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secretary of state

or Secretary of State

the head and chief administrator of the U.S. Department of State.
British. any of several ministers in the British government:
A new secretary of state for the Home Department has been appointed.
(in the U.S.) the appointed or elected official in a state government whose chief function is to distribute statutes, administer elections, keep archives, etc.
Origin of secretary of state
1610-20 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2016.
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Examples from the Web for secretary-of-state
Historical Examples
  • secretary-of-state Seward was stabbed in his sick-bed by one of Booth's co-conspirators.

    Tom Strong, Lincoln's Scout Alfred Bishop Mason
British Dictionary definitions for secretary-of-state

secretary of state

(in Britain) the head of any of several government departments
(in the US) the head of the government department in charge of foreign affairs (State Department)
(in certain US states) an official with various duties, such as keeping records
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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secretary-of-state in Culture

secretary of state definition

The head of the United States Department of State and, as leading member of the cabinet, fourth in line of succession to the presidency. The secretary of state is charged with formulating American foreign policy and conducting relations with other nations.

The American Heritage® New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
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