One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
A female administrator; an administratrix.
Late 15th century; earliest use found in William Caxton (1415x24–1492), printer, merchant, and diplomat. Originally from Middle French administresse (1400; alteration (by dissimilation) of administreresse, feminine form corresponding to of administreur: see -esse). In later use probably re-formed from administer + -ess: see -tress. Compare earlier administratrice.
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