Definition from Wiktionary, the free dictionary
Jump to navigation Jump to search


Alternative forms[edit]


Middle English, borrowed from Old French enoint, past participle of enoindre, from Latin inungere, from in + ungere, unguere (to smear; to anoint), from Proto-Indo-European *h₃engʷ- (anoint).



anoint (third-person singular simple present anoints, present participle anointing, simple past and past participle anointed)

  1. (transitive) To smear or rub over with oil or an unctuous substance; also, to spread over, as oil.
    • And fragrant oils the stiffened limbs anoint. —Dryden.
    • He anointed the eyes of the blind man with the clay. —John ix. 6.
  2. (transitive) To apply oil to or to pour oil upon, etc., as a sacred rite, especially for consecration.
    • Then shalt thou take the anointing oil, and pour it upon his [Aaron's] head and anoint him. —Exod. xxix. 7.
    • Anoint Hazael to be king over Syria. —1 Kings xix. 15.
  3. (transitive, figuratively) To choose or nominate somebody for a leading or otherwise important position, especially formally or officially, or as an intended successor.
  4. (transitive, historical) To mark somebody as an official ruler, especially a king or queen, as a part of a religious ceremony.


Derived terms[edit]

Related terms[edit]


Further reading[edit]