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Related to Dominicans: Franciscans, Jesuits


Dominicans (dəmĭnˈĭkənz), Roman Catholic religious order, founded by St. Dominic in 1216, officially named the Order of Preachers (O.P.). Although they began locally in evangelizing the Albigenses, before St. Dominic's death (1221) there were already eight national provinces. The rule and constitutions had novel features. For the first time the members of the order (friars) were accepted not into a specific house but into the whole order. The friar's life was to be one of preaching and study; the order provided houses of study at centers of learning. Unlike that of most orders, the Dominican plan of government is nonpaternalistic. Priors of houses and provinces are elected for specific terms, and they do not receive the honor and prestige accorded an abbot. Dominicans were prominent in the medieval universities; St. Thomas Aquinas was a Dominican, and the order has zealously propagated Thomism. It has been often called on to provide official theologians; this fact, as well as the coincidence of origin, accounts for the Dominicans being the order principally in charge of the Inquisition. In the 19th cent. the Dominicans had a revival in France and Great Britain, becoming leaders in Catholic social movements. Dominicans established themselves in the United States soon after 1800; their first U.S. province was founded in 1805. The Dominicans are especially attached to the rosary. Their habit is white, with a black mantle that is worn for preaching. They used to be called Black Friars. Dominicans are the seventh largest order. There is a contemplative order of Dominican nuns and a widespread third order, many of whose members are engaged in teaching.


See studies by R. F. Bennett (1937, repr. 1971), W. A. Hinnebusch (1966), and G. Bedouelle (tr. M. T. Noble, 1987).

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The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.



the population of the Dominican Republic. Total number, 4.3 million (1970 estimate). Anthropologically, the Dominicans are a heterogeneous population, approximately 70 percent of whom are mulattoes (descendants of the settlers from Spain and the Negroes who were imported from Africa from the beginning of the 16th century to the 19th century to work on the plantations). Approximately 15 percent are Negroes, who live primarily in the southern and southeastern parts of the country. The whites, who are mainly the descendants of Spanish colonists who came to the West Indies between the 16th and 18th centuries, as well as of later settlers from North America and European countries, make up about 15 percent of the population.

Most Dominicans speak Spanish colored by features of local dialects. In addition to Spanish, some of the emigrants from Haiti continue to use the Creole language, which is based on French. The overwhelming majority of Dominicans are Catholic.


Narody Ameriki, vol. 2. Moscow, 1959.



(Late Latin: Dominicani, or Fratres Praedicatores, “Preaching Friars”), a Catholic “mendicant” monastic order; founded in 1215 by the Spanish monk Dominic (who took an active part in crushing the Albigensian movement) to combat heretics; the order was confirmed by Pope Honorius III in 1216.

In 1227 the Dominicans received the right of universal preaching and confession, and in 1232 the papacy entrusted them with conducting the Inquisition. They became the papacy’s chief support against heresies and in its clashes with imperial authority, with local church hierarchies, with cities, and with universities. The Dominicans attributed particular importance to control by the Catholic Church in the sphere of upbringing and education; they founded their own educational institutions (in Bologna, Cologne, Oxford, etc.) and were in charge of departments of theology in the universities of Paris, Padua, Prague, and elsewhere. Outstanding among the Dominicans were such prominent figures in medieval Catholicism as Albertus Magnus and Thomas Aquinas. In the 13th century the Dominicans began to develop extensive missionary activities and founded many monasteries (for example, near Kiev, in Iran, and in China. In the 16th century (from the time of the founding of the Jesuit Order) the Dominicans gradually began to lose their former importance. In 1971 the Dominican Order numbered more than 9,000 monks and about 6,000 nuns; it is an ideological and political tool of the Vatican.


The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
References in periodicals archive ?
The Dominicans run parishes, schools and universities, hospitals, think tanks, philosophical and theological formation houses, and pastoral ministries.
Dominicans also run two general hospitals (UST and Aquinas in Legazpi), a charity hospital (San Martin de Porres in San Juan).
Many Dominican national surveys reflect Dominicans' attitudes towards Haitian immigration.
Morgan and Espinal conducted a national survey, published in 2010, that investigates Dominicans' perceptions of Haitian immigrants.
National women's volleyball team quest to proceed to the next round of the FIVB World Championship was dealt a major blow after succumbing to Dominican Republic 3-0 ( 25-5, 25-7, 25-15 ) in their last Pool 'D' match at the Hamamatsu Arena, Japan yesterday.
Serbia, Brazil, Dominican Republic and Puerto Rico will now proceed to the next round.
Examining intergenerational DPR kinship networks allows us to explore the ways in which Dominicans and Puerto Ricans experience cultural cross-fertilizations, build kin relations and networks for mutual care across ethnic lines, and raise children who navigate and embody Dominican and Puerto Rican cultural registers.
In my phone interview, he shared stories about the early academies, remarked on the evolution of them, and discussed the excitement Dominicans bring to the game.
The Dominican Republic's tumultuous history of occupation by other nations ended in 1844 when it declared its independence from Haiti.
(4) Over the three-day course of this race-charged genocide an estimated 20,000 Haitians and Dominicans of Haitian descent were killed.
As a graduate student, he was a Fulbright scholar in the Dominican Republic, and has since made several extended visits to the country.