views updated May 14 2018

mitre a tall headdress worn by bishops and senior abbots as a symbol of office, tapering to a point at front and back with a deep cleft between. Recorded from late Middle English, the word comes from Old French via Latin from Greek mitra ‘belt or turban’.

In the Anglican Church after the Reformation down to the time of George III, while the mitre was theoretically part of the episcopal insignia, it was generally only worn at coronations. More recently, however, its use has been revived for ceremonial occasions.

Three mitres are the emblem of St Bernardino of Siena.


views updated May 23 2018

mitre. Junction of two members at right angles involving chamfers or mouldings meeting at a diagonal line. See also arch, mason's mitre.


views updated May 29 2018

mitre ceremonial episcopal head-dress XIV; joint between boards meeting at right angles XVII. — (O)F. — L. mitra — Gr. mitrā girdle, headband, turban.


views updated May 11 2018

Mitre (Gk., mitra, ‘turban’). The head-dress of a Christian bishop, worn on liturgical or ceremonial occasions.