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From Middle English steward, from Old English stīweard, stīġweard (steward, housekeeper, one who has the superintendence of household affairs, guardian), from stīġ in the sense house, hall + weard (ward, guard, guardian, keeper).[1][2] Compare Icelandic stívarður (steward). More at sty, ward.


  • (file)
  • (UK) IPA(key): /ˈstjuː.ə(ɹ)d/
  • Hyphenation: stew‧ard


steward (plural stewards, feminine stewardess)

  1. A person who manages the property or affairs for another entity, particularly (historical) the chief administrator of a medieval manor.
  2. A ship's officer who is in charge of making dining arrangements and provisions.
    • 1915, George A. Birmingham, “chapter I”, in Gossamer (Project Gutenberg; EBook #24394), London: Methuen & Co., published 8 January 2013 (Project Gutenberg version), OCLC 558189256:
      There is an hour or two, after the passengers have embarked, which is disquieting and fussy. Mail bags, so I understand, are being put on board. Stewards, carrying cabin trunks, swarm in the corridors. Passengers wander restlessly about or hurry, with futile energy, from place to place.
  3. A flight attendant, (chiefly) a male flight attendant.
  4. A union member who is selected as a representative for fellow workers in negotiating terms with management.
  5. A person who has charge of buildings and/or grounds and/or animals.
  6. A fiscal agent of certain bodies.
    a steward in a Methodist church
  7. In some colleges, an officer who provides food for the students and superintends the kitchen; also, an officer who attends to the accounts of the students.
  8. In Scotland, a magistrate appointed by the crown to exercise jurisdiction over royal lands.
    (Can we find and add a quotation of Erskine to this entry?)
  9. In information technology, somebody who is responsible for managing a set of projects, products or technologies and how they affect the IT organization to which they belong.

Usage notes[edit]

With regard to airlines, steward is usually distinguished from the more common and exclusively feminine stewardess in colloquial speech, while the gender-neutral flight attendant is usually preferred to both in formal contexts. For the sake of brevity, steward is sometimes treated as a gender-neutral term itself and applied to both male and female flight attendants.



Derived terms[edit]



steward (third-person singular simple present stewards, present participle stewarding, simple past and past participle stewarded)

  1. To act as the steward or caretaker of (something)
    • 2007 May 1, Richard G. Jones, “An Acting Governor’s Balancing Act: Taking the Lead Without Stepping on Toes”, in New York Times[1]:
      Assemblyman John S. Wisniewski, a Democrat from Middlesex County, said, “It’s an uncomfortable situation,” but added that Mr. Codey is nevertheless “ably stewarding the state.”





Borrowing from English steward.


steward m (plural stewards)

  1. steward

Further reading[edit]



Borrowed from English steward.


steward m (plural stewarzi)

  1. steward


Related terms[edit]