Definition of ex cathedra in English:

ex cathedra

adverb & adjective

  • With the full authority of office (especially that of the Pope, implying infallibility as defined in Roman Catholic doctrine)

    as adverb ‘for an encyclical to be infallible the Pope must speak ex cathedra’
    as adjective ‘this papal judgement is not ex cathedra’
    lawful, legitimate, licit, within the law, legalized, valid


Latin, ‘from the (teacher's) chair’, from ex ‘from’ and cathedra ‘seat’ (from Greek kathedra).


ex cathedra

/ˌɛks kəˈθiːdrə/