WordReference Random House Unabridged Dictionary of American English © 2019
Cath•ar  (kathär),USA pronunciation n., pl.  -a•ri (-ə rī′),USA pronunciation  -ars. 
    (in medieval Europe) a member of any of several rigorously ascetic Christian sects maintaining a dualistic theology. Also called  Cath•a•rist  (kathər ist).USA pronunciation  Catha•rism, n. 
    Cath′a•ristic, adj. 
    • Late Greek hoi Katharoí Novatians, literally, the pure; applied in Medieval Latin to various sects
    • Late Latin Catharī (plural)
    • 1630–40

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