• synonyms


noun Ecclesiastical.
  1. a cassock.
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Origin of soutane

1830–40; < French < Italian sottana, feminine of sottano placed below, equivalent to sott(o) below (< Latin subtus) + -ano -an; form of the French word influenced by sous under
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for soutane

Historical Examples

  • Let us change robes—give me that "soutane," and put on the blouse.

    Maurice Tiernay Soldier of Fortune

    Charles James Lever

  • And Prince Max, tired of ballet girls, is about to take the soutane.

  • With these sentiments Monsignor Pamphilio slipped the work under his soutane.

    The Library

    Andrew Lang

  • A "Brother," in a soutane, was going about from pillar to pillar, lighting the gas.

    Saturday's Child

    Kathleen Norris

  • He was pushed and struck by them, his soutane was torn to ribbons.

British Dictionary definitions for soutane


  1. RC Church a priest's cassock
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Word Origin

C19: from French, from Old Italian sottana, from Medieval Latin subtanus (adj) (worn) beneath, from Latin subtus below
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 soutane


"long, buttoned gown or frock with sleeves, outer garment of Roman Catholic ecclesiastics," 1838, from French soutane, from Old French sotane "undershirt," from Medieval Latin subtana "an under-cassock," from Latin subtus "beneath, under, below" (see sub-).

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper