pa·pal | \ ˈpā-pəl \

Definition of papal 

: of or relating to a pope or to the Roman Catholic Church also : resembling a pope or that of a pope

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Other words from papal

papally \ˈpā-pə-lē \ adverb

Examples of papal in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

The oldest item in the show is a 12th-century parchment papal bull, signed by the reigning pope, Anastasius IV; three future popes; one future antipope; and one future saint. Jennifer Schuessler, New York Times, "Not Your Average Autograph Collection," 12 July 2018 The Chandlers got very rich on real estate and publishing, grew the arts, built an Oscar-worthy music hall and, best of all, produced a golden son, Otis, with a movie-star chin but a papal heart. Chris Erskine,, "As we pack up, a bittersweet ode to a workplace that was my second home," 29 June 2018 The Hungarians were furious, and demanded a papal inquiry into Andrew’s death. Anne Thériault, Longreads, "Queens of Infamy: Joanna of Naples," 3 July 2018 But thousands of children pass through the Vatican walls every day, touring the Vatican Museums, attending papal audiences and Masses and visiting St. Peter's Square and basilica. Nicole Winfield, Fox News, "Vatican City still has no policy to fight clergy sex abuse," 1 July 2018 The items on loan, which include papal robes and accessories never viewed outside the Vatican, debut May 10 as a part of Heavenly Bodies: Fashion and the Catholic Imagination. Shira Telushkin, Washington Post, "High church meets high fashion: How Catholic style took over the Met," 3 May 2018 The seminary in question, located inside a palazzo just a few steps from the Vatican hotel where Francis lives, serves as a residence for about a dozen boys, aged 12 to 18, who serve as altar boys at papal Masses. Nicole Winfield, Fox News, "Vatican City still has no policy to fight clergy sex abuse," 1 July 2018 Communion being given at the Vatican during the Fratello pilgrimage in 2016, which sponsored several thousand homeless and other marginalized people from around Europe to travel for an audience with Pope Francis and a papal Mass. Francis X. Rocca, WSJ, "The Battle Over Who Can Take Communion," 29 June 2018 While waiting for his UPI colleagues to arrive, Mr. Fuss was spotted by nuns who mistakenly escorted him to a spot for disabled people awaiting a papal blessing. Staff Reports, Washington Post, "Bob Fuss, CBS News Radio correspondent, dies at 64," 28 May 2018

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

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First Known Use of papal

14th century, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for papal

Middle English, from Anglo-French, from Medieval Latin papalis, from Late Latin papa

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Dictionary Entries near papal





papal cross

papal decree


Phrases Related to papal

papal decree

Statistics for papal

Last Updated

26 Aug 2018

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Time Traveler for papal

The first known use of papal was in the 14th century

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English Language Learners Definition of papal

: of or relating to the pope or the government of the Roman Catholic Church

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Spanish Central: Translation of papal

Nglish: Translation of papal for Spanish Speakers

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alleviating pain or harshness

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