A male person of a specified type.
This form has long been used to name a man from a given place (Frenchman, Cornishman), belonging to a certain group (clansman), or having some specified job or role (businessman, lifeboatman, nightwatchman, salesman), or possessing some specified quality (layman, madman). With changes to the role of women in society, many are being replaced by equivalent forms in -person (chairperson, layperson), or with other gender-neutral terms such as firefighter. (See also -woman and -manship.)
The ending also appears in terms for types of sailing ship, now historical, such as merchantman or Indiaman, which comes from the word man used for a ship.