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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).


  • IPA(key): /ˈkɹɪsən/
  • (file)
  • Rhymes: -ɪsən


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

  1. (transitive) To perform the religious act of baptism upon; to baptize.
    The new baby was christened at the village church.
  2. (transitive, by extension) 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.
    1657, Jeremy Taylor, Discourse of the Nature, Offices and Measures of Friendship
    • I must tell you that christianity hath new christened it
  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 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
  • Rhymes: -ɪstən


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

  1. Christian

Derived terms[edit]

Related terms[edit]


  • Negerhollands: christ
  • Caribbean Javanese: Kristen