abbé

noun

ab·​bé a-ˈbā How to pronounce abbé (audio)
ˈa-ˌbā
: a member of the French secular clergy in major or minor orders
used as a title

Example Sentences

Recent Examples on the Web After his death just five years later, the paintings were inventoried simply as depictions of the basilica and square without any mention of the poor abbe. Steven Litt, cleveland.com, 25 Feb. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'abbé.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

Word History

Etymology

borrowed from French, literally, "abbot" (extended as a title to nonresident abbots and hence to any clergyman in a secular environment), going back to Old French abé, going back to Late Latin abbāt-, abbās abbot

First Known Use

1530, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of abbé was in 1530

Dictionary Entries Near abbé

Cite this Entry

“Abbé.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/abb%C3%A9. Accessed 9 Dec. 2022.

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