Definition of suffragan in English:


Line breaks: suf|fra¦gan
Pronunciation: /ˈsʌfrəg(ə)n
(also suffragan bishop or bishop suffragan)


  • 1A bishop appointed to help a diocesan bishop: Ealdred became suffragan to Lyfing of Worcester
    More example sentences
    • All 44 diocesan bishops and 10 suffragans were asked to attend the meeting to discuss October's Windsor Report, a document produced to examine the crisis.
    • The archbishops, 42 diocesan bishops and 69 suffragan or full-time assistant bishops cost the church a grand total of £14.3m during 2003, the figures show.
    • She was the first woman to rise to the position of suffragan, or assistant, bishop at the Episcopal Diocese of Massachusetts - a position previously reserved for men.
  • 1.1A bishop in relation to his archbishop or metropolitan.
    More example sentences
    • In 1808, Pope Pius VII made Baltimore an archdiocese, with suffragan bishops in Boston, New York, Philadelphia, and Bardstown, Kentucky.


late Middle English: from Anglo-Norman French and Old French, representing medieval Latin suffraganeus 'assistant (bishop)', from Latin suffragium (see suffrage).

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