Emeritus ( //; plural emeriti; abbreviation emer.) is a post-positive adjective used to designate a retired professor, bishop, or other professional. The female equivalent, emerita (/ɨˈmɛrɨtə/), is also sometimes used, but phrases such as professor emerita are not in proper usage according to Latin grammar rules.
In many cases the term is conferred automatically upon all persons who retire at a given rank. This is the usual case for retiredprofessors. In other cases, it is used when a person of importance in a given profession retires or hands over the position so that his former rank can still be used in his title.
In the United States, the word is used either as a postpositional adjective (e.g., "professor emeritus"), or as a preposition adjective (e.g., "emeritus professor"). There is a third usage, although not employed as often, in which the word follows a full title (e.g., professor of medicine, emeritus.)
It is also commonly used in business and non-profit organizations to denote perpetual status of the founder of an organization or individuals who moved the organization to new heights as a former key member on the board of directors (e.g., chairman emeritus; director emeritus; president of the board emeritus.)
In the United Kingdom and most other parts of the world, the term 'emeritus professor' is given only to a person who has already had full professorial status before he or she retired. Those with Ph.D.s or other higher degrees would not be entitled to call themselves an 'emeritus professor' upon retirement. The term "Professor Emeritus" is also recognised in the UK. The word is capitalized when it forms part of a title which is capitalized.. The word is capitalized when it joins another capitalized word.
Emereri is a compound of the prefix e- (a variant of ex-) meaning "out of" or "from" and merēre meaning "earn." The past participle ofemeritus is emereri meaning to "earn one's discharge by service." Emeritus does not necessarily indicate that the person is retired from all the duties of her/his previous positions; he/she may continue to exercise some of them.