Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. Used formerly as the title of the governor of Algiers before the French conquest in 1830.
  • n. Used formerly as the title for rulers of the states of Tunis and Tripoli.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A servant who has charge of the dairy; a dairymaid.
  • n. The title given to the ruler of the Regency of Algiers (now Algeria) under the Ottoman Empire.
  • pro. Eye dialect spelling of they, representing African American Vernacular English.
  • pro. Eye dialect spelling of there, representing African American Vernacular English.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. A servant who has charge of the dairy; a dairymaid.
  • n. The governor of Algiers; -- so called before the French conquest in 1830.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. A female (sometimes a male) servant who had charge of a dairy and all things pertaining to it; a female servant in general.
  • n. The title of the governor of Algiers under Turkish suzerainty from 1710 till its conquest by the French in 1830.

Etymologies

French, from Turkish dayı, maternal uncle.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
Old English dǣġe, from Proto-Germanic *daigijōn. Cognate with Swedish deja; compare dairy, dough, lady. (Wiktionary)
From French dey, from Turkish dayı. (Wiktionary)

Examples

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