• synonyms


[va-ley, val-it, val-ey]
  1. a male servant who attends to the personal needs of his male employer, as by taking care of clothing or the like; manservant.
  2. a man who is employed for cleaning and pressing, laundering, and similar services for patrons of a hotel, passengers on a ship, etc.
  3. an attendant who parks cars for patrons at a hotel, restaurant, etc.
  4. a stand or rack for holding coats, hats, etc.
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verb (used with or without object), val·et·ed, val·et·ing.
  1. to serve as a valet.
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Origin of valet

1560–70; < French; Middle French va(s)let squire, equivalent to vas- (< Medieval Latin vassus servant) + -let -let; see vassal
Related formsval·et·less, adjectiveun·val·et·ed, adjective
Can be confusedvalet valid
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for valeting

Historical Examples

  • There will be no valeting, and you will have undisputed charge of the pantry and wine-cellar.

    The Yellow Claw

    Sax Rohmer

  • Count Saxe had both, and did not like the business of valeting, even for kings.


    Molly Elliot Seawell

  • If I were you I should try to get something better than valeting.

    The Great Adventure

    Arnold Bennett

  • Hughes repudiated all idea of valeting, but was willing to accept the man as a comrade.

    Fifty-One Years of Victorian Life

    Margaret Elizabeth Leigh Child-Villiers, Countess of Jersey

  • Mishka turned up again, and insisted on valeting me after a fashion, though I told him I could manage perfectly well by myself.

    The Red Symbol

    John Ironside

British Dictionary definitions for valeting


  1. a manservant who acts as personal attendant to his employer, looking after his clothing, serving his meals, etcFrench name: valet de chambre
  2. a manservant who attends to the requirements of patrons in a hotel, passengers on board ship, etc; steward
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verb -ets, -eting or -eted
  1. to act as a valet for (a person)
  2. (tr) to clean the bodywork and interior of (a car) as a professional service
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Word Origin

C16: from Old French vaslet page, from Medieval Latin vassus servant; see vassal
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 valeting



"personal man-servant," mid-14c., from Old French valet, variant of vaslet "man's servant," originally "squire, young man," from Gallo-Romance *vassellittus "young nobleman, squire, page," diminutive of Medieval Latin vassallus, from vassus "servant" (see vassal). Modern sense is usually short for valet de chambre; the general sense of "male household servant of the meaner sort" going with the variant form varlet. First recorded use of valet parking is from 1960.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper