What does clergy mean?

Definitions for clergyˈklɜr dʒi

Here are all the possible meanings and translations of the word clergy.

Princeton's WordNet

  1. clergy(noun)

    in Christianity, clergymen collectively (as distinguished from the laity)


  1. clergy(Noun)

    Body of persons, such as ministers, priests and rabbis, who are trained and ordained for religious service.

Webster Dictionary

  1. Clergy(noun)

    the body of men set apart, by due ordination, to the service of God, in the Christian church, in distinction from the laity; in England, usually restricted to the ministers of the Established Church

  2. Clergy(noun)

    learning; also, a learned profession

  3. Clergy(noun)

    the privilege or benefit of clergy

  4. Origin: [OE. clergie, clergi, clerge, OF. clergie, F. clergie (fr. clerc clerc, fr. L. clericus priest) confused with OF. clergi, F. clerg, fr. LL. clericatus office of priest, monastic life, fr. L. clericus priest, LL. scholar, clerc. Both the Old French words meant clergy, in sense 1, the former having also sense 2. See Clerk.]


  1. Clergy

    Clergy are some of the formal leaders within certain religions. The roles and functions of clergy vary in different religious traditions but these usually involve presiding over specific rituals and teaching their religion's doctrines and practices. Some of the terms used for individual clergy are "cleric", "clergyman", "clergywoman", "clergyperson" and "churchman". In Christianity the specific names and roles of clergy vary by denomination and there is a wide range of formal and informal clergy positions, including deacons, priests, bishops, preachers, pastors, and ministers. In Shia Islam, a religious leader is often known as an imam or ayatollah. In Jewish tradition, a religious leader is often a rabbi or hazzan.

Chambers 20th Century Dictionary

  1. Clergy

    klėr′ji, n. the ministers of the Christian religion, as holders of an allotted office, in contradistinction to the laity.—adjs. Cler′gyable, Cler′giable, entitled to or admitting of the benefit of clergy.—ns. Cler′gyman, one of the clergy, a regularly ordained minister; Cler′gy-wom′an, a woman belonging to a clergyman's family.—adjs. Cler′ic, -al, belonging to the clergy: pertaining to a clerk.—ns. Cler′ic, a clergyman; Cler′icalism, undue influence of the clergy, sacerdotalism; Cler′icate, clerical position; Cleric′ity, state of being a clergyman; Cler′isy, the class of learned men, scholars.—Clergyman's sore throat, chronic pharyngitis.—Benefit of clergy, originally an exemption of clergymen, in certain cases, from criminal process before a secular judge, but later covering the first offence of all who could read.—Black clergy, in Russia, the regular or monastic, as distinct from the secular or parochial, clergy. [Fr. clergé—L.,—Gr. klērikos, from klēros, a lot, then the clergy.]

Editors Contribution

  1. clergy

    People that have the ability, attributes, experience, qualities, skills, tools and theological training who are approved by a form and structure of religion to lead a group of people through a religious organizational structure.

    Some examples of clergy are male, female and homosexual priests, rabbi, ministers, spiritual leader, spiritual advisor and pastors.

British National Corpus

  1. Nouns Frequency

    Rank popularity for the word 'clergy' in Nouns Frequency: #2469


  1. Chaldean Numerology

    The numerical value of clergy in Chaldean Numerology is: 8

  2. Pythagorean Numerology

    The numerical value of clergy in Pythagorean Numerology is: 7

Sample Sentences & Example Usage

  1. Troy Stevenson:

    They( clergy) work for Jesus, not Freedom Oklahoma.

  2. Benjamin Jowett:

    You must believe in God in spite of what the clergy say.

  3. Commissioner William Evans:

    His family's with him, the clergy has been here and ... let's pray for him.

  4. Ted Olson:

    I do not believe someone would force a member of the clergy to perform a marriage.

  5. Carl Sagan:

    A celibate clergy is an especially good idea, because it tends to suppress any hereditary propensity toward fanaticism.

Images & Illustrations of clergy

  1. clergyclergyclergy

Translations for clergy

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"clergy." Definitions.net. STANDS4 LLC, 2018. Web. 22 Feb. 2018. <https://www.definitions.net/definition/clergy>.

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