godfather

godfather

[god-fah-ther]
noun
1.
a man who serves as sponsor for a child at baptism.
2.
any male sponsor or guardian.
3.
(often initial capital letter) a powerful leader, especially of the Mafia.
4.
a person who is regarded as the originator or principal shaper of a movement, school of thought, art form, industry, or the like: the godfather of abstract expressionism.
verb (used with object)
5.
to act as godfather to; be sponsor or protector for.

Origin:
before 1000; Middle English godfader, Old English godfæder. See God, father

godfatherly, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged

Godfather, The

[god-fah-ther]
noun
a novel (1969) by Mario Puzo.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Collins
World English Dictionary
godfather (ˈɡɒdˌfɑːðə)
 
n
1.  a male godparent
2.  the head of a Mafia family or other organized criminal ring
3.  an originator or leading exponent: the godfather of South African pop

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009
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Encyclopedia Britannica
Encyclopedia

godfather

one who stands surety for another in the rite of Christian baptism. In the modern baptism of an infant or child the godparent or godparents make profession of faith for the person being baptized (the godchild) and assume an obligation to serve as proxies for the parents if the parents either are unable or neglect to provide for the religious training of the child, in fulfillment of baptismal promises. In churches mandating a sponsor only one godparent is required; two (in most churches, of different sex) are permitted. Many Protestant denominations permit but do not require godparents to join the infant's natural parents as sponsors. In the Roman Catholic Church godparents must be of the Catholic faith.

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Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
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