Definitions

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

  • n. An employee or assistant who serves in a wide range of capacities.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A person having many diverse activities or responsibilities.
  • n. A general servant.
  • n. A jack of all trades.
  • n. An individual employed to do all sorts of duties.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. A person employed to do all kinds of work or business; a person with many different responsibilities.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. One who does everything; specifically, one who is called upon or employed to do all kinds of work for another.

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

  • n. a servant employed to do a variety of jobs

Etymologies

Medieval Latin factōtum : Latin fac, imperative of facere, to do; see dhē- in Indo-European roots + Latin tōtum, everything, from neuter of tōtus, all; see teutā- in Indo-European roots.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From New Latin,  ("do everything"), from Latin fac, present singular imperative of faciō ("do, make") + tōtum ("everything"); attested in English from 1566. (Wiktionary)

Examples

Comments

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  • From the pamphlet Groatsworth of Wit: Shakespeare is "an absolute Johannes fac totum, who is in his owne conceit the onely Shake-scene in a countrey." Some elaboration here.

    December 10, 2006