1 rare A traitor; a person who betrays someone or something.
Now only as a conscious translation of, or with reference to, Latin traditor.
In the early Christian church: a person who surrendered sacred books and vessels or betrayed fellow Christians in times of persecution to save his or her own life.
Especially with reference to the African church at the time of the persecution under the emperor Diocletian in the early 4th century.
3A person who transmits or sustains a tradition, especially (in later use) an oral tradition. rare before 20th century.
Late Middle English; earliest use found in Knyghthode and Bataile. From classical Latin trāditor person who hands over, traitor, betrayer, in post-classical Latin also teacher (early 3rd century in Tertullian), person who hands over sacred books to their persecutors from trādit-, past participial stem of trādere + -or.