follow Dictionary.com

Submit your word to be a Word of the Day!

deaconess

[dee-kuh-nis] /ˈdi kə nɪs/
noun
1.
(in certain Protestant churches) a woman belonging to an order or sisterhood dedicated to the care of the sick or poor or who is engaging in other social-service duties, as teaching or missionary work.
2.
a woman elected by a church to assist the clergy.
Origin
1530-1540
1530-40; earlier deaconisse, part translation, part adoption of Late Latin diāconissa, feminine of diāconus deacon; see -ess
Usage note
See -ess.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
Cite This Source
British Dictionary definitions for deaconess

deaconess

/ˈdiːkənɪs/
noun
1.
(Christianity) (in the early church and in some modern Churches) a female member of the laity with duties similar to those of a deacon
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
Cite This Source
deaconess in the Bible

Rom. 16:1, 3, 12; Phil. 4:2, 3; 1 Tim. 3:11; 5:9, 10; Titus 2:3, 4). In these passages it is evident that females were then engaged in various Christian ministrations. Pliny makes mention of them also in his letter to Trajan (A.D. 110).

Easton's 1897 Bible Dictionary
Cite This Source

Word of the Day

Difficulty index for deaconess

Few English speakers likely know this word

Word Value for deaconess

12
14
Scrabble Words With Friends

Nearby words for deaconess