from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition
- n. The office and jurisdiction of a pope.
- n. The period of time during which a pope is in office.
- n. A succession or line of popes: the Medici papacy.
- n. Roman Catholic Church The system of church government headed by the pope.
from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License
- n. The office of the pope.
- n. The period of a particular pope's reign.
from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English
- n. The office and dignity of the pope, or pontiff, of Rome; papal jurisdiction.
- n. The popes, collectively; the succession of popes.
- n. The Roman Catholic religion; -- commonly used by the opponents of the Roman Catholics in disparagement or in an opprobrious sense.
from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- n. The office, dignity, and authority of the Pope or Bishop of Rome; the papal; jurisdiction; the ecclesiastical organization subject to the Pope.
- n. The succession or line of popes, with its ecclesiastical and political traditions.
- n. That system of ecclesiastical government which recognizes and is based upon the apostolic primacy and supreme authority of the Pope or Bishop of Rome over the church universal; the Church of Rome; the Roman Catholic Church.
from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.
- n. the government of the Roman Catholic Church
Middle English papacie, from Medieval Latin pāpātia, from Late Latin pāpa, pope; see pope.(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
Circa 14th century, from Medieval Latin papatia, from Latin papa ("pope") + -tia ("office, rank") (English -cy). (Wiktionary)