praefect

[ pree-fekt ]
/ ˈpri fɛkt /

noun

Definition for praefect (2 of 2)

prefect

or prae·fect

[ pree-fekt ]
/ ˈpri fɛkt /

noun

a person appointed to any of various positions of command, authority, or superintendence, as a chief magistrate in ancient Rome or the chief administrative official of a department of France or Italy.
Roman Catholic Church.
  1. the dean of a Jesuit school or college.
  2. a cardinal in charge of a congregation in the Curia Romana.
Chiefly British. a praeposter.

Origin of prefect

1300–50; Middle English < Latin praefectus overseer, director (noun use of past participle of praeficere to make prior, i.e., put in charge), equivalent to prae- pre- + -fectus (combining form of factus, past participle of facere to make, do1); see fact

Related forms

sub·pre·fect, nounun·der·pre·fect, noun

Can be confused

perfect prefect (see usage note at perfect)
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for praefect

British Dictionary definitions for praefect (1 of 2)

praefect

/ (ˈpriːfɛkt) /

noun

Derived Forms

praefectorial (ˌpriːfɛkˈtɔːrɪəl), adjective

British Dictionary definitions for praefect (2 of 2)

prefect

/ (ˈpriːfɛkt) /

noun

Also (for senses 4–7): praefect

Derived Forms

prefectorial (ˌpriːfɛkˈtɔːrɪəl), adjective

Word Origin for prefect

C14: from Latin praefectus one put in charge, from praeficere to place in authority over, from prae before + facere to do, make
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