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[aw-fer-tawr-ee, -tohr-ee, of-er-] /ˈɔ fərˌtɔr i, -ˌtoʊr i, ˈɒf ər-/
noun, plural offertories.
(sometimes initial capital letter) the offering of the unconsecrated elements that is made to God by the celebrant in a Eucharistic service.
  1. the verses, anthem, or music said, sung, or played while the offerings of the people are received at a religious service.
  2. that part of a service at which offerings are made.
  3. the offerings themselves.
Origin of offertory
1350-1400; Middle English offertorie < Medieval Latin offertōrium place to which offerings are brought, offering, oblation, equivalent to Latin offer(re) (see offer) + -tōrium -tory2; cf. oblation
Related forms
offertorial, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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British Dictionary definitions for offertory


noun (pl) -tories
the oblation of the bread and wine at the Eucharist
the offerings of the worshippers at this service
the prayers said or sung while the worshippers' offerings are being received
Word Origin
C14: from Church Latin offertōrium place appointed for offerings, from Latin offerre to offer
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 offertory

"the part of a Mass at which offerings are made," late 14c., from Medieval Latin offertorium "place where offerings are brought," from Vulgar Latin offertus, corresponding to Latin oblatus, past participle of offerre (see offer (v.)). Meaning "part of a religious service" is first recorded 1530s; sense of "collection of money" is from 1862.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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