Try Our Apps


Is irregardless a word?


[rek-ter] /ˈrɛk tər/
a member of the clergy in charge of a parish in the Protestant Episcopal Church.
Roman Catholic Church. an ecclesiastic in charge of a college, religious house, or congregation.
Anglican Church. a member of the clergy who has the charge of a parish with full possession of all its rights, tithes, etc.
the head of certain universities, colleges, and schools.
Origin of rector
1350-1400; Middle English rectour < Latin rēctor helmsman, ruler, leader, equivalent to reg(ere) to rule + -tor -tor
Related forms
[rek-tawr-ee-uh l, -tohr-] /rɛkˈtɔr i əl, -ˈtoʊr-/ (Show IPA),
subrector, noun Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2016.
Cite This Source
Examples from the Web for rector
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • He was over fifty years of age, and had been rector of Bowick for nearly twenty.

    Dr. Wortle's School Anthony Trollope
  • The rector proved himself a competitor worthy of the minister's mettle.

    Days Off Henry Van Dyke
  • And after a few minutes of desultory conversation, the rector left.

  • The rector was enthusiastic in his admiration of Wordsworth.

    Lady Bountiful George A. Birmingham
  • Mr. Austen, rector of Whitby, was present when Catherine told this.

    The Story of My Life, volumes 4-6 Augustus J. C. Hare
  • Doctor Baker looked at the rector's wife, and a kind of flame came into his eyes.

    Robert Elsmere Mrs. Humphry Ward
British Dictionary definitions for rector


(Church of England) a clergyman in charge of a parish in which, as its incumbent, he would formerly have been entitled to the whole of the tithes Compare vicar
(RC Church) a cleric in charge of a college, religious house, or congregation
(Episcopal Church, Scottish Episcopal Church) a clergyman in charge of a parish
(mainly Brit) the head of certain schools or colleges
(in Scotland) a high-ranking official in a university: now a public figure elected for three years by the students
Derived Forms
rectorate, noun
rectorial (rɛkˈtɔːrɪəl) adjective
rectorship, noun
Word Origin
C14: from Latin: director, ruler, from regere to rule
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
Cite This Source
Word Origin and History for rector

late 14c. (early 13c. in Anglo-Latin), from Latin rector "ruler, governor, director, guide," from rect-, past participle stem of regere "to rule, guide" (see regal). Used originally of Roman governors and God, by 18c. generally restricted to clergymen and college heads. Related: Rectorship.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source

Word of the Day

Difficulty index for rector

Some English speakers likely know this word

Word Value for rector

Scrabble Words With Friends

Nearby words for rector