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

  • n. A person who governs, especially:
  • n. The chief executive of a state in the United States.
  • n. An official appointed to govern a colony or territory.
  • n. A member of a governing body.
  • n. The manager or administrative head of an organization, business, or institution.
  • n. A military commandant.
  • n. Chiefly British Used as a form of polite address for a man.
  • n. A feedback device on a machine or engine that is used to provide automatic control, as of speed, pressure, or temperature.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. The leader of a region or state that is a member of a federation or an empire. In Rome, they were endorsed by the emperor and appointed by the Senate. In the modern United States, they are elected by the people of that state.
  • n. A device which regulates or controls some action of a machine through automatic feedback.
  • n. A member of a decision-making for an organization or entity (including some public agencies) similar to or equivalent to a board of directors (used especially for banks); a member of the board of governors.
  • n. father.
  • n. Boss, employer.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. One who governs; especially, one who is invested with the supreme executive authority in a State; a chief ruler or magistrate.
  • n. One who has the care or guardianship of a young man; a tutor; a guardian.
  • n. A pilot; a steersman.
  • n. A contrivance applied to steam engines, water wheels, and other machinery, to maintain nearly uniform speed when the resistances and motive force are variable.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. A steersman; a pilot.
  • n. The person invested with the supreme executive power in a state or community; specifically, as a personal title, the chief magistrate of a state or province: as, the governor of Connecticut; the governor of Newfoundland. As a title, abbreviated Gov.
  • n. One who is charged with the direction or control of an undertaking or institution: as, the governors of the Bank of England; the governor of a prison or hospital.
  • n. A tutor; one who has the care of a young man; one who instructs a pupil and forms his manners. Compare governess, 2.
  • n. A father; a master or superior; an employer; an elderly person.
  • n. In machinery, a self-acting regulator which controls a supply of steam, gas, or water; especially, any device for automatically regulating the amount of power developed in a machine, as in a steamengine.
  • n. See the adjectives.
  • n. The regulator used in arc-lamps to control the current. See regulator.

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

  • n. the head of a state government
  • n. a control that maintains a steady speed in a machine (as by controlling the supply of fuel)


from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Middle English govenour, from Old French gouvreneur, from Latin gubernator, from Ancient Greek κυβερνήτης (kybernetes, "steersman, pilot, guide"), from κυβερνάω (kybernao, "to steer, to drive, to guide, to act as a pilot").


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