rev·​er·​end | \ ˈrev-rənd How to pronounce reverend (audio) , 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 titlethe 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

Synonyms: Noun

Antonyms: Noun

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Examples of reverend in a Sentence

Adjective our reverend elders should be accorded a special place of honor at the ceremonies Noun called their reverend and asked if he could marry them next June
Recent Examples on the Web: Noun The reverend approached the makeshift pulpit and asked the Lord to help him make some sense of the scene before him: two caskets, side by side, in a small-town cemetery busier now than ever before. Claire Galofaro, The Denver Post, "“It’s gone haywire”: When COVID-19 arrived in rural America," 6 May 2020 The reverend also encouraged Maui residents to refuse incoming boats and to quarantine those who started showing symptoms of smallpox, per Ke Ola. Theresa Machemer, Smithsonian Magazine, "Archaeologists Unearth Remnants of Kitchen Behind Oldest House Still Standing in Maui," 25 Mar. 2020 After the killing of Floyd, Mason walked around town to gauge interest for an event, and visited the local chaplain who recommended a black reverend to speak. Kate Smith, CBS News, "Black Lives Matter protests extend into America's suburbs and towns," 9 June 2020 Meanwhile, news spreads of an unexpected visitor — a guest of the local reverend. Meg Medina, New York Times, "A Deaf Girl Finds Her Voice in 19th-Century Martha’s Vineyard," 27 Apr. 2020 And yet the reverend’s diary reveals not agitation but a measured and stately piety, an aspirational calm. Katy Waldman, The New Yorker, "Dear Diary, the World Is Burning," 10 Apr. 2020 Loud sobbing reported from under reverend Bayes' grave stone. Beth Mole, Ars Technica, "Experts demolish studies suggesting COVID-19 is no worse than flu," 24 Apr. 2020 The reverend speaks: No surprise here, but Giants outfielder Hunter Pence had some inspirational words on enduring the coronavirus crisis. Henry Schulman,, "Giants Splash: History suggests fans will give team a break, for 5 minutes," 25 Mar. 2020 But von Sydow brings a fascinating earnestness to the role of a stiff reverend who volunteers for this important religious endeavor, but needs to find someone to marry first. Scott Tobias, New York Times, "Max von Sydow: Where to Stream 13 of His Best Movies," 9 Mar. 2020

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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Time Traveler for reverend

Time Traveler

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

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Cite this Entry

“Reverend.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 18 Sep. 2020.

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English Language Learners Definition of reverend

: a priest or minister in the Christian church


rev·​er·​end | \ ˈre-və-rənd How to pronounce reverend (audio) , ˈrev-rənd \

Kids Definition of reverend

1 : worthy of honor and respect
2 used as a title for a member of the clergythe Reverend John Doethe Reverend Jane Doe

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