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[in-troh-it, -troit] /ˈɪn troʊ ɪt, -trɔɪt/
Roman Catholic Church. a part of a psalm with antiphon recited by the celebrant of the Mass at the foot of the altar and, at High Mass, sung by the choir when the priest begins the Mass.
Anglican Church, Lutheran Church. a psalm or anthem sung as the celebrant of the Holy Communion enters the sanctuary.
a choral response sung at the beginning of a religious service.
Origin of introit
1475-85; < Medieval Latin introitus (misse or ad missam), Latin: entrance, beginning, equivalent to intro-, combining form of intrō intro- + -i-, variant stem of īre to go + -tus suffix of v. action Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for introit
Historical Examples
  • When the Mass began the choir broke forth, singing the introit.

    Evelyn Innes George Moore
  • Before the introit the crucifix, the altar23, the celebrant and the Pope are successively incensed.

  • This, from being sung or said whilst the minister made his entrance within the rails, was called introitus or introit.

    The Church Index William Pepperell
  • Montanelli stood before the high altar among his ministers and acolytes and read the introit aloud in steady tones.

    The Gadfly E. L. Voynich
  • To our modern ears the introit is new; but it is in reality an old thing, in this and some other instances revived.

    The Church Index William Pepperell
  • The organist was practicing the introit anthem, and half way up the church a woman was sitting quietly.

    Dangerous Days Mary Roberts Rinehart
  • Ascending the altar, the priest passed at once to the right hand side where lay the Mass-Book, from which he read the introit.

    The Loyalist James Francis Barrett
  • Violently the introit rang out, as if from depths beyond the grave, and in it were mingled the tragedy of the man and of the God.

    The Surprises of Life Georges Clemenceau
  • The York rubric directed him to do it immediately alter the first saying of the introit, which in England was thrice said.

British Dictionary definitions for introit


(RC Church, Church of England) a short prayer said or sung as the celebrant is entering the sanctuary to celebrate Mass or Holy Communion
Derived Forms
introital, adjective
Word Origin
C15: from Church Latin introitus introit, from Latin: entrance, from introīre to go in, from intro- + īre to go
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
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Word Origin and History for introit

late 15c., from Old French introit (14c.), from Latin introitus "a going in," past participle of introire "to enter," from intro- (see intro-) + ire "to go" (see ion).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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