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

  • n. An administrative part of a diocese that has its own church in the Anglican, Roman Catholic, and some other churches.
  • n. The members of such a parish; a religious community attending one church.
  • n. A political subdivision of a British county, usually corresponding in boundaries to an original ecclesiastical parish.
  • n. An administrative subdivision in Louisiana that corresponds to a county in other U.S. states.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. In the Anglican, Eastern Orthodox and Catholic Church or certain civil government entities such as the state of Louisiana, an administrative part of a diocese that has its own church.
  • n. The community attending that church; the members of the parish.
  • n. A civil subdivision of a British county, often corresponding to an earlier ecclesiastical parish.
  • n. An administrative subdivision in Louisiana that is equivalent to a county in other U.S. states.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • adj. Of or pertaining to a parish; parochial; ; maintained by the parish.
  • n.
  • n. That circuit of ground committed to the charge of one parson or vicar, or other minister having cure of souls therein.
  • n. The same district, constituting a civil jurisdiction, with its own officers and regulations, as respects the poor, taxes, etc.
  • n. An ecclesiastical society, usually not bounded by territorial limits, but composed of those persons who choose to unite under the charge of a particular priest, clergyman, or minister; also, loosely, the territory in which the members of a congregation live.
  • n. In Louisiana, a civil division corresponding to a county in other States.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. In the early Christian ch., a district placed under the superintendence of a bishop; a diocese.
  • n. In Great Britain and Ireland, a district or territorial division.
  • n. Now, also, a civil division of the country for purposes of local self-government, such as the legal care of the poor, education, the regulation of sanitary matters, etc.: it is in general conterminous with the ecclesiastical parish. At present there are in England and Wales about 13,000 ecclesiastical parishes, and about 15,000 civil parishes, of which not more than 10,000 coincide with the ecclesiastical districts bearing the same name. In Scotland in 1888 there were 934 civil parishes or parishes proper (quoad omnia) and 386 parishes quoad sacra (that is, parishes in respect of things ecclesiastical only). There are several other minor classes of parishes, as the land-tax and Burial Act parishes in England, and the burghal and extra-burghal parishes in Scotland.
  • n. In the United States: In colonial times, in some of the southern colonies, a subdivision of the county for purposes of local government.
  • n. One of the 58 territorial divisions of Louisiana, corresponding to the county in other States.
  • n. A local church or congregation and the geographical limits, generally imperfectly defined, within which its local work is mainly confined.
  • n. An ecclesiastical society, not bounded by territorial limits, nor confined in its personnel to communicants, but composed of all those who choose to unite in maintaining Christian work and worship in a particular local church: used in this sense chiefly in New England.
  • n. The inhabitants or members of a parish; specifically, in the United Kingdom, those inhabitants of a parish who are entitled to vote in a parish election.
  • Of or belonging to a parish; parochial: as, the parish church or minister; parish records; the parish school.
  • Maintained by the parish or by public charity: as, parish poor.
  • Rustic; provincial.
  • n. In the game of curling, the ring in the center of which the tee is placed.

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

  • n. the local subdivision of a diocese committed to one pastor
  • n. a local church community


Middle English, from Old French parroche, from Late Latin parochia, diocese, alteration of paroecia, from Late Greek paroikiā, from Greek, a sojourning, from paroikos, neighboring, neighbor, sojourner : para-, near; see para-1 + oikos, house; see weik-1 in Indo-European roots.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
Old French paroisse, from Late Latin parochia, from Ancient Greek παρоικία (paroikia, "a dwelling abroad"), from πάρоικος (paroikos, "neighboring, foreigner"), from παρά (para, "beside") + οἶκος (oikos, "house"). (Wiktionary)



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