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See also: Christen


Alternative forms[edit]


From Middle English cristenen, cristnien, from Old English cristnian (to christen, baptise), from cristen (Christen, Christian) +‎ -nian. Cognate with Dutch kerstenen (to christen), Middle Low German kristenen, kerstenen, karstenen (to christen), Danish kristne (to christen) Swedish kristna (to christen), Icelandic kristna (to christen).



christen (third-person singular simple present christens, present participle christening, simple past and past participle christened)

  1. To perform the religious act of the baptism, to baptise.
    The new baby was christened at the village church.
  2. To name.
    I christen this ship the Bonny Barnacle.
    • 1684-1690, Thomas Burnet, Sacred Theory of the Earth
      Christen the thing what you will.
  3. (obsolete) To Christianize.
    (Can we find and add a quotation of Jeremy Taylor to this entry?)
  4. (colloquial) To use for the first time.
    I christened my new boots today with a walk in the snow.
  5. (informal) To douse or wet with blood, urine, tears, or other liquid.
    • 1892, John Henry Brown, History of Texas; from 1685 to 1892 - Volume 1, page 127:
      Thus was De Witt's colony, like Austin's, at the mouth of the Colorado, christened in blood, and thus for the moment ended the first effort to found a settlement within its limits.
    • 2002: Q Is for Quarry by w:Sue Grafton
      I christened the facilities, shrugged into my windbreaker, and met Dolan at his door.
    • 2005, Linda Sonna, Early-Start Potty Training, page viii:
      Being christened by a urinating bare-bottomed newborn is almost a rite of passage of parenthood.
    • 2010, Stefan Korn, ‎Scott Lancaster, ‎Eric Mooij, Being a Great Dad For Dummies, page 122:
      By the way if, as part of your fatherhood journey, you haven't been vomited on, had poo squirted on you, or been christened with pee yet, you're not trying hard enough.
    • 2012, Glory Keveme, Broken Wings, page Page 51:
      A daddy-long-legs lurched against the white-washed walls while Surefire christened the lime-swilled fresh bucket with a strong stream of urine.




Alternative forms[edit]


From Middle Dutch cristen, variant of kersten, from Old Dutch [Term?], from Latin Christiānus, from Ancient Greek Χρῑστιᾱνός (Khrīstiānós). The current Dutch spelling has been influenced by the Latin and subsequently also the Greek words.


  • IPA(key): /ˈkrɪs.tən/
  • (some orthodox Protestants) IPA(key): /ˈxrɪs.tən/
  • (file)
  • Hyphenation: chris‧ten


christen m (plural christenen, diminutive christentje n, feminine christin)

  1. Christian

Derived terms[edit]

Related terms[edit]