Also found in: Thesaurus, Encyclopedia, Wikipedia.


1. A woman who rules a family, clan, or tribe.
2. A woman who dominates a group or an activity.
3. A highly respected woman who is a mother.

ma′tri·ar′chal (-är′kəl), ma′tri·ar′chic (-är′kĭk) adj.
ma′tri·ar′chal·ism n.
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Adj.1.matriarchic - (of societies or families) having a female as the family head or having descent traced through the female line
matriarchal - characteristic of a matriarchy
References in periodicals archive ?
Alberuni's amazement at the practice of consulting wives by Punjab's men is often quoted as an evidence of thinly disguised matriarchal norms, carry-over from the matriarchic past.
One subspecies of the red junglefowl (Gallus gallus gallus) suffices as the matriarchic ancestor of all domestic breeds.
Some matriarchic aspects of the social structure of the southern Tetun of Middle Timor.