Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. Roman Catholic Church The position, rank, dignity, or term of a cardinal.
  • n. Roman Catholic Church The College of Cardinals.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. The dignity and ecclestiastic office of Roman Catholic cardinal.
  • n. Collective term for the cardinals.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. The office, rank, or dignity of a cardinal.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • To make a cardinal of; raise to the office of cardinal.
  • n. The office, rank, dignity, or incumbency of a cardinal. Also cardinalship.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. cardinals collectively

Etymologies

From Latin cardinalatus, from cardinalis ("cardinal"), itself the noun use of the adjective derived from cardo ("hinge, main point") + -alis ("-al"). (Wiktionary)

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