rev·​er·​end | \ˈrev-rənd, ˈre-və-;ˈre-vərnd\

Definition of reverend 

(Entry 1 of 2)

1 : worthy of reverence : revered

2a : of or relating to the clergy

b : being a member of the clergy used as a title the Reverend Mr. Doethe Reverend John Doethe Reverend Mrs. Jane Doe



Definition of reverend (Entry 2 of 2)

: a member of the clergy sometimes used in plural as a title

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Synonyms & Antonyms for reverend

Synonyms: Adjective

hallowed, revered, sacred, venerable, venerated

Synonyms: Noun

clergyperson, cleric, clerical, clerk, deacon, divine, dominie, ecclesiastic, minister, preacher, priest

Antonyms: Noun

layman, layperson, secular

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Examples of reverend in a Sentence


our reverend elders should be accorded a special place of honor at the ceremonies


called their reverend and asked if he could marry them next June

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Both of Weisz's parents are Jewish refugees from Eastern Europe, and her mother managed to escape Austria before the Holocaust thanks to a reverend in England. Mehera Bonner, Marie Claire, "Rachel Weisz Recounts Her Mom's Narrow Escape from the Holocaust," 13 Oct. 2016 Prince George’s ceremony was officiated by the same reverend, Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby, who will officiate Louis’s. Rachel E. Greenspan, Time, "Prince Louis' Christening Venue Has a Poignant Tie to Princess Diana. Here's What to Know About the Chapel Royal," 9 July 2018 The reverends are not the first religious members to denounce the policy. NBC News, "Indianapolis church 'detains' Jesus, Mary and Joseph in protest of child separation policy," 3 July 2018 The reverend who leads the local church, locked in perpetual mourning after an accident took the lives of four local teens, instills that cutting edge dancing and music are unlawful. Karie Angell Luc,, "Wilmette's high energy 'Footloose' production shares message of empowering teens," 12 July 2018 Through a relationship with Ariel, the reverend’s rebellious teenage daughter, healing begins via communication and dance. Karie Angell Luc,, "Wilmette's high energy 'Footloose' production shares message of empowering teens," 12 July 2018 What does Joe Lieberman make of what the good reverend just said, of what Ron Paul has been saying, and what everyone seems to be saying in between, about a royal battle to come, of course, from Rand Paul and others? Fox News, "Sen. Rand Paul: Supreme Court vote will be divided along party lines," 28 June 2018 Part of the group are children of Roby Sangr and Gunawan Liem, both from Indonesia, the reverend said. Chris Fuchs /, NBC News, "Children of Christian Indonesians detained by ICE make case for keeping families together," 26 June 2018 Neither of the two reverends to whom the letter was addressed returned messages seeking comment Tuesday. Katherine Rosenberg-douglas,, "Group of Methodists signs letter charging Sessions with ‘child abuse,’ ‘immorality’ and ‘racial discrimination’," 19 June 2018

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


15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1608, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for reverend


Middle English, borrowed from Anglo-French, borrowed from Latin reverendus, gerundive of reverērī "to stand in awe of, revere entry 1"


derivative of reverend entry 1

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Statistics for reverend

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Time Traveler for reverend

The first known use of reverend was in the 15th century

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More Definitions for reverend



English Language Learners Definition of reverend

: a priest or minister in the Christian church


rev·​er·​end | \ˈre-və-rənd, ˈrev-rənd\

Kids Definition of reverend

1 : worthy of honor and respect

2 used as a title for a member of the clergy the Reverend John Doethe Reverend Jane Doe

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Comments on reverend

What made you want to look up reverend? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


the figure or shape of a crescent moon

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