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1. The oldest woman in a family (a grandmother or great-grandmother) who thus has the most seniority.

2. The head of a family in a matrilineal society

3. The ruler in a matriarchy.
The matriarch looked proudly over her great progeny, from her eldest daughter to her newest heir, her month-old great-granddaughter.
by Lorelili October 16, 2010
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