any system of persons or things ranked one above another.
government by ecclesiastical rulers.
the power or dominion of a hierarch.
an organized body of ecclesiastical officials in successive ranks or orders:
the Roman Catholic hierarchy.
one of the three divisions of the angels, each made up of three orders, conceived as constituting a graded body.
government by an elite group.
Linguistics. the system of levels according to which a language is organized, as phonemic, morphemic, syntactic, or semantic.