kept woman

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English[edit]

Noun[edit]

kept woman (plural kept women)

  1. A woman who is supported financially by a lover (usually a married man).
    • 1912, David Graham Phillips, The Price She Paid, ch. 6:
      He said: "Why bother about a career? After all, kept woman is a thoroughly respectable occupation—or can be made so by any preacher or justice of the peace. . . ."
      "I could not belong to a man unless I cared for him," said she.
    • 1919, Jerome K. Jerome, All Roads Lead to Calvary, ch. 5:
      "I'm a kept woman," she explained. "What else is any woman?"
    • 1932 Aug. 8, "Cinema: The New Pictures," Time:
      Fannie Hurst's tender and moving biography of a kept woman is here reproduced in a sincere, detailed picture. Irene Dunne . . . falls in love with John Boles, a pedigreed young banker, who by a series of misunderstandings, makes her his mistress instead of his wife.

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