Definition of lord in English:



  • 1A man of noble rank or high office; a nobleman.

    ‘lords and ladies were entertained here’
    • ‘The noble lord had gone to bed drunk, woken up an hour later, still drunk, and had convinced himself that it was breakfast time.’
    • ‘There he established a committee of great lords and other nobles to co-ordinate counter-revolutionary activity.’
    • ‘In the past, noble lords and rich men - when they could get a licence from the Crown - built themselves a living larder in the shape of a deer park with high fences and walls.’
    • ‘Had Arthur considered the pain that he should cause his knights, lords, nobles, wife?’
    • ‘There are nearly 200 knights, lords, and their ladies milling about, conversing, boasting, laughing.’
    • ‘‘I'm sure the lords and the ladies will be there but we've got a lot of farmers, shepherds and engineers from here who are going too, working people,’ says Ann.’
    • ‘All three of them were dressed up, wearing clothing designed for lords and nobles.’
    • ‘Both these noble lords ruled that no politician or civil servant was to blame.’
    • ‘Stirrings of trouble have begun all over the land, in mines, on farms, in the houses of noble lords.’
    • ‘War was messy, and not a thing for delicate gentle lords and gentle ladies to discuss.’
    • ‘The banquet hall was bright and cheerful, full of nobles and lords looking dignified and regal.’
    • ‘In fact, those dancing ladies and leaping lords were the most expensive items on the list.’
    • ‘For centuries the House of Lords was made up of old aristocrats, those who were born lords or ladies.’
    • ‘When the ‘great fear’ erupted in many parts of France in 1789, the peasants who revolted made no distinction between noble and commoner lords.’
    • ‘I know that he, the two lords, and the lady live together as brothers and sister, but I know not their names.’
    • ‘The noble lord spends most of his time alone and prefers not to talk about the four-year sentence he received for perjury.’
    noble, nobleman, peer, aristocrat, patrician, grandee
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    1. 1.1Lord (in the UK) a title given formally to a baron, and less formally to a marquess, earl, or viscount (prefixed to a family or territorial name)
      ‘Lord Derby’
      • ‘Who, then, was this Lord Chesterfield, about whom all of this proverbial fuss has been made?’
      • ‘Lord Somerset is one of the most important and influential statesmen to have lived in the nineteenth century.’
      • ‘Lord Derby served as British Minister of War from 1916-18 during World War One.’
    2. 1.2the Lords (in the UK) the House of Lords, or its members collectively.
      • ‘This is a manifesto commitment and we will use the parliament act if the Lords object.’
      • ‘In the old days, the Lords was simply made up of individuals who happened to be born into the right family at the right time.’
      • ‘Those bishops who sit in the Lords do so, not as peers, but as lords of Parliament.’
      • ‘Expenses figures from Westminster show he has resumed a busy schedule in the Lords.’
      • ‘Television cameras are now part of daily life in the House of Commons and the Lords.’
      • ‘The legislation is likely to be blocked in the Lords at the time of the General Election, expected in May.’
      • ‘Thankfully action is now being taken - I just hope that it does not get delayed too badly in the Lords.’
      • ‘It remains to be seen whether the Government will push it through without the approval of the Lords.’
      • ‘He combined this post with being Deputy Leader of the Lords.’
      • ‘Blocked by the Lords, it was not passed as an ordinance for another four months.’
      • ‘The largely hereditary composition of the Lords has been modified by two pieces of legislation.’
      • ‘The Fireworks Bill was given its third reading in the Lords without debate.’
      • ‘Well, we'll see this week when the Lords throws out the measure to repeal Section 28.’
      • ‘The Electoral Reform Society welcomed the commitment to a free vote on the composition of the Lords.’
      • ‘By using the Act the Government can pass a bill into law without the Lords ' agreement after a year.’
      • ‘It was left to the other half of the legislature, the Lords, to take a stand.’
      • ‘There is support in the manifesto for a free vote of MPs on the make-up of the Lords.’
      • ‘The bill underwent its fourth day of scrutiny during the committee stage in the Lords on Monday.’
      • ‘Perhaps it would be best to skip the Commons and start on lobbying the Lords.’
      • ‘This would clear the way for it to go to the Lords before the end of the parliamentary session in the autumn.’
    3. 1.3Lord (in the UK) a courtesy title given to a younger son of a duke or marquess (prefixed to a Christian name)
      ‘Lord John Russell’
      • ‘Born premature and always small in stature, Lord John Russell served twice as prime minister.’
      • ‘Lord Edward Fitz Gerald (1763-98), fifth son of the duke of Leinster, inherited a legacy of active family rebellion against England in Tudor times.’
      • ‘The Duke's younger brother, Lord Edward Corinth, and journalist Verity Browne, set out to investigate.’
      • ‘Lord Edward bears a passing resemblance to Lord Peter but he is a year or two younger.’
    4. 1.4 Used in compound titles of other people of authority.
      ‘Lord High Executioner’
      • ‘It concerns our leading judges, including - also very directly - the Lord Chief Justice, and how the judiciary responds to political and media pressure.’
      • ‘The position of Lord High Steward of England, not to be confused with the Lord Steward, a court functionary, is the first of the Great Officers of State.’
      • ‘"Please, Lord High Executioner, I beg you don't do this. The Queen has never once confided her infidelities to me. I know nothing of this."’
    5. 1.5historical A feudal superior, especially the owner of a manor house.
      • ‘Merchants were allied to feudal lords who protected their interests.’
      • ‘Princes, clerics, and feudal lords often levied taxes, tithes, and rents as shares of certain crops.’
      • ‘In Scotland the role of the feudal lord was superimposed upon the more ancient status of chief of a clan or kindred.’
      • ‘Renters were squeezed by high rents in the decades before the Revolution, and many peasants found themselves facing lords who collected seigneurial dues with more rigour than ever.’
      • ‘The Anglo-Saxons used oaths not only to swear fealty to feudal lords, but also to ensure honesty during legal proceedings and transactions.’
    6. 1.6 A master or ruler.
      ‘our lord the king’
      • ‘Since most Fantasy stories have a medieval slant, this has resulted in a lot of wars between kings and lords and princes and demonic forces.’
      • ‘As Jesus poses the parable there are two masters and two lords to choose from.’
      • ‘Everyone who drew benefit from the estate was hoping that their new lord and master would not be a foreign absentee landlord, who turned up two or three times a year.’
      • ‘Anna is the melancholic woman of sorrows, completely dedicated to mourning the memory of her dead lord and master, while at the same time memorializing his life.’
      • ‘The old man paled and bowed quickly to his lord and master then rushed off to do the hateful task.’
      • ‘Led by Andy and Allan, those lords of Scottish panto, this cast perform the task of convincing the audience that they really are enjoying themselves.’
      • ‘My master, the great Scholar Li K'ai-men heard these words from his lord and master, His Majesty, the Emperor Kao.’
      • ‘The problem is, there are still big chunks of the country that are not secure, under the control of drug lords and warlords.’
      • ‘We were no longer prisoners, no longer slaves, but masters, lords of this land.’
      • ‘He couldn't believe it - he was the lord and master of his own land.’
      • ‘The plotline is simple, but the real complexities of the film lie in the newspaper offices, not the fight against the evil drug lords.’
      • ‘Meara cowered, for the one thing she feared was her lord and master.’
      master, lord and master, ruler, leader, chief, superior, monarch, sovereign, king, emperor, prince, governor, commander, captain, overlord, suzerain, baron, potentate, liege, liege lord
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    7. 1.7Lord A name for God or Christ.
      ‘give thanks to the Lord’
      • ‘Let my words reflect the life, love, and grace of my Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ, in whose name I pray, amen.’
      • ‘Everyone will know the Gospel, and everyone will know The Lord.’
      • ‘They had had a revelation of who Jesus is: both Lord and Christ.’
      • ‘I ask this in the mighty name of my Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ!’
      • ‘The one person is the Lord Jesus Christ, or Jesus Christ the Lord.’
      god, the father, jehovah, the almighty, the supreme being, the deity
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  • Used in exclamations expressing surprise or worry, or for emphasis.

    ‘Lord, I'm cold!’
    • ‘She felt a faint pang of fear and unknowing. Oh, Lord!’
    • ‘Someone Save Me From These Turbulent Republicans! - Oh, Lord!’
    • ‘I held a one-woman demonstration in favor of Gay Pride in Erie, PA over 30 years ago - Lord!’
    • ‘Oh Lord! What a wonderful occasion!’
    • ‘I've tried - Lord, how I've tried - to pay zero attention to the court case.’


  • 1lord it overAct in a superior and domineering manner towards (someone)

    ‘when we were at school, you used to lord it over us’
    • ‘A while back, I wondered: ‘How long can the equilibrium of technically incompetent rulers lording it over technologically advanced societies be maintained?’’
    • ‘The second-ranked bird can lord it over all those below it, and so on.’
    • ‘For too long, parents have lorded it over their children!’
    • ‘My lovely wife has been lording it over me ever since, unimpressed with the meager success I've had with prior awards.’
    • ‘It is a short step to lording it over your dispirited, lonely and inevitably disappointed wife, and your deracinated offspring.’
    • ‘It was fast developing into a two-tier event, with France and England lording it over the Celtic subordinates.’
    • ‘Those who are stronger, prettier and quicker tend to lord it over the kids who don't have those qualities that make one popular.’
    • ‘The general behavior of the sprinters - lording it over their opponents in a taunting and self-congratulatory manner - was the opposite of what the Olympics are supposed to be about: international friendship and solidarity.’
    • ‘The side which has absolutely lorded it over English club rugby for the best part of a decade have shown that their horizons have stretched outside domestic domination.’
    • ‘Sure, our game has seen extraordinary characters in the recent past, lording it over this or that club.’
    • ‘This is not about lording it over Unionism but a genuine new start for future generations.’
    • ‘When things are going well for them politically, they are unbearably arrogant, shoving it in everyone's faces, ungraciously lording it over all concerned.’
    • ‘She needed Amanda to help her through life; Amanda clearly needed Jennifer in order to be able to boss about and lord it over someone.’
    • ‘If we hadn't done it they would have been strutting around on the steps lording it over everyone.’
    • ‘And they lorded it over us when we made mistakes.’
    • ‘She's really intelligent but she never throws it in your face or tries to lord it over you.’
    • ‘Their contempt for those they lorded it over never diminished.’
    • ‘Since the 16th century the Perrots had lorded it over Pembrokeshire, the grandest of them the giant Sir John, the viceroy of Ireland, said to have been the illegitimate son of Henry VIII.’
    • ‘We do not seek to be considered superior to heterosexuals and lord it over them.’
    • ‘In the seven games that they won the young squad travelled thousands of kilometres, lording it over 191 other contesting schools.’
    order about, order around, boss about, boss around, give orders to, domineer, dominate, dictate to, pull rank on, tyrannize, bully, browbeat, oppress, repress, ride roughshod over, have under one's thumb
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  • 2archaic with object Confer the title of Lord upon.

    ‘Sir Cadwallader Pleadwell has been lately lorded’
    • ‘Patronage from the leader of your party would be the way to get lorded.’


  • live like a lord

    • Live sumptuously.

      • ‘In his home he had many white servants and henchmen and really lived like a lord.’
      • ‘Gianni was well-to-do, and lived like a lord, but Lisi was so poor that he could hardly keep body and soul together.’
      • ‘But many lords were more interested in, well, living like a lord, not acting like an accountant.’
      • ‘He lived like a lord in a luxurious villa whose German owner he had evicted, driving through the locality in a white 1938 Mercedes Benz with a German girlfriend on his arm.’
      • ‘But compared to most people around the world, I live like a lord.’
      • ‘You can live like a lord in castles and elegant manor houses or stay in cozy village inns and luxury hotels in prime locations.’
      • ‘Of course at that time I was a single man and lived like a lord.’
      • ‘Currently, in Transylvania, it costs comparatively little to live like a lord.’
      • ‘The restaurant at lunchtime is a great place to start living like a lord.’
      • ‘This package gives you the chance to really live like a lord!’
  • Lord (God) of hosts

    • God as Lord over earthly or heavenly armies.

      • ‘For behold, the day comes, burning like an oven, when all the arrogant and all evildoers will be stubble; the day that comes shall burn them up, says the Lord of hosts, so that it will leave them neither root nor branch.’
      • ‘Holy, holy, holy is the Lord of hosts; the whole earth is full of his glory!’
      • ‘And ye shall tread down the wicked; for they shall be ashes under the soles of your feet in the day that I shall do this, saith The Lord of hosts.’
      • ‘O Lord of hosts, blessed is the man that trusteth in thee ’.’
      • ‘I am lost, for I am a man of unclean lips, and I live among a people of unclean lips; yet my eyes have seen the King, the Lord of hosts!’
  • lord of the manor

    • The owner of a manor house (formerly the master of a feudal manor).

      • ‘In feudal times the serfs had to rely on the beneficence of the lord of the manor.’
      • ‘This reliance on the local lord of the manor was all part of the feudal system introduced by William the Conqueror.’
      • ‘By the Statute of Merton the lord of the manor or other owner of a village was allowed to enclose waste land for his own use only if he left adequate pasture for the villagers.’
      • ‘After the Norman Conquest the system of feudal landholding required the lord of the manor to provide a court for his tenants.’
      • ‘So, the peasants paid taxes to the king, taxes to the church, taxes and dues to the lord of the manor, as well as numerous indirect taxes on wine, salt, and bread.’
      • ‘Yet manorial extents from the 1200s onwards often indicate considerable changes in the area of the lord of the manor's demesne and its management.’
      • ‘The poll tax was withdrawn but the peasants were forced back into their old way of life - under the control of the lord of the manor.’
      • ‘This was a tax paid to the lord of the manor when an animal had been sold by its owner.’
      • ‘In medieval Europe, everyone from the lord of the manor to the village locals had a say in deciding who should wed.’
      • ‘For instance, the lords of the manor were learning to make better use of their serfs.’
      noble, nobleman, peer, aristocrat, patrician, grandee
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  • Lord of Misrule

    • historical A person presiding over Christmas games and revelry in a wealthy household.

      • ‘The fun was presided over by the Lord of Misrule, full of lewd and naughty pranks - and usually strictly for the grown-ups.’
      • ‘Cromwell's Puritanism was offended by bacchanalian revelry, led by the Lord of Misrule.’
      • ‘The songs they sang were traditional and tied in with pre-Victorian mid-winter celebrations where the Lord of Misrule presided over jollities which were rather wild at heart.’
      • ‘Our pagan ancestors had a wild and boozy time presided over by the Lord of Misrule, who got up to rude and mischievous pranks.’
      • ‘One night just before Yuletide, the Lord of Misrule pursued the Wren Boys through London's cobbled streets.’
  • Lord Muck

    • informal A haughty or socially pretentious man.

      • ‘He knew exactly where his bed was and laid on it like Lord Muck, and seemed quite astonished when we told him to get off the sofa!’
      • ‘With staff to milk the cows and break in the race-horses, he is free to prepare himself for his illustrious future - principally by poncing about like Lord Muck.’
      • ‘They have never done a day's building work in their lives, and when they come to visit the site they ponce around like Lord Muck.’
      • ‘Gapping for the school leaver, or for the newly minted graduate, is what the grand tour was for young Lord Muck in the 18th century.’
  • the Lord's Day

    • Sunday.

      ‘I go to church on the Lord's Day’
      • ‘We rely on preaching in our church, and we have two services with preaching every Lord's Day, because we are confident in this method Jesus used and that God has promised to bless.’
      • ‘Others mistakenly think that keeping the Lord's Day or attending church meetings (or doing any number of religious things) earn saving merit.’
      • ‘It is not the specifically Jewish Sabbath we observe, but the Lord's Day that is the Christian Sabbath.’
      • ‘Some felt it a religious duty to observe days other than the Lord's Day.’
      • ‘In 1993 the Sunday Trading Act set about dismantling the legislation protecting the Lord's Day.’
      • ‘Sunday is the Lord's Day, the Christian sabbath on which we rest from our labors and in Christ and refresh ourselves in worship.’
      • ‘There are certain things to which the church should be committed, and one of those is the role of the Lord's Day in the life of the churches.’
      • ‘Throughout the whole sickness he regularly preached every Lord's Day in some of the churches.’
      • ‘Is it possible to have a healthy involvement in sport, and still put Christianity first particularly when it comes to keeping the Lord's Day?’
      • ‘But they would assemble as we do on the first day of the week for worship and, frequently, if not every Lord's Day, they would celebrate the sacrament.’
  • the Lord's Prayer

    • The prayer taught by Christ to his disciples, beginning ‘Our Father’.

      • ‘Together with the huge congregation we recited the Nicene Creed and the Lord's Prayer.’
      • ‘These are the seminal texts of the tradition: the Lord's Prayer, the Magnificat, the Benedictus.’
      • ‘When Jesus taught his disciples the Lord's Prayer, he used ‘Our Father’ to address God.’
      • ‘Then, kneeling or standing, say the Apostles' Creed and the Lord's Prayer.’
      • ‘There is even a section of prayers based on the Lord's Prayer.’
      • ‘What gave him comfort and strength, he said, were the old liturgies and prayers - the psalms, the Lord's Prayer, the creeds.’
      • ‘Meetings conclude by sharing prayer requests and saying the Lord's Prayer.’
      • ‘This is how we will experience the peace and unity with the Father that the Lord's Prayer describes so beautifully.’
      • ‘Imagine writing a book about the Lord's Prayer, or the Ave Maria, or one of Shakespeare's sonnets.’
      • ‘As we have remarked earlier, the only part of the Lord's Prayer which Jesus repeated was the part dealing with forgiveness.’
  • the Lord's Supper

    • The Eucharist; Holy Communion (especially in Protestant use).

      • ‘Even if they are baptized, Christians from denominations without a sacramental view of the Lord's Supper would hardly seem sufficiently informed about what is going on in the Episcopal rite to participate properly.’
      • ‘A covenant sign was a marker token which was a reminder of reality - like the rainbow, circumcision, baptism and Lord's Supper.’
      • ‘The earliest theologians were concerned not only with the meaning of the Scriptures, but also, with the theological implications of such Christian practices as baptism and the Lord's Supper.’
      • ‘We have God's word in Jesus, and we have God's grace in Baptism and the Lord's Supper.’
      • ‘Protestants observe only two sacraments, baptism and the Lord's Supper, for we find that these are the only two that Jesus commanded to be observed.’
      • ‘That status is confined to the Lord's Supper and baptism.’
      • ‘The Lord's Supper and Christian worship continue this witness beyond initiation in baptism into the further dimensions of Christian life, already in the emerging kingdom of God but not yet completed.’
      • ‘Should we call communion the Lord's Supper or Eucharist?’
      • ‘In contrast to symbolic, visual worship, we have but two sacraments, the Lord's Supper and Baptism, and beyond that we are directed to worship not through anticipatory symbols and the visual, but in the Spirit through the word.’
      • ‘God has given us two wonderful pictures of the gospel, Baptism and the Lord's Supper.’
      eucharist, holy communion, lord's supper, mass
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  • My Lord

    • (in the UK) a polite form of address to judges, bishops, and certain noblemen.

      ‘‘My Lord,’ he apologized. ‘I did not intend to give offence.’’
      • ‘"No, my Lord Bishop," said Robin, taking his hat off and bowing politely, "no, my lord, you cannot go yet."’
      • ‘The judge asked the doctor if he was sure of his testimony in light of the evidence from the other doctors. "I am quite certain, my lord," said the doctor.’
      • ‘Unfortunately being Lord of the Manor doesn't entitle you to be addressed as My Lord.’
  • Our Lord

    • Used as a title for God or Jesus Christ.

      ‘the resurrection of Our Lord’
      • ‘And Our Lord is stronger than death since He has both raised us from the dead, and will raise us from the graves.’
      • ‘It is reasonable to suppose that Our Lord was conceived immediately after this.’
      • ‘This website is devoted to Jesus Christ Our Lord because of His infinite Good and Mercy.’
      christ, jesus, jesus christ, the redeemer, the messiah, our lord, the lamb of god, the son of god, the son of man, the prince of peace, the king of kings, emmanuel
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Old English hlāford, from hlāfweard ‘bread-keeper’, from a Germanic base (see loaf, ward). Compare with lady.