The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48:
Parson \Par"son\, n. [OE. persone person, parson, OF. persone,
F. personne person, LL. persona (sc. ecclesiae), fr. L.
persona a person. See Person.]
1. (Eng. Eccl. Law) A person who represents a parish in its
ecclesiastical and corporate capacities; hence, the rector
or incumbent of a parochial church, who has full
possession of all the rights thereof, with the cure of
2. Any clergyman having ecclesiastical preferment; one who is
in orders, or is licensed to preach; a preacher.
He hears the parson pray and preach. --Longfellow.
Parson bird (Zool.), a New Zealand bird (Prosthemadera
Nov[ae]seelandi[ae]) remarkable for its powers of mimicry
and its ability to articulate words. Its color is glossy
black, with a curious tuft of long, curly, white feathers
on each side of the throat. It is often kept as a cage