Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English homepage

Date: 1600-1700
Language: Latin
Origin: praesidere 'to sit in front of, guard, preside over', from sedere 'to sit'

preside

verb
     
preā€§side [intransitive]
to be in charge of a formal event, organization, ceremony etc:
I shall be pleased to preside at your meetings.
Mr Justice Waller, presiding judge for the north east

preside over something

phrasal verb
1 to be in a position of authority at a time when important things are happening:
The government seemed to be presiding over large-scale unemployment.
2 to be the head of a company or organization:
Finch presided over the company for 30 years.
3 to be in charge of a meeting or activity:
The chairman will preside over an audience of architects and developers.

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