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[voh-tuh-ree] /ˈvoʊ tə ri/
noun, plural votaries. Also, votarist
a person who is bound by solemn religious vows, as a monk or a nun.
an adherent of a religion or cult; a worshiper of a particular deity or sacred personage.
a person who is devoted or addicted to some subject or pursuit:
a votary of jazz.
a devoted follower or admirer.
consecrated by a vow.
of or relating to a vow.
Origin of votary
1540-50; < Latin vōt(um) a vow + -ary
3. buff, fan, admirer, devotee. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for votaries
Historical Examples
  • The votaries of the saint will get up a petition to have his body moved.

    It Happened in Egypt C. N. Williamson
  • Some of its votaries, on the other hand, are inclined to exalt it unduly.

  • The votaries of hydropathy are rarely victims of grave malady.

    Davenport Dunn, Volume 1 (of 2) Charles James Lever
  • Love can build a shelter for his votaries, and has a sun-shine of his own.

    Cruel Barbara Allen David Christie Murray
  • His votaries were not encumbered with an exalted code of morality.

    Welsh Folk-Lore Elias Owen
  • For music is of all arts the one which insists on most co-operation on the part of its votaries.

    Laurus Nobilis Vernon Lee
  • The salons did their utmost to make him one of their votaries.

  • Its votaries seem to be going to and fro wrapped in sheep's wool.

    Suspended Judgments John Cowper Powys
  • Around him the votaries of fashion and wealth were flushed with gayety.

    Robert Toombs Pleasant A. Stovall
  • Who is to say what percentage the votaries of the "System" take in their game?

    Frenzied Finance Thomas W. Lawson
British Dictionary definitions for votaries


noun (pl) -ries
(RC Church, Eastern Churches) a person, such as a monk or nun, who has dedicated himself or herself to religion by taking vows
a devoted adherent of a religion, cause, leader, pursuit, etc
ardently devoted to the services or worship of God, a deity, or a saint
Derived Forms
votaress, votress, noun:feminine
Word Origin
C16: from Latin vōtum a vow, from vovēre to vow
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 votaries



1540s, "one consecrated by a vow," from Latin votum (see vow). Originally "a monk or nun," general sense of "ardent devotee of some aim or pursuit" is from 1591 (in Shakespeare, originally in reference to love).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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