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prelacy

[prel-uh-see] /ˈprɛl ə si/
noun, plural prelacies.
1.
the office or dignity of a prelate, or high-ranking member of the Christian clergy.
2.
the order of prelates.
3.
the body of prelates collectively.
4.
Sometimes Disparaging. the system of church government by prelates.
Origin
1275-1325
1275-1325; Middle English prelacie < Anglo-French < Medieval Latin praelātia. See prelate, -y3
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Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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British Dictionary definitions for prelacy

prelacy

/ˈprɛləsɪ/
noun (pl) -cies
1.
Also called prelature (ˈprɛlɪtʃə)
  1. the office or status of a prelate
  2. prelates collectively
2.
(often derogatory) Also called prelatism (ˈprɛləˌtɪzəm). government of the Church by prelates
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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