Ladies vs. Lady - What's the difference?

Ladies

The word lady is a term of respect for a woman, the equivalent of gentleman. Once used to describe only women of a high social class or status, now it may refer to any adult woman. Informal use of this word is sometimes euphemistic ("lady of the night" for a prostitute) or, in American slang, condescending (equivalent to "mister"). "Lady" is also a formal title in the United Kingdom. "Lady" is used before the family name of a woman with a title of nobility or honorary title suo jure (in her own right), or the wife of a lord, a baronet, laird, or a knight, and also before the first name of the daughter of a duke, marquess, or earl.

Lady

The word lady is a term of respect for a woman, the equivalent of gentleman. Once used to describe only women of a high social class or status, now it may refer to any adult woman. Informal use of this word is sometimes euphemistic ("lady of the night" for a prostitute) or, in American slang, condescending (equivalent to "mister"). "Lady" is also a formal title in the United Kingdom. "Lady" is used before the family name of a woman with a title of nobility or honorary title suo jure (in her own right), or the wife of a lord, a baronet, laird, or a knight, and also before the first name of the daughter of a duke, marquess, or earl.

Ladies vs. Lady

Ladies

Table of contents

1. Etymology
          3.1. Coordinate terms
          3.2. Derived terms
          4.1. Synonyms
          4.2. Coordinate terms
          5.1. Coordinate terms

Lady

Ladies

1. Etymology

As a lavatory for women, via misspelling of ladies'. Compare gents.

2. Pronunciation

  • IPA(key): /ˈleɪdiz/

3. Noun

ladies

  1. plural of lady
    • 2014, C.S. Walter, Abandoned Bridges, pp. 105 f.:
      He wet his thumb with saliva pressing on the tongue, ran it up and down faster over the letter 'I' of 'TOILET', the 'LADIES TOILET' was transformed into 'LADIES TO LET' in no time.

3.1. Coordinate terms

  • gents, gentlemen, men, sirs

3.2. Derived terms

  • ladies and gentlemen

4. Noun

ladies

  1. (Britain, euphemistic) A ladies' room: a lavatory intended for use by women.
    • 2000, Munroe Blair, Ceramic Water Closets, p. 15:
      London's first 'gents' public toilets were opened in Fleet Street in 1851, followed in 1852 by a 'ladies' toilet at 51 Bedford Street, Strand.

4.1. Synonyms

  • see Thesaurus:bathroom

4.2. Coordinate terms

  • gents, gentlemen, men, sirs
  • men's

5. Adjective

ladies (not comparable)

  1. Intended for use by women.
    • 2014, C.S. Walter, Abandoned Bridges, pp. 105 f.:
      He wet his thumb with saliva pressing on the tongue, ran it up and down faster over the letter 'I' of 'TOILET', the 'LADIES TOILET' was transformed into 'LADIES TO LET' in no time.

5.1. Coordinate terms

  • men's, gents

6. See also

  • madams, mesdames
  • Appendix:Special uses of possessives in English

7. Anagrams

  • aisled, deasil, ideals, sailed

Lady

1. Etymology

From Middle English lady, laddy, lafdi, lavedi, from Old English hlǣfdīġe (mistress of a household, wife of a lord, lady, literally bread-kneader), from hlāf (bread, loaf) + dīġe (maid), related to Old English dǣġe (maker of dough). Compare also lord. More at loaf, dairy, dough.

2. Pronunciation

  • IPA(key): /ˈleɪdi/
  • Rhymes: -eɪdi
  • Hyphenation: la‧dy

3. Noun

lady (plural ladies)

  1. (historical) The mistress of a household.
  2. A woman of breeding or higher class, a woman of authority.
  3. The feminine of lord.
  4. A title for someone married to a lord.
  5. A title for somebody married to a gentleman.
  6. A title that can be used instead of the formal terms of marchioness, countess, viscountess, or baroness.
  7. (polite or used by children) A woman: an adult female human.
  8. (in the plural) A polite reference or form of address to women.
  9. (slang) Used to address a female.
  10. (ladies' or ladies) Toilets intended for use by women.
  11. (familiar) A wife or girlfriend; a sweetheart.
    • , [Act II, scene ii]
      It is my Lady, O it is my Loue, O that ſhe knew ſhe were, / She ſpeaks, yet ſhe ſays nothing, what of that?
    (Can we find and add a quotation of Goldsmith to this entry?)
  12. A woman to whom the particular homage of a knight was paid; a woman to whom one is devoted or bound.
    • The ſoldier here his waſted ſtore ſupplies, / And takes new valor from the Ladies’ eyes.
  13. (slang) A queen (the playing card).
  14. (attributive, with a professional title) Who is a woman.
  15. (Wicca) Alternative form of Lady.
  16. The triturating apparatus in the stomach of a lobster, consisting of calcareous plates; so called from a fancied resemblance to a seated female figure.
  17. (Britain, slang) A five-pound note. (Rhyming slang, Lady Godiva for fiver.)
  18. (slang) A woman’s breast.

3.1. Derived terms

  • Pages starting with "lady".

3.2. References

  • Weisenberg, Michael (2000) The Official Dictionary of Poker. MGI/Mike Caro University. →ISBN

4. See also

  • lord
  • gentleman
  • ladies' room
  • broad

5. Anagrams

  • Daly, Dyal, Lyda, layd, yald

Popular Comparisons
Recently Compared