Roget's 21st Century Thesaurus, Third Edition Copyright © 2013 by the Philip Lief Group.

EXAMPLES FROM THE WEB FOR FAMILIARS

What astonished him was to hear her calling him by the name used only by his familiars.

"These are familiars of the Holy Office," he answered me, his tone very grave.

But none of them approached him closely, yearn as he might for welcome from them, his familiars.

One by one that rocky patch was absorbing family and familiars.

That was not much; many good seamen were familiars of the Skull and Spectacles.

The relationship between these two was a puzzle to their familiars.

His sphere is enlarged, he becomes one of the familiars of the Tuileries.

I asked one of my Indians if any of their familiars resembled him and how they were.

Witches have been known to have butterflies and moths as familiars.

And lastly, on horseback and in gorgeous apparel, the familiars of the Inquisition.

WORD ORIGIN

mid-14c., "intimate, very friendly, on a family footing," from Old French famelier, from Latin familiaris "domestic, of a household;" also "familiar, intimate, friendly," dissimilated from *familialis, from familia (see family). The sense gradually broadened. Of things, from late 15c. The noun meaning "demon, evil spirit that answers one's call" is from 1580s.