- the pope as patriarch of the West.
- any of certain bishops of the Eastern rites, as a head of an Eastern rite or a bishop of one of the ancient sees.
- the head of a Uniate church.
Origin of patriarch
Examples from the Web for patriarchs
As the great commentator, the Ramban, teaches, “everything that happened to the Patriarchs is a portent for the children.”
He might almost have lived in the time of the Patriarchs, but we gather that he preferred the days of the profits.
This certainly was the case before the Babylonish exile, though doubtless the patriarchs had more correct notions.The Religion of Geology and Its Connected Sciences|Edward Hitchcock
When he speaks of morals and the family, he seems at times like the patriarchs of the Bible.What is Property?|P. J. Proudhon
British Dictionary definitions for patriarchs
- a title given to the pope
- a title given to a number of bishops, esp of the Uniat Churches, indicating their rank as immediately below that of the pope
Word Origin for patriarch
Word Origin and History for patriarchs
late 12c., from Old French patriarche "one of the Old Testament fathers" (11c.) and directly from Late Latin patriarcha (Tertullian), from Greek patriarkhes "chief or head of a family," from patria "family, clan," from pater "father" (see father (n.)) + arkhein "to rule" (see archon). Also used as an honorific title of certain bishops in the early Church, notably those of Antioch, Alexandria, and Rome.