prelacy

prelacy

[prel-uh-see]
noun, plural prelacies.
1.
the office or dignity of a prelate.
2.
the order of prelates.
3.
the body of prelates collectively.
4.
Sometimes Disparaging. the system of church government by prelates.

Origin:
1275–1325; Middle English prelacie < Anglo-French < Medieval Latin praelātia. See prelate, -y3

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World English Dictionary
prelacy (ˈprɛləsɪ)
 
n , pl -cies
1.  Also called: prelature
 a.  the office or status of a prelate
 b.  prelates collectively
2.  derogatory often Also called: prelatism government of the Church by prelates

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