1845, French, literally "suffer sorrow;" one who is in a subservient position and must listen to or share another's troubles, specifically "a woman who acts as a paid companion to an older woman."

Nearby words

  1. soudan,
  2. souffle,
  3. soufflot,
  4. soufflot, jacques germain,
  5. soufflé,
  6. soufrière,
  7. sough,
  8. sought,
  9. sought after,
  10. sought-after

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

Examples from the Web for souffre-douleur

  • Youre only too willing to offer yourself as a souffre-douleur on all occasions.

    The Dull Miss Archinard|Anne Douglas Sedgwick