The men of God's lot or inheritance. In St. Peter's first
epistle (ch. v. 3) the Church is called “God's
heritage” or lot. In the Old Testament the tribe of Levi is called
the “lot or heritage of the Lord.” (Greek, Latin, clerus and
clericus, whence Norman clerex and clerkus; French,
Benefit of clergy.
Source: Dictionary of Phrase and Fable, E. Cobham Brewer, 1894
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