hierarchy
noun (plural -chies) Etymology: Middle English ierarchie rank or order of holy beings, from Anglo-French jerarchie, from Medieval Latin hierarchia, from Late Greek, from Greek hierarchēs Date: 14th century 1. a division of angels 2. a. a ruling body of clergy organized into orders or ranks each subordinate to the one above it; especially the bishops of a province or nation b. church government by a hierarchy 3. a body of persons in authority 4. the classification of a group of people according to ability or to economic, social, or professional standing; also the group so classified 5. a graded or ranked series <
a hierarchy of values
>

New Collegiate Dictionary. 2001.

Synonyms:

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  • Hierarchy — • This word has been used to denote the totality of ruling powers in the Church, ever since the time of the Pseudo Dionysius Areopagita (sixth century), who consecrated the expression in his works, The Celestial Hierarchy and The Ecclesiastical… …   Catholic encyclopedia

  • hierarchy — hi‧er‧ar‧chy [ˈhaɪrɑːki ǁ ɑːr ] noun hierarchies PLURALFORM 1. [countable, uncountable] HUMAN RESOURCES an organization or structure in which the staff are organized in levels and the people at one level have authority over those below them: •… …   Financial and business terms

  • hierarchy — I (arrangement in a series) noun arrangement, categorization, chain, classification, collocation, distribution, gradation, grouping, order, order of succession, progression, range, run, seriation, series, succession, system II (persons in… …   Law dictionary

  • hierarchy — ► NOUN (pl. hierarchies) 1) a ranking system ordered according to status or authority. 2) an arrangement according to relative importance or inclusiveness. 3) (the hierarchy) the clergy of the Catholic Church or of an episcopal Church. 4)… …   English terms dictionary

  • Hierarchy — Hi er*arch y (h[imac] [ e]r*[aum]rk [y^]), n.; pl. {Hierarchies} (h[imac] [ e]r*[aum]rk [i^]z). [Gr. ierarchi a: cf. F. hi[ e]rarchie.] 1. Dominion or authority in sacred things. [1913 Webster] 2. A body of officials disposed organically in ranks …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • hierarchy — mid 14c., from O.Fr. ierarchie, from M.L. hierarchia ranked division of angels (in the system of Dionysius the Areopagite), from Gk. hierarkhia rule of a high priest, from hierarkhes high priest, leader of sacred rites, from ta hiera the sacred… …   Etymology dictionary

  • hierarchy — [n] order chain of command*, due order, echelons, grouping, pecking order, placing, position, pyramid, ranking, scale; concept 727 …   New thesaurus

  • hierarchy — [hī′ər är΄kē] n. pl. hierarchies [altered (modeled on Gr) < ME ierarchie < OFr jerarchie < ML(Ec) hierarchia < LGr(Ec), power or rule of a hierarch < Gr hierarchēs: see HIERARCH] 1. a system of church government by priests or other …   English World dictionary

  • Hierarchy — A hierarchy (Greek: hierarchia (ἱεραρχία), from hierarches, leader of sacred rites ) is an arrangement of items (objects, names, values, categories, etc.) in which the items are represented as being above, below, or at the same level as one… …   Wikipedia

  • hierarchy — 01. The culture of my country is based upon a [hierarchy], with the King, father, and teacher at the top. 02. The church [hierarchy] seems to be against the progressive notions of many of its followers. 03. Very few women have been able to… …   Grammatical examples in English

  • hierarchy — noun ADJECTIVE ▪ complex ▪ rigid, strict ▪ the rigid class hierarchy of rural society ▪ traditional ▪ existing …   Collocations dictionary

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