From BiblePortal Wikipedia

Webster's Dictionary [1]

(1): ( a.) Common; customary; usual.

(2): ( n.) An officer who has original jurisdiction in his own right, and not by deputation.

(3): ( n.) A dining room or eating house where a meal is prepared for all comers, at a fixed price for the meal, in distinction from one where each dish is separately charged; a table d'hote; hence, also, the meal furnished at such a dining room.

(4): ( a.) According to established order; methodical; settled; regular.

(5): ( n.) Anything which is in ordinary or common use.

(6): ( a.) Of common rank, quality, or ability; not distinguished by superior excellence or beauty; hence, not distinguished in any way; commonplace; inferior; of little merit; as, men of ordinary judgment; an ordinary book.

(7): ( n.) That which is so common, or continued, as to be considered a settled establishment or institution.

(8): ( n.) A charge or bearing of simple form, one of nine or ten which are in constant use. The bend, chevron, chief, cross, fesse, pale, and saltire are uniformly admitted as ordinaries. Some authorities include bar, bend sinister, pile, and others. See Subordinary.

(9): ( n.) One who has immediate jurisdiction in matters ecclesiastical; an ecclesiastical judge; also, a deputy of the bishop, or a clergyman appointed to perform divine service for condemned criminals and assist in preparing them for death.

(10): ( n.) The mass; the common run.

(11): ( n.) A judicial officer, having generally the powers of a judge of probate or a surrogate.

King James Dictionary [2]

OR'DINARY, a. L. ordinarius.

1. According to established order methodical regular customary as the ordinary forms of law or justice. 2. Common usual.

Method is not less requisite in ordinary conversation than in writing.

3. Of common rank not distinguished by superior excellence as an ordinary reader men of ordinary judgment. 4. Plain not handsome as an ordinary woman a person of an ordinary form an ordinary face. 5. Inferior of little merit as, the book is an ordinary performance. 6. An ordinary seaman is one not expert or fully skilled.


1. In the common and canon law, one who has ordinary or immediate jurisdiction in matters ecclesiastical an ecclesiastical judge. In England, the bishop of the diocese is commonly the ordinary, and the archbishop is the ordinary of the whole province. The ordinary of assizes and sessions was formerly a deputy of the bishop, appointed to give malefactors their neck-verses. The ordinary of Newgate is one who attends on condemned malefactors to prepare them for death. 2. Settled establishment. 3. Regular price of a meal. 4. A place of eating where the prices are settled. 5. The establishment of persons employed by government to take charge of ships of war laid up in harbors. Hence a ship in ordinary is one laid up under the direction of the master attendant.

In ordinary, in actual and constant service statedly attending and serving as a physician or chaplain in ordinary. An embassador in ordinary, is one constantly resident at a foreign court.

Cyclopedia of Biblical, Theological and Ecclesiastical Literature [3]

(Lat. ordinarius) is a word used in common and canon law to designate one who has regular or immediate jurisdiction, in opposition to those who are extraordinarily appointed. In England the bishops: conmonly the ordinary fora diocese, and the archbishop for a province. Says Coke, in his Second Institute, p 398, "This word signifieth a bishop, or he or they iht have ordinary jurisdiction, and is derived ab'ordine and gives this quaint reason, that the name was selected for the purpose of keeping the individual who bears it in perpetual remembrance of "the high order and office that he is called unto." When the word is used at the present day, it generally, denotes either the individual who has the right to grant letters of administration of the effects of deceased persons, or him who has the right of ecclesiastical visitation. The ordinary of assizes and sessions was formerly a deputy of the bishop appointed to give malefactors the neck- verse i.e. the verse which was read by a party to entitle him to the benefit of clergy. The ordinary of Newgate is a clergyman who attends on condemned culprits, and, as it is commonly expressed, prepares them for death.