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See also: Apostle


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Etymology 1[edit]

From Middle English apostle, from Old French apostle, from Late Latin apostolus, from Ancient Greek ἀπόστολος (apóstolos, one sent forth, apostle). Merged with Old English apostol, borrowing from the same Latin source.


apostle (plural apostles)

  1. A missionary, or leader of a religious mission, especially one in the early Christian Church (but see Apostle).
  2. A pioneer or early advocate of a particular cause, prophet of a belief.
    • 1895–1897, H[erbert] G[eorge] Wells, “The Eve of the War”, in The War of the Worlds, London: William Heinemann, published 1898, →OCLC, book I (The Coming of the Martians), pages 4–5:
      [W]e must remember what ruthless and utter destruction our own species has wrought, not only upon animals, such as the vanished bison and the dodo, but upon its own inferior races. The Tasmanians, in spite of their human likeness, were entirely swept out of existence in a war of extermination waged by European immigrants, in the space of fifty years. Are we such apostles of mercy as to complain if the Martians warred in the same spirit?
  3. A top-ranking ecclesiastical official in the twelve seat administrative council of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
  4. (obsolete, Cambridge slang) A person who is plucked, that is, refused an academic degree.[1]
Derived terms[edit]
The translations below need to be checked and inserted above into the appropriate translation tables. See instructions at Wiktionary:Entry layout § Translations.

Etymology 2[edit]

See apostil.


apostle (plural apostles)

  1. (law) A letter dismissory.
  2. (law) A note sent to an appeals court presenting the appeal in summary.
  3. (law) The trial court record sent to an appeal court concerning an appeal.


  1. ^ John S. Farmer & W. E. Henley, Slang and Its Analogues Past and Present, →ISBN, https://books.google.com/books?id=tNttOhz6_s8C


Old French[edit]

Alternative forms[edit]


Borrowed from Late Latin apostolus, from Ancient Greek ἀπόστολος (apóstolos, one sent forth, apostle).


apostle oblique singularm (oblique plural apostles, nominative singular apostles, nominative plural apostle)

  1. apostle
    • c. 1100,, Chanson de Roland:
      Recleimet Deu e l’apostle de Rome
      Imploring God and the apostle of Rome


  • English: apostle
  • French: apôtre
  • Norman: apôtre