Definitions

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

  • n. Roman Catholic Church One who is ordained in the lowest of the former minor orders.
  • n. A church doorkeeper.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. The mouth of a river; an estuary.
  • n. One who keeps the door, especially the door of a church; a porter.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. The mouth of a river; an estuary.
  • n. One who keeps the door, especially the door of a church; a porter.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. In the early church and in the Roman Catholic Church, the doorkeeper of a church.
  • n. The porter of a monastery.
  • n. A mouth of a river.

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

  • n. the lowest of the minor Holy Orders in the unreformed Western Church but now suppressed by the Roman Catholic Church
  • n. someone who guards an entrance

Etymologies

Middle English hostiary, from Latin ōstiārius, doorkeeper, from ōstium, door, from ōs, mouth; see ōs- in Indo-European roots.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
Latin ostium door, entrance. See usher. (Wiktionary)

Examples

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