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usher

[uhsh-er]
noun
  1. a person who escorts people to seats in a theater, church, etc.
  2. a person acting as an official doorkeeper, as in a courtroom or legislative chamber.
  3. a male attendant of a bridegroom at a wedding.
  4. an officer whose business it is to introduce strangers or to walk before a person of rank.
  5. British Archaic. a subordinate teacher or an assistant in a school.
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verb (used with object)
  1. to act as an usher to; lead, introduce, or conduct: She ushered them to their seats.
  2. to attend or bring at the coming or beginning; precede or herald (usually followed by in): to usher in the new theater season.
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verb (used without object)
  1. to act as an usher: He ushered at the banquet.
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Origin of usher

1350–1400; Middle English uscher doorkeeper < Anglo-French usser, Old French (h)uissier doorman, officer of justice < Vulgar Latin *ustiārius, equivalent to Latin ōsti(um) door + -ārius -ary; see -er2
Related formsush·er·ship, nounun·der·ush·er, nounun·ush·ered, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words

initiatesteerescortprecedeleaderconductorleadprecursorguideheraldattendantpagepilotdoorkeeperlaunchreceiveoriginatedirectintroduceinstitute

Examples from the Web for ushers

Contemporary Examples

Historical Examples

  • But it was merely the ushers opening a passage for the cortege.

  • If the ushers were to be believed, the discussion was likely to go on interminably.

    A Nest of Spies

    Pierre Souvestre

  • She will have to know me because Gay helped furnish her apartment and was one of her ushers.

    The Gorgeous Girl

    Nalbro Bartley

  • The bridegroom and the ushers, in that case, are all in full dress uniform.

  • The many young women, acting as ushers, were devoted to her and eager to serve her.


British Dictionary definitions for ushers

usher

noun
  1. an official who shows people to their seats, as in a church or theatre
  2. a person who acts as doorkeeper, esp in a court of law
  3. (in England) a minor official charged with maintaining order in a court of law
  4. an officer responsible for preceding persons of rank in a procession or introducing strangers at formal functions
  5. British obsolete a teacher
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verb (tr)
  1. to conduct or escort, esp in a courteous or obsequious way
  2. (usually foll by in) to be a precursor or herald (of)
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Word Origin

C14: from Old French huissier doorkeeper, from Vulgar Latin ustiārius (unattested), from Latin ostium door

Usher

noun
  1. a variant spelling of (James) Ussher
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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 ushers

usher

v.

"conduct, escort," 1590s, from usher (n.). Related: Ushered; ushering.

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usher

n.

late 14c., "servant who has charge of doors and admits people to a chamber, hall, etc.," from Anglo-French usser (12c.), from Old French ussier, from Vulgar Latin ustiarius "doorkeeper," from Latin ostiarius "door-keeper," from ostium "door, entrance," related to os "mouth." Fem. form usherette is attested from 1925.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper