Definition of paramour in US English:



  • A lover, especially the illicit partner of a married person.

    • ‘Alas, when the desired moment of assignation arrives, his beloved paramour is not to be found, and another girl offers to fill her place.’
    • ‘He is in trouble again for sharing his largesse with two young paramours that he claimed to have ditched in favor of his wife and four kids.’
    • ‘Is it too much to have these characters actually act like fathers and daughters, and not just like rich, sleazy sugar daddies with their young, illicit paramours tagging along for the ride?’
    • ‘And one set of civil servants was able to keep tabs on their boss only by asking his official driver which of his paramours ' flats he had been parked outside that day.’
    • ‘He informed her that her paramour was already married and as per the Shariah rules he can have another wife only if he can do justice to his first wife.’
    lover, beloved, significant other
    View synonyms


Middle English: from Old French par amour ‘by love’; in English the phrase was written from an early date as one word and came to be treated as a noun.