locum tenens

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Existing in English since the seventeenth century: from Medieval Latin locum tenens (literally one holding a place).[1] Doublet of lieutenant.



locum tenens (plural locum tenentes or locos tenentes)

  1. A professional person (such as a doctor or clergyman) who temporarily fulfills the duties of another.
    • 1820, The Steeliad, a Poem, in Three Cantos, page 35:
      [] who speedily installed his Son [] into the office of Collector of Taxes, as a warming-pan, or locum tenens, till his Father-in-Law's twelvemonths of mock-heroic dignity had expired—or he should think proper to resume the Collectorship.
    • 1912, Arthur Conan Doyle, The Lost World [], London, New York, N.Y.: Hodder and Stoughton, →OCLC:
      "I expected better things of you, Professor Summerlee." "You must remember," said Summerlee, sourly, "that I have a large class in London who are at present at the mercy of an extremely inefficient locum tenens."


Related terms[edit]



  1. ^ The Concise Oxford English Dictionary [Eleventh Edition]