Definition of lady noun from the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary



plural ladies
1 [countable] a word used to mean “woman” that some people, especially older people, consider is more politeThere's a lady waiting to see you.He was with an attractive young lady.the ladies' golf championshipa cleaning lady (= a woman who cleans an office or a private home)(approving)She's a tough lady.a lady doctor/golferhelp Some women object to the way lady is used in some of these examples and prefer it to be avoided if possible: a doctor/a woman doctor There's someone waiting to see you. see also bag lady, cleaning lady, first lady, leading lady, old lady2 [countable] a woman who is polite and well educated, has excellent manners, and always behaves wellHis wife was a real lady. compare gentleman3 [countable, usually plural] (formal) used when speaking to or about a girl or woman, especially someone you do not knowCan I take your coats, ladies?Could I have your attention, ladies and gentlemen?help Some women do not like ladies used on its own, as in the first example, and prefer it to be left out.4 [singular] an informal way to talk to a woman, showing a lack of respectListen, lady, don't shout at me.5 (also lady friend) [countable] (old-fashioned) a girlfriendMax and his lady went dancing last night.6 [countable] (old-fashioned) a woman belonging to a high social classthe lords and ladies of the courta lady's maid7 Lady [countable] a title used by a woman who is a member of the British nobility, or by someone who has been given the title lady as an honor. The wives and daughters of some members of the nobility and the wives of knights are also called LadyLady HoweLady Jane Gray compare lord, sir8 Our Lady [singular] a title used to refer to Mary, the mother of Christ, especially in the Roman Catholic ChurchOur Lady of LourdesIDIOMS

a gentleman/lady/man/woman of leisure

(humorous) a man/woman who does not have to worka gentleman/man/woman of leisurea lady/man/woman of leisure

it's not over until the fat lady sings

(saying) used for saying that a situation may still change, for example that a contest, an election, etc. is not finished yet, and someone still has a chance to win itit's not over until the fat lady sings

lady of the house

(old-fashioned) a woman who is in charge of a householdThe salesman asked if the lady of the house was at home.lady of the house