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A majordomo is a person who speaks, makes arrangements, or takes charge for another. Typically, the term refers to the highest (major) person of a household (domūs or domicile) staff, who acts on behalf of the (often absent) owner of a (typically) large or significant residence. Similar terms include castellan, concierge, chamberlain, seneschal, Mayor of the Palace, maître d'hôtel, butler, valet and steward. The term also refers, more informally, to someone who oversees the day-to-day responsibilities of a business enterprise.
The origin is from maior domūs (Latin), and it was borrowed into English from Spanish "mayordomo" or obsolete Italian "maiordomo". Also found as French "majordome", modern Italian "maggiordomo", Portuguese and Galician "mordomo", in Romanian and Catalan "majordom".
The majordomo is responsible for the management of a household or business. Majordomos were common in Europe until the landed aristocracy weakened and no longer had the means to employ them.
Examples in fiction
Examples of fictional majordomos would be Alfred Pennyworth from the Batman mythos, Jonathan Quayle Higgins III from the 1980s television series Magnum, P.I., Bib Fortuna from Return of the Jedi, Carson from the ITV series Downton Abbey, and Joseph from the soap opera Dynasty.
In Les Miserables, Major Domo oversees proceedings at the wedding of Marius and Cosette, in the stage version, introducing M. and Mme. Thenardier to the wedding waltzers.
- Maurice Clavell Walter Slezak, in the comedy film, Come September (1961 film), not only plays the role of Rock Hudson's majordomo, but takes advantage of his employers absence to turn the luxurious Italian villa into resort hotel.
Another notable incarnation is 'Majordomo Executus', one of the major bosses of the original Molten Core Raid encounters in World of Warcraft, 'Majordomo' sits second only to the fire lord Ragnaros himself.
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