Why was "tantrum" trending last week?


[frahy-er] /ˈfraɪ ər/
Roman Catholic Church. a member of a religious order, especially the mendicant orders of Franciscans, Dominicans, Carmelites, and Augustinians.
Printing. a blank or light area on a printed page caused by uneven inking of the plate or type.
Compare monk (def 3).
1250-1300; Middle English frier, frere brother < Old French frere < Latin frāter brother
Can be confused
friar, frier, fryer.
1. See monk. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
Cite This Source
British Dictionary definitions for friar


a member of any of various chiefly mendicant religious orders of the Roman Catholic Church, the main orders being Black Friars (Dominicans), Grey Friars (Franciscans), White Friars (Carmelites), and Austin Friars (Augustinians) See also Black Friar, Grey Friar, White Friar, Augustinian
Derived Forms
friarly, adjective
Word Origin
C13 frere, from Old French: brother, from Latin frāterbrother
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
Word Origin and History for friar

late 13c., from Old French frere "brother, friar" (9c.), originally the mendicant orders (Franciscans, Augustines, Dominicans, Carmelites), who reached England early 13c., from Latin frater "brother" (see brother).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source
Encyclopedia Article for friar

(from Latin frater through French frere, "brother"), one belonging to a Roman Catholic religious order of mendicants. Formerly, friar was the title given to individual members of these orders, as Friar Laurence (in Romeo and Juliet), but this is no longer common. The 10 mendicant orders are the Dominicans, Franciscans, Augustinians (Augustian Hermits), Carmelites, Trinitarians, Mercedarians, Servites, Minims, Hospitallers of St. John of God, and the Teutonic Order (the Austrian branch)

Learn more about friar with a free trial on
Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
Cite This Source

Word of the Day

Difficulty index for friar

Most English speakers likely know this word

Word Value for friar

Scrabble Words With Friends

Quotes with friar

Nearby words for friar