1. A married woman or a widow, especially a mother of dignity, mature age, and established social position.
2. A woman who acts as a supervisor or monitor in a public institution, such as a school, hospital, or prison.
[Middle English matrone, from Old French, from Latin mātrōna, from māter, mātr-, mother; see māter- in the Appendix of Indo-European roots.]
matron·ly adv. & adj.
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2019 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
Indo-European & Semitic Roots Appendices
Thousands of entries in the dictionary include etymologies that trace their origins back to reconstructed proto-languages. You can obtain more information about these forms in our online appendices:
The Indo-European appendix covers nearly half of the Indo-European roots that have left their mark on English words. A more complete treatment of Indo-European roots and the English words derived from them is available in our Dictionary of Indo-European Roots.