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Is there a word for someone who says prayers?

P.S. I googled the phrase "someone who says prayers", assuming that if there were a definition for such a word in online dictionaries, it would be indexed in Google databases, but I got nothing! If the way I searched for an unknown word is not efficient and you know a better approach, please let me know.

  • This strikes me as something that would depend on the context. Ramit's suggested answer might apply in certain cases, but not in others. Are you looking to refer to all people who (ever) say prayers? – Tyler James Young Aug 12 '13 at 17:24
  • @TylerJamesYoung Yes, I would like to refer to just someone, anyone, who says prayers not because its their duty, but in order to satisfy the thing they worship. For example, consider this context: "Almost in all religions, the followers believe that their God likes those who say prayers the most." That would be nice if we could replace the phrase "those who say prayers" with a single word (let's say "prayerers"!) – user1555 Aug 12 '13 at 17:38
  • You could say pray-er – Daniel Aug 12 '13 at 20:39
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There's the word supplicant, but I don't think that can be applied universally.

The word means "someone who requests something," and it can indeed be applied to people who ask God for something in prayer.

However, there are also prayers of praise, and prayers of thankgiving, and I don't think it would be accurate to call someone a supplicant if the person was only offering a prayer of thanks.

A more broadly applicable word would be precant, but it's not a commonly-used word.

  • Thank you J.R. Precant is exactly the word I was looking for (although, as you said, it's not common). May I ask how you found that word? – user1555 Aug 12 '13 at 18:21
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    OneLook's Reverse Dictionary. – J.R. Aug 12 '13 at 18:51
  • Another term for someone who prays for others: Intercessor – user42247 Sep 25 '16 at 9:05
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The word "prayer" means "a person who prays". See http://www.thefreedictionary.com/prayer, definition 2. (The third block, not #2 under one of the first two blocks.)

Note that when spoken, "prayer" as a person is pronounced pray-er or pray-or, two syllables, while "prayer" as the thing you say is pronounced "prar", one syllable. But in print they are spelled the same. This may be confusing if the sentence is not clearly worded. (If I found it difficult to word the sentence to make the intended meaning obvious, I might write "pray-er" to make it clear. Consider a sentence like, "God blesses both the prayer and the prayer", meaning both the words and the person who says them. Someone reading that without having just read a discussion of the word "prayer" might well say, "Huh?" But if I wrote "... the prayer and the pray-er", they'd probably get the idea.)

In the context you are using, we often say things like "a praying person" or "a person who prays".

If you were talking about someone who stands in front of a church or other group to recite a prayer, he is sometimes called "the prayer leader", even though he's not really "leading" anyone, he's just saying a prayer by himself.

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    Congratulations: after reading your post, prayer no longer looks like a real word. Semantic satiation achieved. :) – Martha Aug 13 '13 at 17:39
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I was just asking myself this very question, which brought be here. Supplicant is good, but worshiper is the word that comes to mind as commonly describing those who pray, esp. when attending formal services.

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If it is a person who is uttering prayers for an audience, then he is a Preacher. If a person who utters prayers for his personal reasons, he is a Worshiper

protected by J.R. Sep 25 '16 at 9:43

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