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

  • n. A person of slavish or unquestioning obedience; a lackey.
  • n. One who does menial or trivial work; a drudge.
  • n. A liveried manservant.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A sycophant; a servant or hanger-on who is kept for their loyalty or muscle rather than their intellect.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. A contemptuous name for a liveried servant or a footman.
  • n. One who is obsequious or cringing; a snob.
  • n. One easily deceived in buying stocks; an inexperienced and unwary jobber.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. A male servant in livery: used in contempt.
  • n. Hence One who is mean and base-spirited; a cringing flatterer and servile imitator of those above him in rank or position; a toady; a snob.
  • n. In the United States, among stock-brokers, a person who, from inexperience, makes bad investments or loses his money.
  • n. A cabin waiter on a passenger-vessel.

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

  • n. a male servant (especially a footman)
  • n. a person of unquestioning obedience


Scots, perhaps from flanker, an attendant at one's flank.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)



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