secretary


secretary
[14] A secretary was originally a ‘person in someone else’s confidence, sharing secret or private matters with them’ (‘[Christ] taking with him his three special secretaries, that is to say Peter and James and John’, Nicholas Love, Mirror of the life of Jesus Christ 1400). The word was adapted from late Latin sēcrētārius ‘confidential aide’, a derivative of Latin sēcrētus ‘secret’. The notion of writing letters and performing other clerical duties developed in the Latin word, and first emerged in English in the 15th century. => SECRET
* * *
   A secretary was originally, as often even now, a confidant, a keeper of secrets. Hence the origin of the word in Medieval Latin secretarius, from Latin secretum, literally 'something hidden' (English secrete).

The Hutchinson dictionary of word origins. 2013.

Synonyms:

Look at other dictionaries:

  • secretary — sec‧re‧ta‧ry [ˈsekrtri ǁ teri] noun secretaries PLURALFORM [countable] JOBS 1. someone who works in an office helping to organize the work, answering the telephone, arranging meetings etc: • His personal secretary (= one working for only him )… …   Financial and business terms

  • Secretary — Título La secretaria Ficha técnica Dirección Steven Shainberg Producción Andrew Fierberg Amy Hobby Steven Shainberg …   Wikipedia Español

  • Secretary — Sec re*ta*ry, n.; pl. {Secretaries}. [F. secr[ e]taire (cf. Pr. secretari, Sp. & Pg. secretario, It. secretario, segretario) LL. secretarius, originally, a confidant, one intrusted with secrets, from L. secretum a secret. See {Secret}, a. & n.] 1 …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • secretary — sec·re·tary n pl tar·ies often cap 1: an officer of a business concern who may keep records of directors and stockholders meetings and of stock ownership and transfer and help supervise the company s interests 2: a government officer who… …   Law dictionary

  • Secretary —   [ sekrətri] der, /...ries, in England im 16. Jahrhundert Bezeichnung des leitenden Ministers, später allgemein Minister Titel. Die wichtigsten Kabinettsmitglieder heißen Secretary of State. In den USA ist »Secretary of State« nur für den… …   Universal-Lexikon

  • Secretary — Secretary, MD U.S. town in Maryland Population (2000): 503 Housing Units (2000): 218 Land area (2000): 0.258731 sq. miles (0.670109 sq. km) Water area (2000): 0.000000 sq. miles (0.000000 sq. km) Total area (2000): 0.258731 sq. miles (0.670109 sq …   StarDict's U.S. Gazetteer Places

  • Secretary, MD — U.S. town in Maryland Population (2000): 503 Housing Units (2000): 218 Land area (2000): 0.258731 sq. miles (0.670109 sq. km) Water area (2000): 0.000000 sq. miles (0.000000 sq. km) Total area (2000): 0.258731 sq. miles (0.670109 sq. km) FIPS… …   StarDict's U.S. Gazetteer Places

  • secretary — [n1] office worker assistant, clerk, executive secretary, receptionist, typist, word processor; concept 348 secretary [n2] desk bureau, davenport, escritoire, secretaire, writing desk, writing table; concept 443 …   New thesaurus

  • secretary — (n.) late 14c., person entrusted with secrets, from M.L. secretarius clerk, notary, confidential officer, confidant, from L. secretum a secret (see SECRET (Cf. secret)). Meaning person who keeps records, write letters, etc., originally for a king …   Etymology dictionary

  • secretary — should be pronounced as four syllables with the first r fully articulated, not as if it were spelt seketerry or sekretry …   Modern English usage

  • secretary — ► NOUN (pl. secretaries) 1) a person employed to assist with correspondence, keep records, etc. 2) an official of a society or other organization who conducts its correspondence and keeps its records. 3) the principal assistant of a UK government …   English terms dictionary