American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition
- n. The leading woman soloist in an opera company.
- n. A temperamental, conceited person.
- n. opera The principal female singer or the leading lady.
- n. A person who considers himself or herself much more important than others, has high expectations of others and becomes angry when his or her standards or demands are not met.
GNU Webster's 1913
- The first or chief female singer in an opera.
- n. a vain and temperamental person
- n. a distinguished female operatic singer; a female operatic star
- From Italian prima donna ("first lady"), from Latin prīma, feminine of prīmus ("first") + domina ("lady"). (Wiktionary)
- Italian : prima, feminine of primo, first + donna, lady. (American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
“If he seems ungallant in his references to his future Queen of the Night and to the prima donna of his “Elopement from the Seraglio,” to say nothing of his former attachment for her, one must remember that this is a letter from a son to a father, in which frankness is permissible.”
“And Penelope Gates was starting to act like a prima donna and wanted everyone ﬁ red.””
“Chopin's first visit was to Miss Pechwell, through whom he got admission to a soiree at the house of Dr. Kreyssig, where she was going to play and the prima donna of the Italian opera to sing.”
“Fetis calls her the Archduchess Vittoria, but both agree that she was beautiful and that she filled the part of the prima donna in 'Roderigo,' his first Italian score.”
“Among the young Irishman's new acquaintances was Madame Weichsel, prima donna of His Majesty's Theatre, and mother of the more celebrated Mrs. Billington.”
“His violation of Captain Dietrich’s direct order: no strongarm, no prima donna in the City.”
“That the American prima donna elected to study with Frau Cosima shows that she must have found Wagner's widow a woman of rare temperament.”
“But Nohl's theory that her head was turned by her admission to the favour that quickly surrounds the successful prima donna is hardly to be held, in view of the fact that in rejecting a man of Mozart's prominence she took the actor Lange, who had little, if any, more prominence.”
“Martin, easing down old U.S. 66 with a load of prima donna dogs, began to wonder if he really was listening to a remake of "War of the Worlds.”
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