What does minister mean?

Definitions for minister
ˈmɪn ə stərmin·is·ter

This dictionary definitions page includes all the possible meanings, example usage 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.


  1. minister

    A minister is a member of government who is in charge of a specific department or branch, such as education or health, and is responsible for formulating and implementing policies related to that area. Also, in a religious context, a minister is a member of the clergy who leads a congregation or performs religious ceremonies and duties.

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.

Surnames Frequency by Census Records


    According to the U.S. Census Bureau, Minister is ranked #109258 in terms of the most common surnames in America.

    The Minister surname appeared 162 times in the 2010 census and if you were to sample 100,000 people in the United States, approximately 0 would have the surname Minister.

    85.8% or 139 total occurrences were White.
    8.6% or 14 total occurrences were Black.
    4.9% or 8 total occurrences were of Hispanic origin.

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. John Kennedy:

    I think both Russia and Ukraine meddled in the 2016 election. I think it's been well documented in the Financial Times, in Politico, in The Economist, in the Washington Examiner, even on CBS, that the prime minister of Ukraine, the interior minister, the Ukrainian ambassador to the United States, the head of the Ukrainian Anti-Corruption League, all meddled in the election on social media and otherwise.

  2. Yukio Ishizuki:

    Given the discontent and grumbling within the conservative party, the position of (Prime Minister Theresa) May is becoming precarious.

  3. Donald Trump:

    I am optimistic that, working together, the prime minister and I can reach a fantastic deal that's good and even great for both of our countries, except that he's a very tough negotiator.

  4. Finance Minister Michel Sapin:

    The majority of these investments are meant for the industrial sector, which makes France the major player in Prime Minister Modi's 'Make in India' programme.

  5. Alon Davidi:

    Netanyahu is the best prime minister the state of Israel has ever had, and we will continue to support him.

Popularity rank by frequency of use


Translations for minister

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"minister." Definitions.net. STANDS4 LLC, 2024. Web. 13 Jul 2024. <https://www.definitions.net/definition/minister>.

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    the official who holds an office
    A ultimo
    B epidemic
    C incumbent
    D adscripted

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