AskDefine | Define boss

Dictionary Definition

boss adj : exceptionally good; "a boss hand at carpentry"; "his brag cornfield" [syn: brag]


1 a person who exercises control over workers; "if you want to leave early you have to ask the foreman" [syn: foreman, chief, gaffer, honcho]
2 a person responsible for hiring workers; "the boss hired three more men for the new job" [syn: hirer]
3 a person who exercises control and makes decisions; "he is his own boss now"
4 a leader in a political party who controls votes and dictates appointments; "party bosses have a reputation for corruption" [syn: party boss, political boss]
5 a circular rounded projection or protuberance [syn: knob] v : raise in a relief; "embossed stationary" [syn: emboss, stamp]

User Contributed Dictionary



From Dutch baas a term of respect originally used to address an older relative. Later, in New Amsterdam, it began to mean a person in charge who is not a master.



  1. of excellent quality, first-rate


  1. A person in charge of a business or company.
    • Chat turned to whisper when the boss entered the conference room.
  2. A person who oversees and directs the work of others; a supervisor; someone who fires people.
    • My boss complains that I'm always late to work.
  3. A leader, the head of an organized group or team.
    • They named him boss because he had good leadership skills.
  4. The head of a political party in a given region or district.
    • He is the Republican boss in Kentucky.
  5. In the context of "mechanical": A protrusion, frequently a cylinder of material that extends beyond a hole.
  6. A knob or projection, usually at the intersection of ribs in a vault.
  7. a hassock or footrest
  8. the strengthened area at the centre of a shield to the hand grip, which is attached to the rear of the boss. The boss is frequently made of metal even when the remainder of the shield is of wood or leather
  9. a final enemy in a video game that is particularly challenging and must be beaten in order to progress onto another level, or complete the game


#:* 1916: All were waiting : uncle Charles, who sat far away in the shadow of the window, Dante and Mr Casey, who sat in the easy chairs at either side of the hearth, Stephen, seated on a chair between them, his feet resting on a toasting boss. - James Joyce, ''Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man (Macmillan Press Ltd, paperback, 36)


person in charge
leader, head of an organised team
head of a political party
(mechanical) a protrusion
(architecture) knob or protrusion
a hassock or footrest
centre of a shield


  1. To exercise authoritative control; to lord over; to boss around; to tell someone what to do, often repeatedly.
    • You aren't my father. You can't boss me around!.
  2. To decorate with bosses; to emboss.


to exercise authority

Extensive Definition

__NoTOC__ Boss may refer to:



  • Joseph Stalin (1878–1953), former leader of the Soviet Union
  • Richard J. Daley (1902–1976), former mayor of Chicago, Illinois, USA
    • Boss, an unauthorized biography of Daley by newspaper columnist Mike Royko
  • Boss Tweed (William M. Tweed, 1823–1878), notoriously corrupt 19th-century politician in New York City
  • Boss Shepherd (Alexander Robey Shepherd, 1835–1902), 19th-century politician in Washington, D.C.
  • Rafael Trujillo ("El Jefe", 1891–1961), dictator of the Dominican Republic



  • George Steinbrenner (born 1930), general partner and principal owner of the New York Yankees baseball team
  • Helmut Rahn ("Der Boss", 1929–2003), German football player
  • Jos Verstappen (born 1972), Dutch Formula One driver
  • Isaac Boss (born 1980), Irish rugby union player
  • Ray Traylor ("The Big Boss Man", 1962–2004), professional wrestler
    • The Boss, a wrestling gimmick used by Traylor
  • Andrew Reynolds (born 1978), pro skateboarder

Fictional characters

Persons with the surname Boss





  • Boss, a Scouse expression meaning cool or great, as in "That film was boss"
  • Boss (video games), a particularly powerful enemy or opponent in a video game

See also

  • Gaffer (boss)
boss in German: Boss
boss in Spanish: Padrón
boss in Finnish: Boss
boss in French: Boss (homonymie)
boss in Indonesian: Bos
boss in Italian: Boss
boss in Japanese: ボス
boss in Low German: Baas
boss in Russian: Босс
boss in Simple English: Boss
boss in Chinese: 老板

Synonyms, Antonyms and Related Words

A per se, Big Brother, OK, ace, ace-high, administrator, anaglyph, ascendant, at the head, auditor, bad, bang-up, bas-relief, big cheese, bilge, blain, bleb, blister, blob, boatswain, bonzer, bow, bubble, bulb, bulge, bulla, bully, bump, bunch, burl, but good, button, bwana, cacique, cahot, cameo, cameo glass, capital, cavo-rilievo, champion, chaperon, chase, chef, chief, chieftain, chine, church dignitary, clump, coarsen, cock, colophon, command, commander, commanding, comptroller, concavity, condyle, control, controller, controlling, convex, convexity, cool, corking, crackerjack, cut glass, dactylogram, dactylograph, dandy, dean, delicious, dent, dint, direct, director, dominant, dominate, domineer, dowel, ducky, ear, ecclesiarch, elder, emboss, embossment, employer, excrescence, fab, famous, fine, fine and dandy, fingerprint, first-rate, flange, flap, floor manager, floorman, floorwalker, footmark, footprint, footstep, foreman, fossil footprint, fugleman, gaffer, gall, ganger, gear, general, genius, glyph, glyptograph, gnarl, goodman, governing, governor, granulate, great, groovy, guru, handle, head, headman, heavy, hegemonic, hegemonistic, hierarch, high relief, higher-up, hill, himself, honcho, horripilate, hot, hump, hunch, hunky-dory, husband, ichnite, ichnolite, impress, impression, imprint, in ascendancy, in charge, in chief, in the ascendant, indent, indentation, indention, inspector, intaglio, intaglio rilevato, intaglio rilievo, jam-up, jog, joggle, just dandy, keen, keep in order, keynoter, kingpin, knob, knot, knur, knurl, laureate, leader, leading, liege, liege lord, lip, loop, lord, lord it over, lord paramount, low relief, lump, man higher up, manage, manager, managing director, marvy, mask, master, mean, medal, medallion, mole, monitor, mountain, neat, nevus, nifty, nobby, noncommissioned officer, nonpareil, nub, nubbin, nubble, okay, order about, out of sight, overlook, overlord, overman, oversee, overseeing, overseer, owner, pad, padrone, papilloma, paragon, paramount, paterfamilias, patriarch, patron, paw print, pawmark, peachy, peachy-keen, peg, pimple, plaquette, policy maker, predominant, predominate, prepollent, preponderant, preponderate, prepotent, president, prevalent, prexy, principal, print, proctor, prodigy, proprietor, pug, pugmark, quarterback, rabbi, raise, regnant, regulating, regulative, regulatory, reigning, relief, relievo, rib, ride herd on, ridge, ring, ringleader, ripping, rough, rough up, roughen, ruler, ruling, rum, run, sachem, sahib, scrumptious, sculptured glass, seal, seigneur, seignior, senior, shoulder, sigil, signet, sirdar, slap-up, slave driver, smashing, solid, something else, sovereign, spiffing, spiffy, spine, stamp, stand over, standard-bearer, star, starets, step, straw boss, stud, stunning, style, subforeman, super, superintend, superintendent, superior, superman, superstar, supervise, supervising, supervisor, supervisory, supreme, survey, surveyor, swell, tab, take care of, take charge, taskmaster, teacher, the greatest, the most, thumbmark, thumbprint, top, top dog, tough, tubercle, tubercule, verruca, vesicle, vestige, virtuoso, visitor, wale, wart, welt, wizard
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