henchman
noun Etymology: Middle English henshman, hengestman groom, from hengest stallion (from Old English) + man; akin to Old High German hengist gelding Date: 15th century 1. obsolete a squire or page to a person of high rank 2. a. a trusted follower ; a right-hand man b. a political follower whose support is chiefly for personal advantage c. a member of a gang

New Collegiate Dictionary. 2001.

Synonyms:

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Henchman — Hench man (h[e^]nch man), n.; pl. { men} ( men). [OE. hencheman, henxman; prob. fr. OE. & AS. hengest horse + E. man, and meaning, a groom. AS. hengest is akin to D. & G. hengst stallion, OHG. hengist horse, gelding.] An attendant; a servant; a… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • henchman — index abettor, coactor, coadjutant Burton s Legal Thesaurus. William C. Burton. 2006 …   Law dictionary

  • henchman — mid 14c., hengestman, later henshman (mid 15c.) high ranking servant (usually of gentle birth), attendant upon a king, nobleman, etc., originally groom, probably from man + O.E. hengest horse, stallion, gelding, from P.Gmc. *hangistas (Cf. O.Fris …   Etymology dictionary

  • henchman — *follower, adherent, disciple, partisan, satellite, sectary …   New Dictionary of Synonyms

  • henchman — [n] follower abettor, accessory, accomplice, adherent, adjunct, aide, ally, appointee, apprentice, assistant, attendant, backer, backup*, bodyguard, coadjutant, coadjutor, cohort, collaborator, colleague, companion, deputy, fellow worker, flunky …   New thesaurus

  • henchman — ► NOUN 1) chiefly derogatory a faithful supporter or aide, especially one prepared to engage in underhand practices. 2) historical a squire or page attending a prince or noble. ORIGIN from Old English hengest «male horse» + MAN(Cf. ↑man), the… …   English terms dictionary

  • henchman — [hench′mən] n. pl. henchmen [hench′mən] [ME henxtman, hencheman < OE hengest, stallion (see HENGIST) + man: orig. sense prob. “horse attendant”] 1. Obs. a male attendant; page or squire 2. a trusted helper or follower ☆ 3. a political… …   English World dictionary

  • Henchman — The word henchman (Germanic irregular plural: hench men ) referred originally to one who attended on a horse, that is, a horse groom. Hence, like constable and marshal, also originally stable staff, henchman became the title of a (subordinate)… …   Wikipedia

  • henchman — [14] Early spellings such as hengestman and henxstman suggest that this word is a compound of Old English hengest ‘stallion’ and man ‘man’. There are chronological difficulties, for hengest seems to have gone out of general use in the 13th… …   The Hutchinson dictionary of word origins

  • henchman — UK [ˈhentʃmən] / US noun [countable] Word forms henchman : singular henchman plural henchmen UK [ˈhentʃmən] / US a supporter of a powerful person, especially one who is willing to behave in an immoral or violent way …   English dictionary

  • henchman — [14] Early spellings such as hengestman and henxstman suggest that this word is a compound of Old English hengest ‘stallion’ and man ‘man’. There are chronological difficulties, for hengest seems to have gone out of general use in the 13th… …   Word origins

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