AskDefine | Define assistant

Dictionary Definition

assistant adj : of or relating to a person who is subordinate to another [syn: adjunct] n : a person who contributes to the fulfillment of a need or furtherance of an effort or purpose; "my invaluable assistant"; "they hired additional help to finish the work" [syn: helper, help, supporter]

User Contributed Dictionary



From assist



  1. A person who assists or helps someone else.
  2. (Brit.) sales assistant.
  3. A software tool that provides assistance in some task.


person who assists
  • Albanian: asistent, asistente
  • Dutch: assistent
  • Finnish: assistentti, apulainen, avustaja, aputyöntekijä
  • German: Assistent, Mitarbeiter, Helfer
  • Japanese: 助手 (joshu)
  • Kurdish: شاگرد
  • Polish: asystent
  • Russian: ассистент, ассистентка
  • Spanish: ayudante
  • Swedish: assistent
  • German: Assistent


  1. Having a subordinate or auxiliary position.


Related terms



  • lang=fr|/a.sis.tɑ̃/
  • SAMPA: /a.sis.tA~/

Verb form

  1. present participle of assister

Extensive Definition

see also personal assistant An assistant is a person or electronic tool who or that assists another person accomplish his or her goals. Some assistants are strictly based at one's place of employment, while others assist with personal, sometimes home-related tasks. In cases where the assistant is heavily relied upon, the assistant may be known as a right-hand man or yes-man.

Yes Man

The term yes man is typically used for an employee who agrees with every statement of his or her employer.. Some synonyms of yes man are flunky, stooge, and sycophant; all of which have pejorative connotations. Such a person may also be referred to as a lapdog.

Right Hand Man

Unlike yes man, the term right-hand man has positive connotations. Some assert that the term is based on the fact that most people are right-handed. It may also be based on the idea of a king having his adviser sit at his right side.
In Ancient Greece, soldiers typically fought in a formation called a phalanx, where co-operation between soldiers was vital. Each soldier carried his shield on his left side, while his right side was protected by the man standing to his right. A biblical explanation also exists; in the King James Version of the Bible, Jesus is said to be "at the right hand of the Father(God)."


See also

Synonyms, Antonyms and Related Words

acolyte, adjutant, agent, aid, aide, aide-de-camp, aider, ancilla, assistant professor, associate, associate professor, attendant, attorney, auxiliary, benefactor, best man, co-worker, coadjutant, coadjutor, coadjutress, coadjutrix, deputy, emeritus, employee, executive officer, factor, fall guy, flunky, girl Friday, help, helper, helpmate, helpmeet, henchman, hired hand, hired man, hireling, inferior, instructor, junior, lecturer, lieutenant, man Friday, mercenary, minion, myrmidon, paranymph, paraprofessional, patsy, pensioner, professor, professor emeritus, proxy, reader, retired professor, right-hand man, second, secondary, servant, sideman, stooge, striker, subordinate, subsidiary, supporting actor, supporting instrumentalist, tutor, underling, understrapper, visiting professor, worker, workfellow, yokemate
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