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From: Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary (1913)

 Hom·i·ly n.; pl. Homilies
 1. A discourse or sermon read or pronounced to an audience; a serious discourse.
 2. A serious or tedious exhortation in private on some moral point, or on the conduct of life.
 As I have heard my father
 Deal out in his long homilies.   --Byron.
 Book of Homilies. A collection of authorized, printed sermons, to be read by ministers in churches, esp. one issued in the time of Edward VI., and a second, issued in the reign of Elizabeth; -- both books being certified to contain a “godly and wholesome doctrine.”