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A plaque bearing the Latin text of the Lord's prayer or paternoster in the Church of the Pater Noster on the Mount of Olives in Jerusalem. The church is said to stand on the site where Jesus taught the prayer.
A paternoster elevator in Frankfurt, Germany


From Latin Pater noster (our father) (the first two words of the Oratio Dominica (the Lord's prayer)), from pater (father) + noster (our). The fishing equipment is named from its resemblance to a rosary.



paternoster (plural paternosters)

  1. (Christianity) The Lord's prayer, especially in a Roman Catholic context.
    Pater noster, qui es in caelis, sanctificetur nomen tuum. Adveniat regnum tuum. Fiat voluntas tua, sicut in caelo et in terra. Panem nostrum quotidianum da nobis hodie, et dimitte nobis debita nostra sicut et nos dimittimus debitoribus nostris. Et ne nos inducas in tentationem, sed libera nos a malo. Amen.
    Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name. Your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth, as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread, and forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil. Amen.
  2. A slow, continuously moving lift or elevator consisting of a loop of open-fronted cabins running the height of a building, the arrangement resembling a rosary. The moving compartment is entered at one level and left when the desired level is reached.
  3. (architecture) A bead-like ornament in mouldings.
  4. (fishing) A tackle rig with a heavy sinker at the end of the line, and one or more hooks on traces at right angles spaced above the sinker.
    • 2011, Jamin Forbes, “Tackle”, in Cod Cod Cod, Croydon, Vic.: Australian Fishing Network, →ISBN, page 56:
      A paternoster is any style of hook rig where the hook(s) are on droppers above a fixed sinker. One or two hooks are used on a paternoster rig. The droppers are tied using dropper loops tied directly in the line. The twisted dropper is an ideal knot as it stands out at right angles to the line.
    • 2012, Peter Kaminsky; Greg Schwipps; Dominic Garnett, Fishing for Dummies, UK edition, Chichester, West Sussex: John Wiley & Sons, →ISBN:
      In plain terms, the paternoster is a rig with the weight at the bottom and hook traces (sometimes called snoods by sea anglers) attached above in fixed positions. Besides a tidy presentation, this arrangement allows the sea angler to try more than one bait and you'll often find paternosters with two hooks (or even three or four). Effectively this allows us to hedge our bets and try more baits (which could be the same or different types), thereby increasing the scent and attraction.
    • 2016, D[avid] A. Weaver, Sea Angling Rig Book, rev. edition, [s.l.]: M. P. Dawn Publications:
      PATERNOSTER TWIN This rig is slightly more complicated than the single paternoster, however this rig has the added advantage of having two hooks, these can be different sizes and be baited with different baits.
  5. (Christianity, archaic) A string of beads used in counting prayers that are said; a rosary.
  6. (Christianity, archaic) Every eleventh bead in a rosary, at which, while counting the beads, the Lord's Prayer is to be repeated.
  7. (Christianity, archaic) A medieval artisan who crafted rosary beads or prayer nuts.
  8. (archaic) A patent medicine, so named because salesmen would pray the Lord's Prayer over it before selling it.

Derived termsEdit



paternoster (third-person singular simple present paternosters, present participle paternostering, simple past and past participle paternostered)

  1. (fishing, transitive) To try to catch (fish, etc.) with a paternoster rig.

Further readingEdit