Stories We Like: Novels For Language Lovers
"of or pertaining to shepherds," early 15c., from Old French pastoral (13c.), from Latin pastoralis "of herdsmen, of shepherds," from pastor (see pastor (n.)). The noun sense of "poem dealing with country life generally" is from 1580s.
A work of art that celebrates the cultivated enjoyment of the countryside. The poem “The Passionate Shepherd to His Love,” by Christopher Marlowe, is a pastoral. Its first stanza reads:
Come live with me, and be my love;
And we will all the pleasures prove
That hills and valleys, dales and fields,
Woods or steepy mountain yields.
staff with a curved top that is a symbol of the Good Shepherd and is carried by bishops of the Roman Catholic, Anglican, and some European Lutheran churches and by abbots and abbesses as an insignia of their ecclesiastical office and, in former times, of temporal power. It is made of metal or carved wood and is often very ornate. Possibly derived from the ordinary walking stick, it was first mentioned as a sign of a bishop's ruling power in 633 at the fourth Council of Toledo. French bishops adopted it in the late 8th century, and it was gradually adopted throughout Christendom. Originally a staff with a cross, sphere, or tau cross on top, it acquired its present form by the 13th century.