it to Jill, she's my right-hand man . Based on the idea that in most people the right hand is the stronger of the two, this idiom today usually disregards gender, as in the example. However, in the the 17th and 18th centuries it also meant a soldier in a post of command on the right side of a cavalry unit, and then always denoted a man. [c. 1800]

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Example Sentences

The year Greenberg took office, Ellicott became his right-hand man as the “assistant deputy tax collector” for Seminole County.

Reid Cashman left the organization to coach at Dartmouth, so Laviolette was able to add his right-hand man in assistant coach Kevin McCarthy with little disruption.

Cordier was best-known as the personal secretary and right-hand man of legendary resistance leader Jean Moulin, who had served as first president of the National Council of the Resistance.

The right-hand man of Abu Bakr Al-Baghdadi was killed by an airstrike in Mosul.

As Schaeffer grew more strident and political, his son was his right-hand man.

Brian Lewis Lewis was the right-hand man of Fox News chief Roger Ailes before he was fired last month in spectacular fashion.

Harry's right-hand man Jamie Lowther-Pinkerton got him a glass of water.

Paddy, a Towson junior from Baltimore, is his right-hand man.

Why not give up the sea, remain here, and be my trusted friend and right-hand man in the management of the estate?

Two of the warders were agents of Prendergast, and the second mate was his right-hand man.

She also makes the mayonnaise and helps me here in the kitchen when I need her, but Gwen is my right hand man.

But the captain liked me also very much, and I was entirely his right-hand man.

Why, my girl, that clock was my right hand man and my adviser.


Definitions and idiom definitions from Unabridged, based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

Idioms from The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.




right-handerright-hand rule