Search Result for "clergy": 
Wordnet 3.0

NOUN (1)

1. in Christianity, clergymen collectively (as distinguished from the laity);

The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48:

Clergy \Cler"gy\, n. [OE. clergie, clergi, clerge, OF. clergie, F. clergie (fr. clerc clerc, fr. L. clericus priest) confused with OF. clergi['e], F. clerg['e], fr. LL. clericatus office of priest, monastic life, fr. L. clericus priest, LL. scholar, clerc. Both the Old French words meant clergy, in sense 1, the former having also sense 2. See Clerk.] [1913 Webster] 1. The body of men set apart, by due ordination, to the service of God, in the Christian church, in distinction from the laity; in England, usually restricted to the ministers of the Established Church. --Hooker. [1913 Webster] 2. Learning; also, a learned profession. [Obs.] [1913 Webster] Sophictry . . . rhetoric, and other cleargy. --Guy of Warwick. [1913 Webster] Put their second sons to learn some clergy. --State Papers (1515). [1913 Webster] 3. The privilege or benefit of clergy. [1913 Webster] If convicted of a clergyable felony, he is entitled equally to his clergy after as before conviction. --Blackstone. [1913 Webster] Benefit of clergy (Eng., Law), the exemption of the persons of clergymen from criminal process before a secular judge -- a privilege which was extended to all who could read, such persons being, in the eye of the law, clerici, or clerks. This privilege was abridged and modified by various statutes, and finally abolished in the reign of George IV. (1827). Regular clergy, Secular clergy See Regular, n., and Secular, a. [1913 Webster]
WordNet (r) 3.0 (2006):

clergy n 1: in Christianity, clergymen collectively (as distinguished from the laity) [ant: laity, temporalty]