- The definition of pastoral is something associated with or related to country life.
An example of pastoral is a painting of a farm.
A lovely pastoral scene.
- of shepherds or their work, way of life, etc.
- of or portraying rural life or, formerly, a highly conventionalized form of rustic life among shepherds, usually in an idealized way
- of pastoral literature or a pastoral
- characteristic of rural life, idealized as peaceful, simple, and natural
- of or relating to a pastor
Origin of pastoralMiddle English pastoralle ; from Classical Latin pastoralis ; from pastor, a shepherd: see pastor
- a piece of literature dealing, usually in an idealized way, with rural life; formerly, specif., a poem, play, etc. treating the rustic lives and loves of shepherds in a conventionalized, artificial manner
- such writing as a literary form
- a pastoral picture or scene
- an official letter or document, as on doctrine or religious observance, issued by a bishop or group of bishops to persons within their jurisdiction
- Music pastorale
- a. Of or relating to shepherds or herders.b. Of, relating to, or used for animal husbandry.
- a. Of or relating to the country or country life; rural.b. Charmingly simple and serene; idyllic. See Synonyms at rural.
- Of, relating to, or being a literary or other artistic work that portrays or evokes rural life, usually in an idealized way.
- Of or relating to a pastor or the duties of a pastor: pastoral duties; a pastoral letter.
- A literary or other artistic work that portrays or evokes rural life, usually in an idealized way.
- Music A pastorale.
Origin of pastoralMiddle English, from Old French, from Latin pāstōrālis, from pāstor, shepherd; see pastor.
Shepherdess with her Sheep by Franz Marc
(comparative more pastoral, superlative most pastoral)
- Of or pertaining to shepherds; hence, relating to rural life and scenes; as, a pastoral life.
- He wanders west as far as Memphis, a solitary migrant upon that flat and pastoral landscape. - 1985 McCarthy, Blood Meridian, chapter
- [...] these pastoral farms,/Green to the very door; and wreaths of smoke / Sent up, in silence, from among the trees! - 1798 Wordsworth, Tintern Abbey, lines 16-18.
- Relating to the care of souls, or to the pastor of a church; as, pastoral duties; a pastoral letter.
- A poem describing the life and manners of shepherds; a poem in which the speakers assume the character of shepherds; an idyll; a bucolic.
- (music) A cantata relating to rural life; a composition for instruments characterized by simplicity and sweetness; a lyrical composition the subject of which is taken from rural life. Moore
- (religion, Christianity) A letter of a pastor to his charge; specifically, a letter addressed by a bishop to his diocese.
- (religion, Christianity) A letter of the House of Bishops, to be read in each parish.