One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
1The administrator of an opera house or theatre.
- ‘Strauss devised his music for Enoch Arden to strengthen his Munich position with Ernst von Possart, intendant of the Court Theatre.’
- ‘In his memoirs, Drummond took McMaster to task for not making more of an impact with opera, given that he is ‘one of the most gifted opera intendants of our time’.’
- ‘Soon all but two of the East German theatre intendants will be gone, and only West German intendants will remain.’
- ‘The current intendant, Sir Peter Jonas, was originally to be replaced by Christoph Albrecht.’
- ‘Peter Ruzicka, the new intendant of the festival, threatens to revive it for 2006, the 250th anniversary of Mozart's birth.’
2historical A title given to a high-ranking official or administrator, especially in France, Spain, Portugal, or one of their colonies.
- ‘Joseph established a uniform central administration modelled on France, and divided his kingdom into 14 provinces, run by intendants.’
- ‘Moreover despite official regulations stipulating that intendants should not spend more than three years in one generality, or be sent to their own regions, these rules were regularly flouted.’
- ‘To centralize the administration, an intendant was put in charge of each province, and in 1717 the executive bureaus of the government were reorganized.’
- ‘Colonies were under the control of governors and officials called intendants without the interference of representative bodies.’
Mid 17th century: from French, from Latin intendere ‘to direct’ (see intend).
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