Definition of postulant in English:



  • A candidate, especially one seeking admission into a religious order.

    • ‘The discussion concerns postulants and candidates for holy orders, more particularly those who aspire to ordained ministry as vocational or permanent deacons.’
    • ‘In order to be accepted as a postulant in a religious community, I must be free of all financial obligations.’
    • ‘On entering the order, postulants spend much of the first year in Killarney, with periods in the Franciscans' base in Osterley in England.’
    • ‘So there are hundreds or even thousands of postulants, novices, seminarians, active priests, and retired priests who live, work, or hang out at American seminaries.’
    • ‘To become a Theravadin monk a postulant shaves his head and beard and adopts the yellow robes of the monk.’
    novice, starter, learner, student, pupil, trainee, apprentice, probationer


Mid 18th century from French postulant or Latin postulant- ‘asking’, from the verb postulare (see postulate).