Definitions

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

  • adj. Of or relating to priests or the priesthood; priestly.
  • adj. Of or relating to sacerdotalism.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • adj. Of or relating to priests or a high religious order; priestly.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • adj. Of or pertaining to priests, or to the order of priests; relating to the priesthood; priesty.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • Of or pertaining to priests or the priesthood; priestly: as, sacerdotal dignity; sacerdotal functions or garments; sacerdotal character.

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

  • adj. of or relating to a belief in sacerdotalism
  • adj. associated with the priesthood or priests

Etymologies

Middle English, from Old French, from Latin sacerdōtālis, from sacerdōs, sacerdōt-, priest; see sak- in Indo-European roots.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Latin sacerdōtālis ("priestly"). (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • There is in them also something which recalls, not only by citations, but still more by the very inspiration of the thought, that which we call the sacerdotal prayer of Christ.

    Life of St. Francis of Assisi

  • Their enumeration among abuses, in the second place, of the celibacy of the clergy, and the manner in which their priests marry and persuade others to marry, are verily matters worthy of astonishment, since they call sacerdotal celibacy an abuse, when that which is directly contrary, the violation of celibacy and the illicit transition to marriage, deserves to be called the worst abuse in priests.

    The Confutatio Pontificia

  • Comte had also no small sympathy with the Oriental theocracies, as he calls the sacerdotal castes, who indeed often deserved it by their early services to intellect and civilization; by the aid they gave to the establishment of regular government, the valuable though empirical knowledge they accumulated, and the height to which they helped to carry some of the useful arts.

    Auguste Comte and Positivism

  • And that city was also sacerdotal, that is to say, sanctuary of the tribe of

    The Travels of Sir John Mandeville

  • He acts not in virtue of any magical powers inherent in himself, either as an individual or as a member of any so-called sacerdotal caste.

    Religious Reality

  • The "sacerdotal" or "ministerial" priesthood, which is a manifestation of the hierarchy's Petrine charism of teaching, sanctifying, and governing authority, exists solely to serve and facilitate the Marian charism of all believers.

    Archive 2006-04-01

  • To associate its spiritual or "sacerdotal" function with its national one "is to be considered as ... a mis-growth of ignorance and oppression."

    Introduction: Irony and Clerisy

  • The poems always are spoken of as 'sacerdotal', ritualistic, without the slightest attempt to see whether this be true of all or of some alone.

    The Religions of India Handbooks on the History of Religions, Volume 1, Edited by Morris Jastrow

  • The origin of their name is involved in great difficulties, but the most satisfactory conjecture is that the Sadducees or Zadokites were originally identical with the sons of Zadok, and constituted what may be termed a kind of sacerdotal aristocracy, this Zadok being the priest who declared in favor of Solomon when Abiathar took the part of Adonijah.

    Smith's Bible Dictionary

  • As propinquity would have it, Muslims just the other day offered an example of what he would have burned holes his typewriter ribbon exposing as unnecessarily sacrosanct, "sacerdotal," and a candidate for ribald and deserved offensiveness.

    The Rule of Reason

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