Definition of au pair noun from the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary


au pair

BrE BrE//ˌəʊ ˈpeə(r)//
; NAmE NAmE//ˌoʊ ˈper//
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a young person, usually a woman, who lives with a family in a foreign country in order to learn the language. An au pair helps in the house and takes care of children and receives a small wage. She worked in Paris for six months as an au pair. There are very few male au pairs. We decided to get an au pair to help with the children. Word Originlate 19th cent.: from French, literally ‘on equal terms’. The phrase was originally adjectival, describing an arrangement between two parties paid for by the exchange of mutual services; the noun usage dates from the 1960s.
See the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary entry: au pair