Definitions

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

  • n. Ecclesiastical An ankle-length garment with a close-fitting waist and sleeves, worn by the clergy and others assisting in church services.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. A long outer garment formerly worn by men and women, as well as by soldiers as part of their uniform.
  • n. A garment resembling a long frock coat worn by the clergy of certain churches when officiating, and by others as the usually outer garment.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. Any loose robe or outer coat, but particularly a military one.
  • n. A long clerical coat, buttoned over the breast and reaching to the feet, and confined at the waist by a broad sash called a circline.

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

  • n. a black garment reaching down to the ankles; worn by priests or choristers

Etymologies

French casaque, long coat, from Old French, perhaps from Italian casacca, from Persian kazhāgand, padded garment : kazh, raw silk + āgand, stuffed.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Middle French casaque ("cloak"). (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • I find thought that the cassock is as much a reminder to me of my call as a sign for others.

    AKMA’s Random Thoughts

  • All the niceties of ritual were observed -- the hand-candle, the attendants in cassock and ferraiolo -- and the choir sung unaccompanied, and also to the accompaniment of the organ and a violin.

    Solemn Pontifical Mass and Other Important Liturgical Events in New York

  • I noticed that his cassock was a little frayed at the sleeves and short in the skirt.

    Incubus

  • His cassock was a good one, and his hat, though dusty, shapely and new.

    The Isle of Unrest

  • a cassock was a mark for the insults and outrages of soldiers and

    The History of England, from the Accession of James II — Volume 3

  • Every one wore a kind of cassock of the brown coarse material; a few were girdled with belts of skin, having well-wrought metal buckles.

    Darkness and Dawn

  • First, a jokey panel drops down behind him, forcing a cheap laugh from the audience right in the middle of his lovely "dream" aria; later, as a novice priest, he must sing the long, impassioned church scene wearing a transparent black chiffon cassock over satin trousers.

    In 'Manon,' Best to Close Your Eyes

  • In terms of the ornaments of the liturgy, sometimes the altar is set up in a way that is untidy, such as crooked candles that could easily be straightened or unevenly spaced candlesticks that a few more minutes of preparation could rectify; unkempt vestments, altar linens, cassocks and surplices for servers are sometimes also in evidence, as are servers visibly wearing informal clothing beneath their cassock.

    Ars Celebrandi as it relates to the Usus Antiquior

  • His congregation heeded his advice, but Bould himself came out, clad in a cassock, to explain that the PCC's decision had not been put to the congregation and he did not know how many would go over to Rome.

    Church of England parish sings battle hymns as it plans move to Rome

  • In urban areas, the pews only fill when there's a popular church school, and pushy mums are sniffing round the vicar's cassock (dads generally opt out of this game).

    Britain's illiberal attitude to the church has driven me away

Comments

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  • The Roman cassock has 33 buttons.

    December 9, 2011