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Clerk [Either OF. clerc, fr. L. clericus a priest, or AS. clerc, cleric, clerk, priest, fr. L. clericus, fr. Gr. belonging to the clergy, fr. lot, allotment, clergy; cf. Deut. xviii. 2. Cf. Clergy.]


A clergyman or ecclesiastic.


All persons were styled clerks that served in the church of Christ. Ayliffe.


A man who could read; a scholar; a learned person; a man of letters.

[Obs.] "Every one that could read . . . being accounted a clerk."


He was no great clerk, but he was perfectly well versed in the interests of Europe. Burke.


A parish officer, being a layman who leads in reading the responses of the Episcopal church service, and otherwise assists in it.



And like unlettered clerk still cry "Amen". Shak.


One employed to keep records or accounts; a scribe; an accountant; as, the clerk of a court; a town clerk.

The clerk of the crown . . . withdrew the bill. Strype.

⇒ In some cases, clerk is synonymous with secretary. A clerk is always an officer subordinate to a higher officer, board, corporation, or person; whereas a secretary may be either a subordinate or the head of an office or department.


An assistant in a shop or store.

[U. S.]


© Webster 1913.