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Borrowed from Latin proprietor, from proprietas (property), from proprius (one's own).


  • IPA(key): /pɹəˈpɹaɪətɚ/
  • (file)


proprietor (plural proprietors, feminine proprietress)

  1. An owner.
    • 2013 August 10, Lexington, “Keeping the mighty honest”, in The Economist, volume 408, number 8848:
      The [Washington] Post's proprietor through those turbulent [Watergate] days, Katharine Graham, held a double place in Washington’s hierarchy: at once regal Georgetown hostess and scrappy newshound, ready to hold the establishment to account. That is a very American position. British journalists shun complete respectability, feeling a duty to be ready to savage the mighty, or rummage through their bins.
  2. A sole owner of an unincorporated business, also called a sole proprietor.
  3. One of the owners of an unincorporated business, a partner.
  4. (historical) One or more persons to whom a colonial territory is assigned, like a fief, including its administration.
    From 10 September 1621 till 12 June 1632, Sir William Alexander, styled Earl of Stirling and Viscount of Canada, was proprietor of the Scottish colony Nova Scotia.


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proprietor, genitive proprietoris

  1. An owner