preach·​er ˈprē-chər How to pronounce preacher (audio)
plural preachers
: one who preaches: such as
: a person who delivers a sermon publicly
a street preacher
: one whose function is to preach sermons : pastor, minister
She waited patiently on a Sunday morning until the crowd had said good-by to the preacher.Don Jeffries
"What kind of preacher are you? What denomination?" "I was ordained in a Baptist church, but I'm sort of nondenominational now."John Grisham
: one who inculcates or exhorts something earnestly or officiously
… he was an ardent preacher of gentlemanly ethics …Paul Schullery
… he was perceived by the larger world, not inaccurately, as a preacher of the hatred.Nicholas Lemann

Examples of preacher in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Bishop Carlton Pearson, a renowned preacher, singer and composer, known for his Live At Azusa albums, died on November 19 after a battle with cancer in Tulsa, Oklahoma. Meagan Jordan, Rolling Stone, 23 Nov. 2023 Her mother, Ann, was a full-time parent, and her father, Charles, was a lawyer and a volunteer preacher. Anna Wiener, The New Yorker, 13 Nov. 2023 His grandfather, John Elmore, a poor son of a Missouri preacher, arrived in California’s Imperial Valley in 1908 and dug ditches to deliver water to homesteaders. Janet Wilson, ProPublica, 9 Nov. 2023 Reverend Saviour The Christian preacher who changes Tommy’s life for the better. Okla Jones, Essence, 4 Nov. 2023 Tim Roth is in final negotiations to co-star, playing a preacher. Scott Roxborough, The Hollywood Reporter, 4 Nov. 2023 The film also explores Rustin’s romantic relationships, including an on-again, off-again affair with a fictional married Black preacher (Johnny Ramey) and another entanglement with his fellow activist Tom Kahn (Gus Halper). Michael O'Sullivan, Washington Post, 1 Nov. 2023 The rise of the 30-year-old preacher, Amritpal Singh, was mysterious. Hari Kumar, New York Times, 28 Sep. 2023 That was back when Perry was still dreaming of becoming a preacher. Peter Debruge, Variety, 28 Oct. 2023 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'preacher.' 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

13th century, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of preacher was in the 13th century

Dictionary Entries Near preacher

Cite this Entry

“Preacher.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 11 Dec. 2023.

Kids Definition


: one that preaches

More from Merriam-Webster on preacher

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