Tonsure Ton"sure, n. [F., fr. L. tonsura a shearing, clipping, from tondere, tonsum, to shear, shave; cf. Gr. ? to gnaw; perhaps akin to Gr. ? to cut, and E. tome.] 1. The act of clipping the hair, or of shaving the crown of the head; also, the state of being shorn. [1913 Webster]

2. (R. C. Ch.) (a) The first ceremony used for devoting a person to the service of God and the church; the first degree of the clericate, given by a bishop, abbot, or cardinal priest, consisting in cutting off the hair from a circular space at the back of the head, with prayers and benedictions; hence, entrance or admission into minor orders. (b) The shaven corona, or crown, which priests wear as a mark of their order and of their rank. [1913 Webster]

The Collaborative International Dictionary of English. 2000.

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  • tonsure — [ tɔ̃syr ] n. f. • 1245; lat. tonsura ♦ Petit cercle rasé au sommet de la tête des ecclésiastiques. Porter la tonsure. ♢ Fam. Calvitie circulaire au sommet de la tête. ● tonsure nom féminin (latin tonsura, de tondere, tondre) Espace rasé… …   Encyclopédie Universelle

  • Tonsure — • A sacred rite instituted by the Church by which a baptized and confirmed Christian is received into the clerical order Catholic Encyclopedia. Kevin Knight. 2006. Tonsure     Tonsure      …   Catholic encyclopedia

  • tonsure — Tonsure. s. f. Ceremonie de l Eglise, par laquelle celuy à qui l Evesque coupe les cheveux, entre dans la clericature, & devient capable d estre admis aux Ordres sacrez, & de posseder des Benefices. Tonsure clericale. donner la tonsure. des… …   Dictionnaire de l'Académie française

  • tonsuré — tonsuré, ée (ton su ré, rée) part. passé de tonsurer. •   Je demande un petit bénéfice au roi pour un fils de Mme de Montchevreuil qui a quinze ans, qui est tonsuré, MAINTENON Lett. à l abbé Gobelin, 1676, t. II, p. 57, dans POUGENS..… …   Dictionnaire de la Langue Française d'Émile Littré

  • tonsure — (n.) late 14c., shaving of the head or part of it as a religious rite, from Anglo Fr. tonsure (mid 14c.), from O.Fr. tonsure (14c.), from L. tonsura a shearing, clipping, from tonsus, pp. of tondere to shear, shave, from PIE *tend , from root… …   Etymology dictionary

  • tonsuré — Tonsuré. part. passif. Clerc tonsuré …   Dictionnaire de l'Académie française

  • tonsure — ► NOUN ▪ a part of a monk s or priest s head left bare on top by shaving off the hair. ► VERB ▪ give a tonsure to. ORIGIN Latin tonsura, from tondere shear, clip …   English terms dictionary

  • tonsure — [tän′shər] n. [ME < MFr < L tonsura < tonsus: see TONSORIAL] 1. a clipping off or shaving off of part or all of the hair of the head, done esp. formerly as a signal of entrance into the clerical or monastic state 2. the head area so… …   English World dictionary

  • Tonsure — Roman tonsure Tonsure is the traditional practice of Christian churches of cutting or shaving the hair from the scalp of clerics, monastics, and, in the Eastern Orthodox Church, all baptized members. Tonsure, usually qualified by the name of the… …   Wikipedia

  • tonsure — /ton sheuhr/, n., v., tonsured, tonsuring. n. 1. the act of cutting the hair or shaving the head. 2. the shaving of the head or of some part of it as a religious practice or rite, esp. in preparation for entering the priesthood or a monastic… …   Universalium

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