from The Century Dictionary.
- noun Same as
from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.
- noun the lowest of the minor Holy Orders in the unreformed Western Church but now suppressed by the Roman Catholic Church
Sorry, no etymologies found.
So also my mother brought to certain oratories, erected in the memory of the saints, offerings of porridge, bread, and wine -- as had been her custom in Africa -- and she was forbidden to do so by the doorkeeper [ostiarius].
In the vestibule, or in an apartment opening upon it, the porter, _ostiarius_, usually had his seat.
Theoretically, the actual ringing of the bells should be performed by the ostiarius and in the conferring of this minor order the cleric is given a bell to ring, but for centuries past his functions have everywhere become obsolete, and lay bell-ringers have been almost exclusively employed.
In the Roman period all houses of the better class had an ostiarius, or ostiary, whose duties were considered very inferior.
But the pope may delegate an ordinary priest to ordain a subdeacon, lector, exorcist, acolyte, or ostiarius.
Thus, for example, from the earliest times we meet in them all the hierarchical grades from the door-keeper (ostiarius) and lector up to the pope (see ORDERS, HOLY).
 Suetonius says (_de Rhet_. 3) of L. Voltacilius Pilutus, one of the teachers of Pompeius, Servisse dicitur atque etiam ostiarius vetere more in catena fuisse.
IX, 133) enumerates the orders of the clergy as ostiarius, fossorius, lector, etc.