From Middle English leder, ledere, from Old English lǣdere (“leader”), equivalent to lead + -er. Cognate with Scots ledar, leidar (“leader”), West Frisian lieder (“leader”), Dutch leider (“leader”), German Leiter (“leader, conductor, manager”), Danish leder (“leader, manager”), Swedish ledare (“leader, conductor, director”), Icelandic leiðari (“leader, conductor”).
leader (plural leaders)
- Any person or thing that leads or conducts.
2012 January 1, Philip E. Mirowski, “Harms to Health from the Pursuit of Profits”, American Scientist, volume 100, number 1, page 87:
- In an era when political leaders promise deliverance from decline through America’s purported preeminence in scientific research, the news that science is in deep trouble in the United States has been as unwelcome as a diagnosis of leukemia following the loss of health insurance.
- One who goes first.
- Follow the leader.
- One having authority to direct.
- We elected her team leader.
- One who leads a political party or group of elected party members; sometimes used in titles.
- A person or thing that leads in a certain field in terms of excellence, success, etc.
- The company is the leader in home remodeling in the county.
- (music) A performer who leads a band, choir, or a section of an orchestra.
- (music, UK) The first violin in a symphony orchestra; the concertmaster.
- The dominant animal in a pack of animals, such as wolves or lions.
1987, Sylvia A. Johnson; Alice Aamodt, Wolf Pack: Tracking Wolves in the Wild, page 41:
- The gesture of licking and nipping a leader's muzzle is similar to the food-begging behavior of wolf pups and may be related to it.
- An animal placed in advance of others, especially on a team of horse, oxen, or dogs.
1846, Julius Charles Hare, “On the Comforter's conviction of Righteousness”, in The mission of the Comforter, and other sermons with Notes:
- Still there are many passages in his [Donne's] writings, where it is plain that he forgot to pull in his leaders; and they gallop away with him at times over hill and dale, over ploughed land and waste.
- (botany) A fast-growing terminal shoot of a woody plant.
1975, David J. De Laubenfels, Mapping the world's vegetation: regionalization of formations and flora, page 82:
- A strong central leader may result in essentially horizontal branches resembling a "telephone pole."
- A pipe for conducting rain water from a roof to a cistern or to the ground.
- (UK) The first, or the principal, editorial article in a newspaper; a leading or main editorial article; a lead story.
- (fishing) A section of line between the main fishing line and the snell of a hook, intended to be more resistant to bites and harder for a fish to detect than the main fishing line.
- A piece of material at the beginning or end of a reel or roll to allow the material to the threaded or fed onto something, as a reel of film onto a projector or a roll of paper onto a rotary printing press.
- (marketing) A loss leader or a popular product sold at a normal price.
- (printing) A type having a dot or short row of dots upon its face.
- (printing, in the plural) A row of dots, periods, or hyphens, used in tables of contents, etc., to lead the eye across a space to the right word or number.
- (fishing) A net for leading fish into a pound, weir, etc.
1852, D. Gilbert, “Geering”, in Appleton's dictionary of machines, mechanics, engine-work, and engineering, page 786:
- when two wheels geer together, the one which communicates the motion to the other is called the driver or leader; and the wheel impelled is the follower
- (mining) A branch or small vein, not important in itself, but indicating the proximity of a better one.
- (nautical) A block of hard wood pierced with suitable holes for leading ropes in their proper places.
- (engineering) The drive wheel in any kind of machinery.
- For usage examples of this term, see the citations page.
- (one that leads or conducts): guide, conductor
- (one with authority to direct): chief, chieftain, commander
- (music): conductor
- (dominant animal in group): alpha, pack leader
- (engineering): driver, drive wheel
- The translations below need to be checked and inserted above into the appropriate translation tables, removing any numbers. Numbers do not necessarily match those in definitions. See instructions at Help:How to check translations.
leader m (plural leaders)
- "leader" in le Trésor de la langue française informatisé (The Digitized Treasury of the French Language).
leader m, f (invariable)
- leader (chief; one in front)