MATERFAMILIAS. A few days ago, Annalisa sent me the following from A. Word. A. Day:



noun: The female head of a family, household, tribe, etc.

From Latin materfamilias, from mater (mother) + familias, from familia (household), from famulus (servant, slave).

Paterfamilias is the masculine equivalent of the word.

“Equally, as materfamilias, she [Queen Elizabeth] will have time to devote to the motherless Prince William, and to groom him for kingship while his father reigns.”
Tunku Varadarajan; A New Queen Mum?; The Wall Street Journal (New York, NY); Apr 2, 2002.

“First we have Nora [Nina Poliakoff], materfamilias of the bizarre brood in whose home this absurdist mystery-farce takes place.”
K.C. Compton; CSF Opener is a Metaphor For Confusion; Santa Fe New Mexican; Oct 14, 1994.

Mary Jane is Materfamilias. Happy Mother’s Day!

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