Madam vs Madame
Madam and Madame are two words that appear to be same as far as their meanings are concerned. Strictly speaking there is some difference between their usages. The word ‘madam’ is generally used to refer to a mistress of a household. On the other hand the word ‘madame’ refers to a married French woman. This is the main difference between the usage of the two words, namely, madam and madame.
The word ‘madam’ has a sense of authority or rank attached to it. That is why it is often considered as a term used to address a woman who occupies a high rank or authority in an organization or in the society.
It is interesting to note that ‘madam’ is a very polite way of addressing any woman in general for that matter. Of course it is to be employed in the conversational style of use. In other words it can be said that the word ‘madam’ is a more respectful mode of addressing a woman. In British English the word is used to refer a precocious and an intelligent girl. Sometimes it is used to address a young woman too.
On the other hand the word ‘madame’ is used as a kind of title or form of address used of a French-speaking woman. The plural form of the word ‘madame’ is ‘mesdames’. In short it can be said that the word ‘madame’ is use as a corresponding term for the words ‘Mrs’ or ‘madam’.
Linguists consider that what the British refer to by the usage of the word ‘madam’ is actually referred to by the usage of ‘madame’ too in France. These minor differences between the two words ‘madam’ and ‘madame’ should be known thoroughly by the writer if he is to convey the exact purport of words and sentences to the reader.
Steve J Smith says
Which is used for the owner/manager of a brothel?
What is Madam?
The word ‘madam’ is actually derived from the French word ‘madame’, it is used to address the women in respectful and polite manner regardless of their marital status. Generally, madam is used for the older age women to pay respect towards them. This word is also used for female bosses or the women holding the high rank office as this word shows the sense of authority being possessed by the woman. For instance, when we write a formal letter to any authoritative person without knowing his/her gender, we write ‘Dear Madam/Sir’ in the salutation. When the word madam is used one doesn’t require to add name or surname of that specific women, as this terms is mostly used to pay respect to those woman, whose names aren’t known. In British English, word madam is also used for the conceited or bossy girl or young woman other than the older woman. Other than all these meanings, the word ‘madam’ is also used for the woman who runs a brothel.
From: Difference Wiki