Definitions

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

  • n. A sectarian.
  • n. A dissenter from an established church, especially a Protestant nonconformist.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A sectarian.
  • n. A Protestant dissenter or nonconformist.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. A sectarian; a member or adherent of a sect; a follower or disciple of some particular teacher in philosophy or religion; one who separates from an established church; a dissenter.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. A member of a particular sect, school, party, or profession.
  • n. Specifically
  • n. A member or an adherent of a sect in religion; a sectarian: often used opprobriously by those who regard as mere sects all bodies of Christians outside of their own.
  • n. Synonyms Dissenter, Schismatic, etc. See heretic.
  • Sectarian.

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

  • n. a member of a sect

Etymologies

Medieval Latin sectārius, from Latin secta, sect; see sect.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
Either from the French sectaire or directly from its etymon, the Medieval Latin sectārius, from secta ("sect"). Cognates include the Italian settario and the Portuguese and Spanish sectario. (Wiktionary)

Examples

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  • "'... if an Italian and a papist would have been the ideal candidate for a murderer, then the daughter of a sectary, of loose morals and a fiery temper, would have been an adequate replacement.'"
    —Iain Pears, An Instance of the Fingerpost (New York: Riverhead Books, 1998), 134

    October 7, 2008