What does the word novitiate mean?

Usage examples for novitiate

  1. He was sent for to fire a valuable horse, and gives the following account of it: It was my first essay in firing on my own account, and fired as I was with my wishes to signalize myself, I labored to enter my novitiate with all due honor. – The American Reformed Cattle Doctor by George Dadd
  2. Six months before his advent amongst us our sweet- faced sister had taken, the black veil; had she been in her novitiate I might by personal application to his Holiness have granted his prayer. – A Heart-Song of To-day by Annie Gregg Savigny
  3. By the way, the boy's a novitiate in Category Religion. – Frigid Fracas by Dallas McCord Reynolds