Share this entry

pontifex Line breaks: pon¦ti|fex
Pronunciation: /ˈpɒntɪfɛks/

Definition of pontifex in English:

noun (plural pontifices pɒnˈtɪfɪsiːz)

(In ancient Rome) a member of the principal college of priests.
Example sentences
  • All this may look democratic, but in 300 he opposed the admission of plebeians to the two main priestly colleges (pontifices and augures) and on two occasions attempted to secure the election of an all-patrician college.
  • It took their priesthood, their pontifex, their pontiff, and gave it a whole new meaning, a whole new level.
  • Truly it points to Jesus as pontifex, mediator, broker, and priest uniting both God and the disciples.


Latin, from pons, pont- 'bridge' + -fex from facere 'make'.

Words that rhyme with pontifex

spinifex • Telex • triplex

Definition of pontifex in:

Share this entry


What do you find interesting about this word or phrase?

Comments that don't adhere to our Community Guidelines may be moderated or removed.

Get more from Oxford Dictionaries

Subscribe to remove adverts and access premium resources

Word of the day fortissimo
Pronunciation: fɔːˈtɪsɪməʊ
(especially as a direction) very loud or loudly