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archdeacon

[ahrch-dee-kuh n] /ˈɑrtʃˈdi kən/
noun
1.
an ecclesiastic, ranking next below a bishop and having charge of the temporal and external administration of a diocese, with jurisdiction delegated from the bishop.
2.
Roman Catholic Church. a title of honor conferred only on a member of a cathedral chapter.
Origin
1000
before 1000; Middle English archideken, Old English arcediacon < Late Latin archidiāconus < Greek archidiā́konos. See arch-1, deacon
Related forms
archdeaconate, archdeaconship, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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British Dictionary definitions for arch deaconship

archdeacon

/ˈɑːtʃˈdiːkən/
noun
1.
an Anglican clergyman ranking just below a bishop and having supervisory duties under the bishop
2.
a clergyman of similar rank in other Churches
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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Word Origin and History for arch deaconship

archdeacon

n.

Old English arcediacon, from Church Latin archidiaconus, from Ecclesiastical Greek arkhidiakonon "chief deacon;" see arch- + deacon.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Encyclopedia Article for arch deaconship

archdeacon

in the Christian church, originally the chief deacon at the bishop's church; during the European Middle Ages, a chief official of the diocese; an honorary title in the modern Roman Catholic church. The name was first used in the 4th century, although a similar office existed in the very early church. Appointed by the bishop, the archdeacon was charged with the duties of preaching, supervising the deacons and their work, and supervising the distribution of alms. Eventually he became the first assistant to the bishop in the administrative and disciplinary work of the diocese and even represented the bishop at councils. When the bishop died, the archdeacon governed the diocese until a successor was elected.

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Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
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9
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