One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
1(in the Roman Catholic Church) a deputy of a bishop or archbishop.
- ‘When it is said that the outside vicars depend immediately on the vicars-general or provisors, one must not, under any consideration, understand that the latter constitute an authority or jurisdiction intermediate between the outside vicar and the archbishop.’
- ‘1351 - In England, Parliament passed the Statute of Provisors. The Pope had been in the habit of appointing ‘provisors’ to benefices (church offices that provided income without necessarily requiring work) in England.’
historical The holder of a provision.
Late Middle English: from Anglo-Norman French provisour, from Latin provisor, from provis- ‘provided’ (see provision).
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