[ min-uh-ster ]
/ ˈmɪn ə stər /
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See synonyms for: minister / ministering on Thesaurus.com


verb (used with object)

to administer or apply: to minister the last rites.
Archaic. to furnish; supply.

verb (used without object)



In effect, this quiz will prove whether or not you have the skills to know the difference between “affect” and “effect.”
Question 1 of 7
The rainy weather could not ________ my elated spirits on my graduation day.

Origin of minister

1250–1300; (noun) Middle English ministre, minister (<Old French ministre) <Latin minister servant, equivalent to minis- (variant of minus a lesser amount; akin to minorminor) + -ter noun suffix; replacing Middle English menistre<Old French <Latin, as above; (v.) Middle English ministren<Old French ministrer<Latin ministrāre to act as a servant, attend, derivative of minister
pre·min·is·ter, verb (used without object)sub·min·is·ter, nounun·der·min·is·ter, nounun·min·is·tered, adjective
clergy, cleric, imam, minister , pastor, priest, rabbi
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2021

British Dictionary definitions for minister

/ (ˈmɪnɪstə) /



(intr often foll by to) to attend to the needs (of); take care (of)
(tr) archaic to provide; supply
ministership, noun
C13: via Old French from Latin: servant; related to minus less
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

Cultural definitions for minister (1 of 2)


In many Protestant churches, the presiding clergyman. Ministers preach sermons; conduct services; officiate at baptisms, weddings, and funerals; and generally look after the needs of their congregation. Some Protestant churches refer to their clergy as pastors or preachers rather than ministers.

Cultural definitions for minister (2 of 2)


A title used in many countries for members of cabinets and similar public officials, who are roughly equivalent to the officials in the United States cabinet. For example, a minister of foreign affairs will have duties similar to those of the secretary of state of the United States.

The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
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