From Longman Dictionary of Contemporary Englishmastermas‧ter1 /ˈmɑːstə $ ˈmæstər/ ●●○ S3 W3 noun [countable] 1 skilled personGOOD AT someone who is very skilled at somethingmaster of Runyon was a master of the short story. a master of disguise Hitchcock was an acknowledged master of suspense.master at (doing) something She’s a master at manipulating people. a work of art by a true master2 → be a past master (at something)3 man with authorityPOWER old-fashioned a) a man who has control or authority over servants or workers → mistress You’ll have to ask the master’s permission. b) DHPthe male owner of a dog → mistress4 → be your own master5 → be master of your own fate/destiny6 originalCOPY a document, record etc from which copies are made I gave him the master to copy.7 → Master of Arts/Science/Education etc8 teacher a) British English old-fashionedSES a male teacher → headmaster, headmistress b) (also Master) a wise person whose ideas and words other people accept and follow a Zen master9 young boy (also Master) old-fashioned used when speaking or referring to a young boy How’s young Master Toby today?10 university official (also Master) the person who is in charge of some university colleges in the UK the Master of Trinity College, Cambridge11 captain old-fashionedPMNTTW someone who is in charge of a ship → grand master, old master, quizmaster
Examples from the Corpusmaster• Deaver was a master of his craft.• He was a master at economizing on his investments.• At one time, the French were the colonial masters of Vietnam.• He is master of the depths.• Maxwell's soul-singing style has been compared to that of such masters as Stevie Wonder and Marvin Gaye.• The upshot of the litigation was that the non-litigation costs, together with the litigation costs, were taxed by the taxing master.• Bill Ritchie is now the master of these techniques, but he learnt them originally from Lawrence.• Later that evening Heathcliff's servant Joseph arrived and asked to speak to the master.• They were waiting for their masters to carry them overseas to slavery.master at (doing) something• Long a master at making do, Margaret teaches me as much about food as I teach her.• It was the way she liked to work, and, watching him, she realised he was a master at it.• Mondell had a weakness for flattery and a less than athletic mind, and Roosevelt was a master at exploiting both.• To watch him interview these patients is to watch a master at work.• The taxpayers were the bursar and nine assistant masters at Malvern College.• Like a new lunar base, a baby must first master at least the arts of breathing and eating.• He's a past master at keeping his whereabouts secret, laying false trails.• They were masters at delayed gratification.