Definition of honorary in English:

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Pronunciation: /ˈɒn(ə)(rə)ri/


1Conferred as an honour, without the usual requirements or functions: an honorary doctorate
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  • During his visit to Ireland, Peck was conferred with an honorary doctorate in literature by the National University of Ireland in April 2000.
  • Mysore University had conferred an honorary doctorate on him.
  • Mr Prodi will be conferred with an honorary doctorate at a special ceremony in the University of Limerick in the afternoon.
titular, nominal, in name only, in title only, unofficial, token, so-called;
Latin honoris causa, ex officio
1.1(Of a person) holding an honorary title or position: an honorary fellow of the Royal College of Surgeons
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  • He was also elected to honorary positions such as honorary president of the Janos Bolyai Mathematical Society and the John von Neumann Society for Computer Science.
  • He was given the title of honorary physician to the Queen in 1967 for his public health work in Lancashire and for advising the Ministry of Health.
  • The writer is honorary senior research fellow in sociology and modern Korea at Leeds University.
2British (Of an office or its holder) unpaid: Honorary Secretary of the Association
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  • The UK ambassador to Thailand will represent Britain at commemorative events on Phi Phi island and Britain's honorary consul is attending a ceremony on Phuket.
  • ‘No one could ever have imagined this horror,’ says Mike Wilson, Britain's first honorary consul on the island.
  • He was subsequently invited to become the country's honorary consul in Sheffield, where there is a large Polish community.
unpaid, unsalaried, without pay, without payment, for nothing;
voluntary, volunteer, unrewarded;
Law  pro bono (publico)


Early 17th century: from Latin honorarius, from honor 'honour'.

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