Definition of high priest in US English:

high priest


  • 1A chief priest of a non-Christian religion.

    • ‘The Druids, the high priests of the Celts, spent twenty years learning the traditions and oral lessons.’
    • ‘According to Chief Obadio, the high priest of Oduduwa in Ife, human sacrifice was offered to the deity in the past.’
    • ‘For support, Alonso relied on his family and, increasingly, on his babalawo, or Santerian high priest.’
    • ‘Only towards the end were they written to fit a full-blown Wiccan coven with high priestess and high priest.’
    • ‘Organised by Benin's main voodoo leader Daagbo Hounon Houna, the festival begins with the clatter of tambourines and continues with hours of incantations by high priests of the religion, who fall into deep trances.’
    1. 1.1 The chief priest of the historic Jewish religion.
      • ‘Inside, behind a great curtain, is the Holy of Holies, where the high priest, like Moses before him, communes with the Lord.’
      • ‘Jerusalem itself was governed by the Jewish high priest, who was responsible to a Roman prefect.’
      • ‘The two main characters involved in Jesus's death are Pontius Pilate, the Roman governor, and Caiaphas, the Jewish high priest.’
      • ‘It was the only day in the Jewish calendar when the high priest could enter the innermost room of the temple - the most holy place.’
      • ‘Mark 14: 66-72 records how, in the court of the high priest, Peter three times denied that he was a disciple of Jesus.’
      authority, expert, specialist, pundit, guru, mentor, adviser, mastermind, connoisseur
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    2. 1.2 A chief advocate of a belief or practice.
      ‘the high priest of the drug culture’
      • ‘And this allows the authorities to set themselves up as the high priests of the new moral anti-racism.’
      • ‘He is a founder of the party and the high priest of its right-wing, low-tax, pro-enterprise economic code.’
      • ‘But who could have foreseen that the man once known as the high priest of UK drugs culture would team up with the singer from the ultimate Scottish teenybop band?’
      • ‘For years, the politicians and their high priests of ‘free markets’ and ‘free trade’ have been telling us that we'd better make sacrifices or our prosperity was in danger.’
      • ‘Goldman Sachs is the arch high priest of the investment banker's temple.’
      • ‘Vanity Fair is the beautiful people's bible and Carter has been described as ‘the high priest of celebrity culture’, so if he's predicting the end of the Age of Affluence we should stop and listen.’
      • ‘Evolution also makes it possible to be ‘an intellectually fulfilled atheist’, according to the high priest of atheism, Richard Dawkins of Oxford University.’
      • ‘Then again, he has been called the high priest of evolution, with Charles Darwin's The Origin of Species as his bible.’
      • ‘The architects of neoliberalism, the high priests of free market fundamentalism, continue to force through destructive policies with all the fervour of religious zealots.’
      • ‘Here was one of the high priests of modern international capitalism speaking.’
      • ‘They claim to be the high priests of tolerance, and yet they practice intolerance against us.’
      • ‘He has wrestled with expansion since 1996, when he took over as CEO from Vanguard founder John C. Bogle, the high priest of low-cost index investing.’
      • ‘The high priests of the market preach a similar doctrine, claiming that money can separate itself from the production process and enter a financial heaven where money endlessly begets money.’
      • ‘Kerr, the former 20-a-day man, is the high priest of this new ideology.’
      • ‘A clergyman's son, Osler became a high priest of modern medicine and contributed greatly to America's rise to international medical prominence.’
      • ‘Over the past 36 years, J.D. ‘Dave’ Power has earned a reputation as high priest of customer satisfaction.’
      • ‘Nor does he realize that markets are far more random and far riskier that he is being made to believe by the high priests of the brokerage industry.’
      • ‘As Pierre Boulez turns 80, some of the world's greatest composers give their verdict on the high priest of modernism’
      • ‘Newton's millenarian enthusiasm, based upon the deeply held notion that human history was orchestrated by God, was matched later in the century by the millennial speculations of the high priest of rational Dissent, Joseph Priestley.’
      • ‘As to be expected, Comte appointed himself as the high priest of the new religion of humanity.’


high priest

/ˈˌhaɪ ˈprist//ˈˌhī ˈprēst/