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See also: Disciple




From Middle English disciple, discipul, from Old English discipul m (disciple; scholar) and discipula f (female disciple), both from Latin discipulus (a pupil, learner), from discere (to learn); akin to docere (to teach). Later influenced or superseded in Middle English by Old French deciple.



disciple (plural disciples)

  1. A person who learns from another, especially one who then teaches others.
  2. An active follower or adherent of someone, or some philosophy etc.
    • Holy Bible, Matthew 9:10 (King James Version)
      And it came to pass, as Jesus sat at meat in the house, behold, many publicans and sinners came and sat down with him and his disciples.
    • 1922, Ben Travers, chapter 4, in A Cuckoo in the Nest:
      By some paradoxical evolution rancour and intolerance have been established in the vanguard of primitive Christianity. Mrs. Spoker, in common with many of the stricter disciples of righteousness, was as inclement in demeanour as she was cadaverous in aspect.
  3. (Ireland) Miserable-looking creature of a man.


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disciple (third-person singular simple present disciples, present participle discipling, simple past and past participle discipled)

  1. (religion, transitive) To convert (a person) into a disciple.
  2. (religion, transitive) To train, educate, teach.
    • 1590, Edmund Spenser, The Faerie Queene, IV.i:
      fraile youth is oft to follie led, / Through false allurement of that pleasing baite, / That better were in vertues discipled []

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From Old French deciple, borrowed from Latin discipulus.



disciple m (plural disciples)

  1. disciple

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