pontificate

[ noun pon-tif-i-kit, -keyt; verb pon-tif-i-keyt ]
/ noun pɒnˈtɪf ɪ kɪt, -ˌkeɪt; verb pɒnˈtɪf ɪˌkeɪt /

noun

the office or term of office of a pontiff.

verb (used without object), pon·tif·i·cat·ed, pon·tif·i·cat·ing.

to perform the office or duties of a pontiff.
to speak in a pompous or dogmatic manner: Did he pontificate about the responsibilities of a good citizen?
to serve as a bishop, especially in a Pontifical Mass.

Nearby words

  1. pontific,
  2. pontifical,
  3. pontifical college,
  4. pontifical mass,
  5. pontificals,
  6. pontifices,
  7. pontil,
  8. pontile,
  9. pontine,
  10. pontine angle tumor

Origin of pontificate

1575–85; (noun) < Latin pontificātus; see pontifical, -ate3; (v.) < Medieval Latin pontificātus past participle of pontificāre to be an ecclesiastic; see -ate1

Related formspon·tif·i·ca·tion, nounpon·tif·i·ca·tor, noun

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for pontificate


British Dictionary definitions for pontificate

pontificate

verb (pɒnˈtɪfɪˌkeɪt) (intr)

to speak or behave in a pompous or dogmatic mannerAlso (less commonly): pontify (ˈpɒntɪˌfaɪ)
to serve or officiate as a pontiff, esp in celebrating a Pontifical Mass

noun (pɒnˈtɪfɪkɪt)

the office or term of office of a pontiff, now usually the pope
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

Word Origin and History for pontificate
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper