Definitions for cicisbeo
This page provides all possible meanings and translations of the word cicisbeo
A knightly servant of a high-born lady.
A married woman's lover; a kept man.
a professed admirer of a married woman; a dangler about women
a knot of silk or ribbon attached to a fan, walking stick, etc
In 18th- and 19th-century Italy, the cicisbeo, Cavalier Servente or the French Chevalier Savante, was the professed gallant and lover of a married woman, who attended her at public entertainments, to church and other occasions and had privileged access to his mistress. The arrangement is comparable to the Spanish cortejo or estrecho and, to a lesser degree, to the French petit-maître. The exact etymology of the word is unknown; some evidence suggests it originally meant "in a whisper". Other accounts suggest it is an inversion of bel cece, which means "beautiful chick". According to OED, the first recorded usage of the term in English was found in a letter by Lady Mary Wortley Montagu dated 1718. The term appears in Italian in Giovanni Maria Muti's "Quaresimale Del Padre Maestro Fra Giovanni Maria Muti De Predicatori" of 1708.
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