from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • noun One who offers advice.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • noun an expert who gives advice


Sorry, no etymologies found.



Log in or sign up to get involved in the conversation. It's quick and easy.

  • Why do all spell checking tools underline this word? Is it acceptable?

    December 30, 2008

  • Yes. It may be underlining thinking that adviser is what you want, but according to Merriam-Webster, the two are interchangeable in meaning.

    P.S. if it matters, we just changed all instances of "adviser" to "advisor" in something I'm editing now.

    December 30, 2008

  • If I remember correctly, advisor is the product of false etymology by mistaken analogy with visor; it's just become commonplace enough to appear in the dictionaries anyway.

    December 30, 2008

  • Rather than believe VO's false etymology hypothesis, one might just think that "advisor" is by analogy with "supervisor", since both root verbs have the same suffix.

    For the record, I always spell it "advisor"

    December 30, 2008

  • From the look of the OED quotations, 'advisor' became common in AmE usage from about 1900. It is now three to four times more common than 'adviser' in AmE and slightly more common in BrE on the Web at least. This is on both the raw Google figures (as I've just checked) and on Lynneguist's survey of academic usage.

    However, the BNC, which reflects slightly older BrE use, has 'adviser' six times more often than 'advisor', and I think this reflects our intuitions better than the near-equal split of Web hits.

    Unlike most other -vise words, 'advise' doesn't directly contain the Latin verb vid-, vis- "see", but comes via a prepositional phrase containing a noun. So its verbal inflexion had to be re-formed in Late Latin, rather than being regularly inherited from the base verb. It's not a classical word, but there apparently was a Late Latin advisor (mentioned in OED s.v. 'advisory').

    December 30, 2008

  • According to the O.E.D., supervise derives from supervidere (super + videre), advise from advisare (not advidere/ad + videre).

    December 30, 2008

  • Damn! I just hate it when the facts don't match what I imagine I "know".

    Thanks, Vanished One.

    December 31, 2008

  • @qroqqa: the O.E.D. entry for advisory actually says: 'f. ADVISE + -ORY, as if ad. late L. *advimacsomacrius, f. late L. advimacsor.', which makes it unclear (depending on the scope of the 'as if') whether late Latin advisor actually existed, or whether advisory is just formed as though it did. Is Latin advisor attested anywhere?

    December 31, 2008

  • This is all very cool to know. Thanks!

    (We are still spelling it "advisor.")

    December 31, 2008

  • I assumed from the lack of asterisk against advisor that it was attested, whereas its presumed derivative *advisorius wasn't. The 'as if' need only have scope over the first word. It's not in my Latin dictionary nor in Perseus, but I don't know what date Perseus goes up to: advisor (assuming it existed) could have been mediaeval.

    December 31, 2008