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clerisy

[kler-uh-see]
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noun
  1. learned persons as a class; literati; intelligentsia.
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Origin of clerisy

1818; < German Klerisei clergy < Medieval Latin clēricia, equivalent to clēric(us) cleric + -ia -ia; introduced by S.T. Coleridge
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

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Word Origin and History for clerisy

n.

1818, on model of German clerisei, from Late Latin clericia, related to clericus (see cleric); coined by Coleridge "to express a notion no longer associated with CLERGY" [OED].

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper