Dictionary

bishop

noun bish·op \ˈbi-shəp\

: an official in some Christian religions who is ranked higher than a priest and who is usually in charge of church matters in a specific geographical area

: a piece in the game of chess that moves across the board at an angle

Full Definition of BISHOP

1
:  one having spiritual or ecclesiastical supervision: as
a :  an Anglican, Eastern Orthodox, or Roman Catholic clergyman ranking above a priest, having authority to ordain and confirm, and typically governing a diocese
b :  any of various Protestant clerical officials who superintend other clergy
c :  a Mormon high priest presiding over a ward or over all other bishops and over the Aaronic priesthood
2
:  either of two pieces of each color in a set of chessmen having the power to move diagonally across any number of adjoining unoccupied squares
3
:  mulled port wine flavored with oranges and cloves
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Examples of BISHOP

  1. the Bishop of New York

Origin of BISHOP

Middle English bisshop, from Old English bisceop, from Late Latin episcopus, from Greek episkopos, literally, overseer, from epi- + skeptesthai to look — more at spy
First Known Use: before 12th century

Bishop

biographical name Bish·op \ˈbi-shəp\

Definition of BISHOP

Elizabeth 1911–1979 Am. poet

Bishop

biographical name

Definition of BISHOP

John Michael 1936– Am. microbiologist
BISHOP Defined for Kids

bishop

noun bish·op \ˈbi-shəp\

Definition of BISHOP for Kids

1
:  a member of the clergy of high rank
2
:  a piece in the game of chess

Word History of BISHOP

The original duty of a bishop was to watch over the members of a church as a shepherd watches over a flock. Appropriately, the word bishop comes ultimately from a Greek word, episkopos, that means literally overseer: the prefix epi- means on or over, and the second part -skopos means watcher. The pronunciation of the word was changed when it was borrowed from Greek into Latin, and further changed when it was borrowed into Old English. In Old English it was spelled bisceop but probably sounded quite a bit like the modern word bishop.
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