What does laity mean?

Definitions for laity
ˈleɪ ɪ tilaity

This dictionary definitions page includes all the possible meanings, example usage and translations of the word laity.

Princeton's WordNet

  1. laity, temporaltynoun

    in Christianity, members of a religious community that do not have the priestly responsibilities of ordained clergy


  1. laitynoun

    people of a church who are not ordained clergy or clerics.

  2. laitynoun

    the common man or woman

  3. laitynoun

    the unlearned, untrained or ignorant as in The Layman's Guide to Basket Weaving

  4. Etymology: From laitas, from λαός

Samuel Johnson's Dictionary

  1. Laitynoun

    Etymology: λάος.

    An humble clergy is a very good one, and an humble laity too, since humility is a virtue that equally adorns every station of life. Jonathan Swift, Sentiments of a Ch. of Engl. Man.

    The more usual cause of this deprivation is a mere laity, or want of holy orders. John Ayliffe, Parergon.


  1. laity

    Laity refers to the members of a religious group who are not clergy or ordained ministers. They are considered ordinary followers or believers and do not hold any official or professional position within the religious organization. This term is used in many different religions including Christianity, Buddhism, and Hinduism.

Webster Dictionary

  1. Laityadjective

    the people, as distinguished from the clergy; the body of the people not in orders

  2. Laityadjective

    the state of a layman

  3. Laityadjective

    those who are not of a certain profession, as law or medicine, in distinction from those belonging to it

  4. Etymology: [See Lay, a.]


  1. Laity

    In religious organizations, the laity consists of all members who are not a part of the clergy, whether they are or are not members of religious institutes, for example a nun or lay brother. In Christian cultures, the term lay priest is sometimes used in the past to refer to a secular priest, a diocesan priest who is not a member of a religious institute. Terms such as lay priest, lay clergy and lay nun were also once used in Buddhist cultures to indicate ordained persons who continued to live in the wider community instead of retiring to a monastery. In the context of specialized professions, the term lay is often used to refer to those who are not members of that profession. The word lay derives from the Anglo-French lai.

Chambers 20th Century Dictionary

  1. Laity

    lā-′i-ti, n. the people as distinct from the clergy. [See Lay, adj.]

Surnames Frequency by Census Records

  1. LAITY

    According to the U.S. Census Bureau, Laity is ranked #52970 in terms of the most common surnames in America.

    The Laity surname appeared 391 times in the 2010 census and if you were to sample 100,000 people in the United States, approximately 0 would have the surname Laity.

    94.8% or 371 total occurrences were White.
    2% or 8 total occurrences were of Hispanic origin.
    1.5% or 6 total occurrences were Asian.
    1.2% or 5 total occurrences were of two or more races.

Anagrams for laity »

  1. Italy

  2. taily

How to pronounce laity?

How to say laity in sign language?


  1. Chaldean Numerology

    The numerical value of laity in Chaldean Numerology is: 1

  2. Pythagorean Numerology

    The numerical value of laity in Pythagorean Numerology is: 4

Examples of laity in a Sentence

  1. Francesco Cesareo:

    I don't see how that's going to satisfy the laity.

  2. George Bernard Shaw:

    All professions are conspiracies against the laity.

  3. John Selden:

    Humility is a virtue all preach, none practise, and yet everybody is content to hear. The master thinks it good doctrine for his servant, the laity for the clergy, and the clergy for the laity.

  4. Tom McCarthy:

    My biggest concern is that not only the church, but the laity, the parents will think, 'OK, this was a problem of the past. We'll lower our guard,' until we're certain that this problem has been dealt with completely, we have to remain vigilant. We have to push for reform, for change.

Popularity rank by frequency of use


Translations for laity

From our Multilingual Translation Dictionary

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"laity." Definitions.net. STANDS4 LLC, 2024. Web. 28 Feb. 2024. <https://www.definitions.net/definition/laity>.

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    cloth coverings wrapped around something (as a wound or a baby)
    • A. congius
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