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A steward or majordomo ( Latin magister / Prefect curiae , English Lord High Steward , Spanish Mayordomo del Rey ) was from the Middle Ages to the 19th century at European courts one of the first court officials . He was responsible for the management of the housekeeping and the service to the person of the prince . In the 15th century, the office of the Hofmeister gradually gained the importance of a state office, and the Hofmeister developed almost the effectiveness of a house and cabinet minister at the German royal courts .

The oldest court masters in Germany were monastic economic officials who, as adlates to the abbots , took care of secular management.

Until the 19th century, private tutors and administrators of large estates were also referred to as court masters .


In the Habsburg Monarchy the equivalent title was Obersthofmeister .


In the Russian Empire there were two titles at court until 1917, Hofmeister ( Russian Gofmeister ) and Oberhofmeister (Russian Ober-gofmeister ). According to the ranking table, they corresponded to the ranking categories K3 and K2.


Web links

Wiktionary: Hofmeister  - explanations of meanings, word origins, synonyms, translations