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The German word Burgermeister often spelled in English as Burgomaster or Burgomeister means master of the citizens.

A Burgermeister is chairman of the executive council (or cabinet) in many towns and cities in Germany. In France, the person is called a mairie. In the Netherlands the person in called the burgermeester. The title is usually translated into English as Mayor. A mayor is not quite the same as the Burgermeister.

Municipal government

  • Bürgermeister, is used in Germany and Austria. It was used in Switzerland until the mid-19th century. In Switzerland now various names are used instead, such as Gemeindepräsident, Stadtpräsident, Gemeindeammann, and Stadtammann.
  • In city-states there can be more than one Bürgermeister. The senior one, equivalent to the Minister-President has an extra title
    • Regierender Bürgermeister ('Governing Mayor') in Berlin
    • Erster Bürgermeister (literally 'First Mayor') in Hamburg
    • Bürgermeister und Präsident des Senats ('Mayor and President of the Senate') in Bremen
  • Many large cities also have more than one Bürgermeister, the senior is usually called the Oberbürgermeister or Lord Mayor.

Ober- is put in front of many title to show that it is higher than another, especially in military.

Historical title

  • Präsidierender Bürgermeister ('Presiding Bürgermeister') is a name sometimes seen in old documents and books.

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