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[ih-klee-zee-as-ti-kuh l] /ɪˌkli ziˈæs tɪ kəl/
of or relating to the church or the clergy; churchly; clerical; not secular.
Origin of ecclesiastical
late Middle English
late Middle English word dating back to 1375-1425; See origin at Ecclesiastes, -ical
Related forms
ecclesiastically, adverb
antiecclesiastical, adjective
antiecclesiastically, adverb
interecclesiastical, adjective
interecclesiastically, adverb
nonecclesiastical, adjective
nonecclesiastically, adverb
unecclesiastically, adverb Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for ecclesiastical
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • The financial as well as this ecclesiastical question was a problem.

    The Grand Old Man Richard B. Cook
  • The great mace used by his ecclesiastical ancestor he unhooked from the wall.

    Viviette William J. Locke
  • What place is there then for intersectarian or ecclesiastical arrogance?

  • Let us now pass to the ecclesiastical policy of Zeno's reign.

    The Formation of Christendom, Volume VI

    Thomas W. (Thomas William) Allies
  • Fine thing to be minutely acquainted with ecclesiastical history!

  • There are no punishments by law for disobedience of an ecclesiastical court.

    The Soul of a People H. Fielding
  • “You have heartened me more than you know,” said Mr. Mix, with ecclesiastical soberness.

    Rope Holworthy Hall
British Dictionary definitions for ecclesiastical


of or relating to the Christian Church
Derived Forms
ecclesiastically, adverb
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 ecclesiastical

early 15c., from ecclesiastic + -al (1). Related: Ecclesiastically.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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