[hi-teer-uh] /hɪˈtɪər ə/

noun, plural hetaerae
[hi-teer-ee] /hɪˈtɪər i/ (Show IPA)
a highly cultured courtesan or concubine, especially in ancient Greece.
any woman who uses her beauty and charm to obtain wealth or social position.
noun (pl) -taerae (-ˈtɪəriː), -tairai (-ˈtaɪraɪ)
(esp in ancient Greece) a female prostitute, esp an educated courtesan

1820, “mistress,” from Medieval Latin hetaera, from Greek hetaira “female companion,” in Athens opposed to “lawful wife,” and thus embracing everything from “concubine” to “courtesan;” fem. of hetairos “comrade, companion,” from PIE *swet-aro-, suffixed form of root *s(w)e- (see idiom).


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