Definition of prebendary in English:



  • 1An honorary canon.

    ‘Cathedrals which were not monastic foundations, and collegiate churches, were served by secular clergy, the canons or prebendaries, who constituted the capitular body or chapter.’
    ‘It was an emotional moment in a moving funeral service conducted by the prebendary at Wells Cathedral, Somerset.’
    1. 1.1historical A canon of a cathedral or collegiate church whose income originally came from a prebend.
      • ‘In 1741 he became a prebendary of York Cathedral, and married Elizabeth Lumley, a cousin of Elizabeth Montagu, but his domestic and family life was not happy, and of their several children all were stillborn but a daughter, Lydia.’
      • ‘He was appointed to the curacy of Brampton, near Wakefield in 1772, eventually becoming prebendary of Lincoln cathedral from 1786 until his death.’
      • ‘This year is the 300th anniversary of his appointment as the prebendary of Dunalvin.’
      • ‘In 1780, he was installed prebendary at Carlisle, and resigned Appleby on becoming archdeacon in 1782.’


Late Middle English from medieval Latin praebendarius, from late Latin praebenda ‘pension’ (see prebend).