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churchwarden

[church-wawr-dn] /ˈtʃɜrtʃˌwɔr dn/
noun
1.
Anglican Church. a lay officer who looks after the secular affairs of the church, and who, in England, is the legal representative of the parish.
2.
Episcopal Church. a lay church officer who, with other members of the vestry, is in charge of the temporal management of the parish.
3.
a long-stemmed clay pipe for smoking.
Origin
late Middle English
1400-1450
1400-50; late Middle English chirche wardeyn
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Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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British Dictionary definitions for churchwarden

churchwarden

/ˌtʃɜːtʃˈwɔːdən/
noun
1.
(Church of England, Episcopal Church) one of two assistants of a parish priest who administer the secular affairs of the church
2.
a long-stemmed tobacco pipe made of clay
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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Encyclopedia Article for churchwarden

in the Church of England, one of the lay guardians of a parish church. The office dates from the 14th century, but the original duties of maintaining the edifice and goods of the church, with the financial obligations involved, were transferred to the parochial councils in 1921. Duties that remain are the provision of necessaries for divine service, the allocation of seats, and the keeping of order during services. Churchwardens are appointed after elections, one by the incumbent and one by the parishioners, in each parish

Learn more about churchwarden with a free trial on Britannica.com
Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
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