One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
A candidate, especially one seeking admission into a religious order.
novice, starter, learner, student, pupil, trainee, apprentice, probationerView synonyms
- ‘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.’
- ‘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.’
Mid 18th century: from French postulant or Latin postulant- ‘asking’, from the verb postulare (see postulate).
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