As concubines are rare these days (and bastardry ignored), I a wondering if there is symmetry in names of male roles in relationships involving concubines or mistresses as there is with wives, or if it is like the classic Miss/Mrs. vs. Mr.

  • 8
    A man with a wife is a husband, a man with a concubine is a king ;^)
    – J.R.
    Apr 25, 2015 at 21:51
  • 3
    In the bad old days, a man with a concubine was very often a husband, too.
    – Sven Yargs
    Apr 26, 2015 at 4:05
  • 1
    I think the word is "happy".
    – Omegacron
    Mar 6, 2019 at 16:30

5 Answers 5



  • the man in authority, such as the head of a household, the employer of servants, or the owner of slaves oR animals.


  • a woman who cohabits with a man to whom she is not married, esp. one regarded as socially or sexually subservient; mistress.

From The Designation of the Individual: Expressive Usage in Biblical Narrative

... her husband is "master" from the viewpoint of status. In this sense, "concubine" contrasts with "woman" in the sense of "wife". However, from the point of view of personal relationship, "master" and "concubine" are "husband" and "wife".

Ngram: master and concubine


There are several quotes that describe a man keeping a mistress, as her protector.

Did a mistress wait for her protector to come to her, or did ...

"Unmasking the Duke's Mistress" By Margaret McPhee

A mistress should never be foolish enough to fall in love with her protector, nor trust him ...

"For Desire Alone" (Mistress Matchmaker #2) by Jess Michaels (Goodreads Author)

  • +1 for finding actual quotes to back up the word choice.
    – IQAndreas
    Apr 3, 2016 at 21:06

You might consider,


Rare A man that keeps a concubine.



n. Concubinage

Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary

In some cases, concubinage is monogamous; that is, concubine and concubinator live together in a quasi-marriage [...]

The Oxford Encyclopedia of Women


A person with whom someone is having a romantic or sexual relationship and especially a secret or improper relationship.


It is well settled, by the decisions cited in the prevailing opinion in this case, that a paramour and concubine who succeed in concealing their cohabiting as man and wife are not guilty of living in open concubinage. Southern Reporter

...and dark cull(y)

A married man with a secret mistress.

A Dictionary of Slang and Colloquial English

A married man that keeps a mistress, whom he visits only at night, for fear of discovery.

Grose 1811 Dictionary


cully n.1 (also cullee, culley) [? as ‘fool’ there may be links to Ital. coglione, a dolt, but as ‘man’ it may well come from the Sp. Gypsy chulai or Turkish Gypsy khulai, both meaning man, or poss. fig. use of French couillon, testicles]

(Oxford Reference)

  • I don't think "paramour" works here. The relationship is neither secret nor improper, and from what I understand, concubines were more "practical" than "romantic".
    – IQAndreas
    Apr 3, 2016 at 21:03

I would suggest the sometimes derogatory but modern-day term sugar daddy

Sugar daddy is a slang term for a man who offers support (typically financial and material) to a younger companion, e.g. a kept woman


Such a man could be referred to as a lothario.

  • which one? the guy with the mistress, or the concubine? I would assume mistress as the concubine's children can inherit.
    – hildred
    Apr 25, 2015 at 21:38
  • Lothario would be most appropriate to the man with a mistress, although it would not be inappropriate to a man with a concubine (depending on context).
    – scottb
    Apr 25, 2015 at 21:43
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    It should be spelled with a capital L - Lothario, since it refers to the character in Nicholas Rowe's play The Fair Penitent (1703). But I am not sure I agree that any man who cohabits with a woman who is not his wife might be termed a Lothario. It suggests a 'libertine, a deceiver or a rake* (OED) and it seems quite excessive to refer to the many millions of men in western society who currently live with female partners in unmarried, though otherwise monogamous relationships, as Lotharios.
    – WS2
    Apr 25, 2015 at 21:46
  • Lothario is not a perfect counterpart to either mistress or concubine. The former is a name given to a pattern of behavior. The latter are terms that are given to a role.
    – scottb
    Apr 25, 2015 at 21:48
  • @scottb The OED defines a concubine as a woman who lives with a man without being his wife - a kept mistress. Your comment seems to suggest they are not synonymous.
    – WS2
    Apr 25, 2015 at 21:49

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