Definition of ménage in English:



  • The members of a household.

    ‘the Clelland ménage’
    • ‘In 1869 Bizet married Geneviève, the daughter of his teacher Halévy, but their ménage was soon interrupted by the outbreak of the Franco-Prussian War and the turmoil of the Commune.’
    • ‘He asked his grandmother, with whom the family lived in a ménage that included the up-and-coming young pianist John Lill, for a loan of £50 to buy it.’
    • ‘Moreover, even though the men in the film do ultimately incorporate the mother, her return is experienced by the audience as an unfair intrusion and the men's inclusion of her in their ménage a generous (if also pragmatic) gesture.’
    • ‘Picasso's turbulent love-life and his complicated ménage of women and ‘love-children’ meant that women are central to his art.’
    • ‘You'll find your run-of-the-mill standard, square tables, some even set for three for ménages of the same size, but what's really nice is the presence of larger round tables, more conducive to dinner with conversation.’
    family, household, ménage, clan, tribe
    View synonyms


Middle English: from Old French menage, from mainer to stay, influenced by Old French mesnie household, both ultimately based on Latin manere remain.