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Line breaks: priest
Pronunciation: /priːst

Definition of priest in English:


1An ordained minister of the Catholic, Orthodox, or Anglican Church, authorized to perform certain rites and administer certain sacraments: the priest celebrated mass at a small altar off the north transept
More example sentences
  • After leaving Perth he was a priest at the Anglican Church of St Augustine at Bulli in New South Wales.
  • Ordained an Anglican priest, he did keep up with his era's intellectual currents.
  • Around about age 13 I got the idea that I ought to be a priest in the Anglican church.
clergyman, clergywoman, minister (of religion), cleric, ecclesiastic, pastor, parson, churchman, churchwoman, man/woman of the cloth, man/woman of God, father;
Scottish kirkman;
North American dominie
Australian informal josser
1.1A person who performs religious ceremonies and duties in a non-Christian religion: the plays were performed within the sacred area of Dionysus, in the presence of his priest
More example sentences
  • At the top were the Brahmans, priests of the sacrificial religion and intellectuals.
  • The Brahmanas are rituals and prayers to guide the priests in their duties.
  • For most indigenous religions, priests and priestesses are common.
2A mallet used to kill fish caught when angling.
[with allusion to the priest's function in performing the last rites]
Example sentences
  • If taking a fish for the pot then it should be killed quickly and cleanly with a priest or knife then bagged out of sight.
  • Finished coracles are also delivered complete with a handcrafted priest or knocker used to humanely kill caught fish as a reminder that you are purchasing a historical fishing craft rather than a recreational toy.
  • Other items that you will always need include a priest for despatching any fish that you intend to keep to eat.


[with object] formal Back to top  
Ordain to the priesthood: he was made deacon in 1990 and priested in 1994
More example sentences
  • As the church in Wales at that time did not allow women priests she had to wait until January 1997 to be priested in St Asaph's Cathedral.
  • I spoke about my vocation, which was originally about being a preacher of the Word, and how unexpected it was therefore, at the end of my deacon year, to find that being priested was such a special and moving event.
  • Former Suffragan Bishop of Southampton, the Rt Rev Jonathan Gledhill, ordained Cate as a deacon at Romsey Abbey in 2001 and the curate was priested the following year.


Old English prēost, of Germanic origin; related to Dutch priester, German Priester, based on ecclesiastical Latin presbyter 'elder' (see presbyter).



Example sentences
  • There is something profoundly priestlike about him.
  • Their signature compositions resemble stained-glass windows and often feature Gothic arches and gilded backdrops; the artists themselves frequently appear in saintly and priestlike poses.
  • Also priestlike was Guinness's deflection of attention from himself.

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