[ sur-voh ]
/ ˈsɜr voʊ /


acting as part of a servomechanism: servo amplifier.
pertaining to or having to do with servomechanisms: servo engineer.
noting the action of certain mechanisms, as brakes, that are set in operation by other mechanisms but which themselves augment the force of that action by the way in which they operate.

noun, plural ser·vos.

Informal. servomechanism.

verb (used with object), ser·voed, ser·vo·ing.

to connect (a mechanism) to another as a servomechanism.

Nearby words

  1. servite,
  2. servitor,
  3. servitude,
  4. servius tullius,
  5. servlet,
  6. servo system,
  7. servo-,
  8. servocontrol,
  9. servomechanism,
  10. servomotor

Origin of servo

1945–50; independent use of servo-, taken as an adj., or shortening of words formed with it


a combining form used in the names of devices or operations that employ a servomechanism: servocontrol.

Origin of servo-

extracted from servomotor Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for servo

British Dictionary definitions for servo


/ (ˈsɜːvəʊ) /


(prenominal) of, relating to, forming part of, or activated by a servomechanismservo brakes

noun plural -vos

informal short for servomechanism

Word Origin for servo

see servomotor

noun plural -vos

Australian informal a service station
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 servo


1910, from servo-motor (1889), from French servo-moteur (1873), ultimately from Latin servus "slave" (see serve (v.)) + motor "mover" (see motor (n.)).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper