The word lady is a polite term for a woman, specifically the female equivalent to, or spouse of, a lord or gentleman, and in many contexts a term for any adult woman. Once relating specifically to women of high social class or status, over the last 300 years it has spread to embrace all adult women, though in some contexts may still be used to evoke a concept of "ladylike" standards of behaviour.
Read more about Lady: Etymology and Usage
Famous quotes containing the word lady:
“London Bridge is broken down,
Dance oer my lady lee,
London Bridge is broken down,
With a gay lady.
How shall we build it up again?
Dance oer my lady lee,”
—Unknown. London Bridge (l. 16)
“... it was not very unusual at Washington for a lady to take the arm of a gentleman, who was neither her husband, her father, nor her brother. This remarkable relaxation of American decorum has been probably introduced by the foreign legations.”
—Frances Trollope (17801863)
“A lady of what is commonly called an uncertain tempera phrase which being interpreted signifies a temper tolerably certain to make everybody more or less uncomfortable.”
—Charles Dickens (18121870)