rab·​bi | \ ˈra-ˌbī How to pronounce rabbi (audio) \

Definition of rabbi

1 : master, teacher used by Jews as a term of address
2 : a Jew qualified to expound and apply the halacha and other Jewish law
3 : a Jew trained and ordained for professional religious leadership specifically : the official leader of a Jewish congregation

Examples of rabbi in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

Although our service was rooted in tradition, our incredible rabbi, Angela Buchdahl, created an experience that was so warm and personal. Alexandra Macon, Vogue, "A Midsummer Night’s Dream: This Bride Wore Custom Giambattista Valli for Her Wedding in the Hamptons," 6 Feb. 2019 The five, who included a rabbi and two other members of Jewish Voice for Peace, along with members of Presbyterian and Muslim groups, were told that the Israeli government had ordered the airline not to allow them to board. David M. Halbfinger, New York Times, "Boycott Drive Put Israel on a Blacklist. Now Israel Has One of Its Own.," 7 Jan. 2018 The one exception is matzo, a flat, unleavened bread made with flour that a rabbi has blessed. Woman's Day Staff, Woman's Day, "6 Passover Desserts," 1 Nov. 2013 One Paris rabbi is quoted as saying 80 percent of young couples about to marry tell him this. Brian Eads, Newsweek, "Are the French Anti-Semitic?," 6 Feb. 2014 But in 1882, Houdini’s father, Mayer Samuel Weisz, lost his job as rabbi for a Reform Jewish congregation in Appleton, Wis.plunging his family into poverty. Mary Carole Mccauley, baltimoresun.com, "Behind the magic of Harry Houdini at the Jewish Museum of Maryland," 29 June 2018 They were joined by Trump’s daughter Ivanka and her husband, Jared Kushner, as well as Myers, the Tree of Life rabbi, and Israeli Ambassador Ron Dermer. Allen G. Breed, The Seattle Times, "Mourning and protests as Pittsburgh begins victims’ burials," 31 Oct. 2018 Abraham Lincoln Krohn was given the name of a president and the blood of a rabbi. Jessica Boehm, azcentral, "Effort to save Phoenix's first Orthodox Jewish synagogue reveals forgotten history," 23 Mar. 2018 Tens of thousands of ultra-Orthodox Jews are attending the funeral of the influential rabbi who died on Saturday in Jerusalem. Washington Post, "Tens of thousands at Jerusalem funeral of influential rabbi," 25 Feb. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'rabbi.' 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 rabbi

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for rabbi

Middle English, from Old English, from Late Latin, from Greek rhabbi, from Hebrew rabbī my master, from rabh master + my

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Statistics for rabbi

Last Updated

10 Apr 2019

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Time Traveler for rabbi

The first known use of rabbi was before the 12th century

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English Language Learners Definition of rabbi

: a person who is trained to make decisions about what is lawful in Judaism, to perform Jewish ceremonies, or to lead a Jewish congregation


rab·​bi | \ ˈra-ˌbī How to pronounce rabbi (audio) \
plural rabbis

Kids Definition of rabbi

: a person educated in Jewish law and able to lead a Jewish congregation

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More from Merriam-Webster on rabbi

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with rabbi

Spanish Central: Translation of rabbi

Nglish: Translation of rabbi for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of rabbi for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about rabbi

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