Definition of prelate in English:

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Pronunciation: /ˈprɛlət/


formal or historical
A bishop or other high ecclesiastical dignitary.
Example sentences
  • But in the 1893 campaign in Chicago, Moody was the first evangelical preacher that I know of who invited Roman Catholic prelates, priests, and bishops to share his platform.
  • The pictures from Saint Peter's Square on an unusually warm and bright day were sharp and colorful, the rows of scarlet-robed prelates encircling the pope's chair a strong visual sign of Catholic solidarity and order.
  • Only the king could appoint people to it and normally only princes of the blood (the most senior nobles), senior prelates and magnates were allowed to join.



Pronunciation: /prɪˈlatɪk/
Example sentences
  • It is also important to distinguish between a Shepherd's Cross and a bishop's crosier, which is simply a symbol of prelatic authority and jurisdiction.


Pronunciation: /prɪˈlatɪk(ə)l/
Example sentences
  • The goal is to lay out these two values-the ‘Miltonian’ and ‘prelatical’ commitments of ECUSA-and then ask if the Covenant is not a clearly effective way of granting these elements a constructive life together.
  • Visiting the great Galileo - in an Inquisition prison - did not destroy Milton's veneration for Italian science and learning but it deepened his hatred of prelatical licensing.


Middle English: from Old French prelat, from medieval Latin praelatus 'civil dignitary', past participle (used as a noun) of Latin praeferre 'carry before', also 'place before in esteem'.

Words that rhyme with prelate

appellate, Helot, zealot
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