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- (Received Pronunciation) IPA(key): /ˌleɪdɪ ɪn ˈweɪtɪŋ/
- (General American) IPA(key): /ˌleɪdi ɪn ˈweɪtɪŋ/, [-ɾɪŋ]
- Rhymes: -eɪtɪŋ
- Hyphenation: lady-in-wait‧ing
- A lady, often a noblewoman, in the household of a queen, princess, or other woman of higher rank who attends her as a personal assistant, generally a role considered an honour.
- Synonym: court lady
- 1751, [Frederick the Great], “Frederick III. the First King of Prussia”, in Memoirs of the House of Brandenburg. From the Earliest Accounts, to the Death of Frederick I. King of Prussia. […], Dublin: Printed by S. Powell, for G. Faulkner […], and Matt[hew] Williamson […], OCLC 833933702, page 100:
- 1796, “Chronicle. [February 1st.]”, in The Annual Register, or A View of the History, Politics, and Literature, for the Year 1796, volume XV, 2nd edition, London: Printed by B[uchanan] McMillan, […], for the proprietors of Dodsley’s Annual Register, […], published 1807, OCLC 880595708, page 5:
- This night, after eleven o'clock, as the royal family were returning from Drury-lane theatre, when the carriages had reached the end of John-street, Pall Mall, a stone was flung with such force as to break one of the glass pannels in the coach, in which were their majesties and the lady in waiting; which, after striking the queen on the cheek, fell into lady Harrington's lap.
- 1883, Howard Pyle, “The Chase of Robin Hood”, in The Merry Adventures of Robin Hood of Great Renown, in Nottinghamshire, New York, N.Y.: Printed by Charles Scribner’s Sons […], OCLC 22773434, part seventh, page 250:
- Of a sudden a man leapt up to the top of the wall from the other side, and then, hanging for a moment, dropped lightly upon the grass within. All the ladies-in-waiting shrieked at the suddenness of his coming, but the man ran to the Queen and kneeled at her feet, and she saw it was Robin Hood.
- 1920, J[ohn] O[tway] P[ercy] Bland, “[Exhibit G.] Three Palaces.”, in Administration of Immigration Laws: Hearings before the Committee on Immigration and Naturalization: House of Representatives, Sixty-sixth Congress, Second Session: […], Washington, D.C.: Government Printing Office, OCLC 19444224, page 373:
- The political influence wielded by many of the court ladies, and especially by the first lady-in-waiting (mother of the present Emperor), bears a certain resemblance to that which the eunuchs wielded under the later Manchus at the court of Peking. [...] And behind the 30 ladies-in-waiting there are the rank and file of female palace attendants, some 300, all of Kyoto stock—quite sufficient to keep any conscientious chamberlain on the qui vive.
- 1986 September–October, Harold Courlander, “How Makeda Visited Jerusalem, and How Menelik Became King”, in Robert G. Forman, editor, Michigan Alumnus, volume 93, number 1, Ann Arbor, Mich.: Published by the Alumni Association of the University of Michigan, ISSN 0746-2565, OCLC 1002806227, page 37, columns 2–3:
- At last she [Makeda, the Queen of Sheba] was overcome by a desire to go to Jerusalem and see with her own eyes the things about which she had heard. [...] She chose as her companion on the journey her lady-in-waiting, and the two of them travelled in sedan chairs mounted on the backs of camels.
- 2013, Joanne Mattern, “A Life at Court”, in Dona Herweck Rice, editor, Geoffrey Chaucer: Medieval Writer, Huntington Beach, Calif.: Teacher Created Materials, →ISBN, page 14:
- Young girls from wealthy families were often sent to the royal court to help the queen and noblewomen. After becoming a teenager, a girl could then be named a lady-in-waiting. These ladies assisted their mistress in any way and usually went with her when she traveled.
lady in the household of a woman of higher rank who attends he as a personal assistant
woman who is a maid or servant to a lady