What does minister mean?

Definitions for minister
ˈmɪn ə stərmin·is·ter

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

Princeton's WordNet

  1. curate, minister of religion, minister, parson, pastor, rectornoun

    a person authorized to conduct religious worship

    "clergymen are usually called ministers in Protestant churches"

  2. minister, government ministernoun

    a person appointed to a high office in the government

    "Minister of Finance"

  3. minister, diplomatic ministernoun

    a diplomat representing one government to another; ranks below ambassador

  4. ministerverb

    the job of a head of a government department

  5. ministerverb

    attend to the wants and needs of others

    "I have to minister to my mother all the time"

  6. ministerverb

    work as a minister

    "She is ministering in an old parish"


  1. ministernoun

    A person who is trained to perform religious ceremonies at a Protestant church.

    The minister said a prayer on behalf of the entire congregation.

  2. ministernoun

    A politician who heads a ministry (national or regional government department for public service).

    He was newly appointed to be Minister of the Interior.

  3. ministernoun

    At a diplomacy, the rank of diplomat directly below ambassador

  4. ministernoun

    Someone who serves others.

  5. ministerverb

    To attend to; to tend.

    A newspaper headline: Couple leaves business world to minister to inner-city children

  6. Etymology: From ministre, from ministre, from minister, from minor + -ter; see minor.

Samuel Johnson's Dictionary

  1. MINISTERnoun

    Etymology: minister, Latin; ministre, Fr.

    You, whom virtue hath made the princess of felicity, be not the minister of ruin. Philip Sidney, b. ii.

    Rumble thy belly full; spit fire, spout rain,
    Nor rain, wind, thunder, fire, are my daughters;
    I tax not you, you elements, with unkindness:
    But yet I call you servile ministers,
    That have with two pernicious daughters join’d
    Your high-engender’d battles, ’gainst a head
    So old and white as this. William Shakespeare, King Lear.

    Th’ infernal minister advanc’d,
    Seiz’d the due victim. John Dryden, Theodore and Honoria.

    Other spirits govern’d by the will,
    Shoot through their tracks, and distant muscles fill;
    This sovereign, by his arbitrary nod,
    Restrains or sends his ministers abroad. Richard Blackmore.

    Kings must be answerable to God, but the ministers to kings, whose eyes, ears, and hands they are, must be answerable to God and man. Francis Bacon.

    Epaphras, a faithful minister of Christ. 1 Col. i. 7.

    The ministers are always preaching, and the governours putting forth edicts against dancing and gaming. Addison.

    The ministers of the gospel are especially required to shine as lights in the world, because the distinction of their station renders their conduct more observable; and the presumption of their knowledge, and the dignity of their office, gives a peculiar force and authority to their example. John Rogers.

    If wrongfully
    Let God revenge; for I may never lift
    An angry arm against his minister. William Shakespeare, Rich. II.

  2. To Ministerverb

    To give; to supply; to afford.

    Etymology: ministro, Latin.

    All the customs of the Irish would minister occasion of a most ample discourse of the original and antiquity of that people. Edmund Spenser, on Ireland.

    Now he that ministereth seed to the sower, both minister bread for your food and multiply your seed sown. 2 Cor. ix.

    The wounded patient bears
    The artist’s hand that ministers the cure. Thomas Otway, Orphan.

  3. To Ministerverb

    Certain of them had the charge of the ministering vessels, to bring them in and out by tale. 1 Chron. ix. 28.

    They which minister about holy things, live of the things of the temple. 1 Cor. ix. 13.

    At table Eve
    Minister’d naked, and their flowing cups
    With pleasant liquors crown’d. John Milton, Par. Lost, b. v.

    Can’st thou not minister to a mind diseas’d,
    Pluck from the memory a rooted sorrow,
    Raze out the written troubles of the brain? William Shakespeare, Macb.

    Others ministered unto him of their substance. Luke viii. 3.

    He who has a soul wholly void of gratitude, should set his soul to learn of his body; for all the parts of that minister to one another. Robert South, Sermons.

    There is no truth which a man may more evidently make out than the existence of a God; yet he that shall content himself with things as they minister to us pleasures and passions, and not make enquiry a little farther into their causes and ends, may live long without any notion of such a being. John Locke.

    Those good men, who take such pleasure in relieving the miserable for Christ’s sake, would not have been less forward to minister unto Christ himself. Francis Atterbury.

    Fasting is not absolutely good, but relatively, and as it ministers to other virtues. George Smalridge, Sermons.

    Whether prophesy, let us prophesy according to the proportion of faith; or ministry, let us wait on our ministring. Rom. xii. 7.

Webster Dictionary

  1. Ministernoun

    a servant; a subordinate; an officer or assistant of inferior rank; hence, an agent, an instrument

  2. Ministernoun

    an officer of justice

  3. Ministernoun

    one to whom the sovereign or executive head of a government intrusts the management of affairs of state, or some department of such affairs

  4. Ministernoun

    a representative of a government, sent to the court, or seat of government, of a foreign nation to transact diplomatic business

  5. Ministernoun

    one who serves at the altar; one who performs sacerdotal duties; the pastor of a church duly authorized or licensed to preach the gospel and administer the sacraments

  6. Ministernoun

    to furnish or apply; to afford; to supply; to administer

  7. Ministerverb

    to act as a servant, attendant, or agent; to attend and serve; to perform service in any office, sacred or secular

  8. Ministerverb

    to supply or to things needful; esp., to supply consolation or remedies

  9. Etymology: [OE. ministren, OF. ministrer, fr. L. ministrare. See Minister, n.]


  1. Minister

    A minister is a politician who holds significant public office in a national or regional government, making and implementing decisions on policies in conjunction with the other ministers. Some ministers are more senior than others, and are usually members of the government's cabinet. In some countries the head of government is designated the "prime minister". In some countries and territories, including Hong Kong, the Philippines, the UK, and the US, holders of some posts equivalent to ministries are called secretaries of state, sometimes referred to simply as secretaries. The term "minister" is also used in diplomacy with the quite different meaning of second-level diplomats. Another use, again quite distinct, is in religion, where some Christian denominations have a low-ranking office of "minister". This is distinct from a government minister with responsibility for religion, such as the Israeli Minister of Religious Services.

Chambers 20th Century Dictionary

  1. Minister

    min′is-tėr, n. a servant: one who serves at the altar: a clergyman: one transacting business for another: the responsible head of a department of state affairs: the representative of a government at a foreign court.—v.i. to act as a servant: to perform duties: to supply or do things needful.—v.t. to furnish:—pr.p. min′istering; pa.p. min′istered.adj. Ministē′rial, pertaining to the work of a servant: acting under superior authority: pertaining to the office of a minister: clerical: executive.—n. Ministē′rialist, one who supports ministers or the government in office.—adv. Ministē′rially.—adj. Min′istering, attending and serving.—n. Ministē′rium, the body of the ordained ministers in a district.—adj. Min′istrant, administering: attendant.—n. Ministrā′tion, the act of ministering or performing service: office or service of a minister.—adj. Min′istrātive, serving to aid or assist: ministering.—ns. Min′istress, a female minister; Min′istry, act of ministering: service: office or duties of a minister: the clergy: the clerical profession: the body of ministers who manage the business of the country. [L.,—minor, less.]

Dictionary of Nautical Terms

  1. minister

    A minister, though termed plenipotentiary, has no power to grant protection to vessels or cargoes otherwise subject to the operations and laws of hostilities.

Military Dictionary and Gazetteer

  1. minister

    Is one who acts not by any inherent authority of his own, but under another. Thus, in England all ministers act under a supreme authority, which is vested in the sovereign, lords, and commons, to whom they are responsible. In military matters, there is not only a war minister, but a secretary at war, who likewise acts conjointly with the secretary of state. All dispatches and papers of consequence relating to the army must first pass through the secretary of state, and the war minister, before they are laid before Parliament, or otherwise acted upon by the secretary at war. The common arrangements of corps, directions with respect to marching, are transmitted to the secretary at war, and to the quartermaster-general’s office, without previously passing through the secretary of state, or war minister. See Secretary of War.

Matched Categories

British National Corpus

  1. Spoken Corpus Frequency

    Rank popularity for the word 'minister' in Spoken Corpus Frequency: #344

  2. Written Corpus Frequency

    Rank popularity for the word 'minister' in Written Corpus Frequency: #1286

  3. Nouns Frequency

    Rank popularity for the word 'minister' in Nouns Frequency: #79

Anagrams for minister »

  1. interims

  2. misinter

How to pronounce minister?

How to say minister in sign language?


  1. Chaldean Numerology

    The numerical value of minister in Chaldean Numerology is: 7

  2. Pythagorean Numerology

    The numerical value of minister in Pythagorean Numerology is: 8

Examples of minister in a Sentence

  1. Yasuo Fukuda:

    I think one should not do something provocative toward international opinion at this juncture, and I think that Prime Minister Abe is thinking quite cautiously about whether to go to Yasukuni Shrine.

  2. Ariel Henry:

    My fellow Haitians in Haiti and in the diaspora, it is an honor for me to address you as your prime minister. I am calling for all of us to unite and to work together to stop the nation from descending into the abyss, today, it is our responsibility as leaders to work together to faces our challenges. I know some people are scared and have questions about who is leading the country. We weren't ready for recent events, but I can assure you that in a very short period of time I will unveil a new coalition government. This government will lead the country for a short period of time until we can hold better elections.

  3. President Trump:

    I thought that the Prime Minister's statement that it was absurd... was nasty, respect has to be shown to President Trump.

  4. State John Kerry on Tuesday:

    I will be meeting with Prime Minister Netanyahu either in Germany or in the region.

  5. Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan:

    We do not need to be invested in four airline businesses, (Public Enterprises Minister) and I have agreed to explore the possible merger of SAA and SA Express, under a strengthened board, with a view to engaging with a potential minority equity partner, and to create a bigger and more operationally efficient airline.

Popularity rank by frequency of use


Translations for minister

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