Quantcast
Merriam-Webster Logo
  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
  • Medical
  • Scrabble
  • Spanish Central
  • Learner's Dictionary
1

pastoral

play
adjective pas·to·ral \ˈpas-t(ə-)rəl\

Simple Definition of pastoral

  • : of or relating to the countryside or to the lives of people who live in the country

  • : of or relating to the spiritual care or guidance of people who are members of a religious group

  • : of or relating to the pastor of a church

Full Definition of pastoral

  1. 1 a (1) :  of, relating to, or composed of shepherds or herdsmen (2) :  devoted to or based on livestock raising b :  of or relating to the countryside :  not urban <a pastoral setting> c :  portraying or expressive of the life of shepherds or country people especially in an idealized and conventionalized manner <pastoral poetry> d :  pleasingly peaceful and innocent :  idyllic

  2. 2 a :  of or relating to spiritual care or guidance especially of a congregation b :  of or relating to the pastor of a church

pas·to·ral·ly play \-t(ə-)rə-lē\ adverb
pas·to·ral·ness noun

Examples of pastoral

  1. The house is situated in a charming pastoral setting.

  2. Her favorite painting in the collection is a pastoral landscape.

  3. The bishop outlined the church's views in a pastoral letter.



Origin of pastoral

Middle English, from Latin pastoralis, from pastor herdsman


First Known Use: 15th century

Other Animal Husbandry Terms


2

pastoral

play
noun pas·to·ral \ˈpas-t(ə-)rəl; 1d is often ˌpas-tə-ˈräl, -ˈral\

Definition of pastoral

  1. 1 a :  a literary work (as a poem or play) dealing with shepherds or rural life in a usually artificial manner and typically drawing a contrast between the innocence and serenity of the simple life and the misery and corruption of city and especially court life b :  pastoral poetry or drama c :  a rural picture or scene d :  pastorale 1a

  2. 2 :  crosier 1

  3. 3 :  a letter of a pastor to his charge: as a :  a letter addressed by a bishop to his diocese b :  a letter of the house of bishops of the Protestant Episcopal Church to be read in each parish



1584

First Known Use of pastoral

1584



Seen and Heard

What made you want to look up pastoral? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

WORD OF THE DAY

February 7, 2016

a slight offense

Get Word of the Day daily email!

WORD GAMES

Take a 3-minute break and test your skills!

image1037863653

Which of the following refers to thin, bending ice, or to the act of running over such ice?

pince-nez duvet spindrift kittly-benders
Name That Thing

10 quick questions: hear them, spell them, and see how your skills compare to the crowd.

TAKE THE QUIZ
SCRABBLE® Sprint

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ