clerical collar


: a narrow stiffly upright white collar worn buttoned at the back of the neck by members of the clergy

Example Sentences

Recent Examples on the Web As a pair, Tutu and his wife Leah also cut impressively stylish figures, with the former regularly wearing tailoring with a pink shirt and white clerical collar, and the latter favoring the vibrant colors and bold patterns of traditional South African dress. Liam Hess, Vogue, 26 Dec. 2021 He’s accompanied by another man of the cloth, this gentleman slightly older, a white clerical collar peeking out from his rain jacket. Gregg Doyel, The Indianapolis Star, 18 July 2022 The white-haired cardinal appeared in court with his walking stick, wearing a clerical collar and a cross around his neck. Elaine Yu, WSJ, 25 Nov. 2022 The eastern parson spider, named for the way the white patch on its black abdomen resembles a clerical collar. Adam Roy, Outside Online, 26 Oct. 2022 Bishop Zanchetta, wearing a dark suit, clerical collar and mask, mostly looked down as the verdict was read. Silvina Frydlewsky And Francis X. Rocca, WSJ, 4 Mar. 2022 Then, just before lunchtime, another worker emerges from a backroom, wearing a black sweater and clerical collar. Washington Post, 15 Oct. 2021 The chaplain, Lisa Loughlin of Common Cathedral, a 25-year-old outdoor ministry, wears her clerical collar under a North Face fleece and carries a backpack stuffed with sandwiches, socks, winter hats and gloves, and extra face masks. Jonathan D. Fitzgerald,, 9 Mar. 2021 O’Donnell, who is 74 with hair as white as the clerical collar on his neck, is sitting in his office, flanked by his beloved Native American artwork, talking about his nearly half-century as a Catholic priest in the San Diego diocese. San Diego Union-Tribune, 20 Dec. 2020 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'clerical collar.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use

1948, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of clerical collar was in 1948

Dictionary Entries Near clerical collar

Cite this Entry

“Clerical collar.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 10 Jun. 2023.

Kids Definition

clerical collar

: a narrow stiffly upright white collar worn by members of the clergy
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