Definition of christen in English:



  • 1Give (a baby) a Christian name at baptism as a sign of admission to a Christian Church.

    [with object and complement] ‘their second daughter was christened Jeanette’
    • ‘Their baby son will be christened Matthew in memory of his father.’
    • ‘The baby boy was christened John Paul a short time later.’
    • ‘Emily was put on a ventilator and christened in the hospital, but after five weeks doctors said she was strong enough to go home with her parents.’
    • ‘George Eliot, christened Mary Anne Evans, was born on November 22, 1819.’
    • ‘Born in Gisborne on 11 November 1912 and christened Marjorie Iris Somervell, she was just a girl during World War I.’
    • ‘Babies had to be christened in the established Protestant church, couples had to be married there, and everyone had to attend Protestant Sunday services on pain of heavy fines or imprisonment.’
    • ‘This spring water was used in the font in the church to christen babies.’
    • ‘The baby, to be christened Clara Rosa, was born on June 26 and weighed 6lbs 8ozs.’
    • ‘A doting couple travelled 3,000 miles so their baby could be christened in the same cathedral as his mother and grandmother.’
    • ‘Despite my views on God and religion, I felt it important that the kids should be christened in their local church.’
    • ‘The son, christened Joseph William, grew up in Dundas with his mother and five elder sisters, and was one of the first pupils to attend the new Union School, built in 1857.’
    • ‘She was born on June 16, 1886, and christened Helen Nora Wilson Low.’
    • ‘Although christened Maria Philomena, she like to be called by her preferred name, Maureen.’
    • ‘Hundreds of people packed into St Elizabeth's Parish Church in Horwich on Monday - the same church where Byron was christened 18 years ago - to say their final goodbyes.’
    • ‘She had twice asked a vicar to christen the baby.’
    • ‘Now, eight months after their dramatic birth, they are in good health and have been christened at Bury Parish Church.’
    • ‘Babies are christened according to the principles set down by the Lutheran Church of Iceland.’
    • ‘The baby was christened in the Holy Family Church and will be called Niamh Mary.’
    • ‘Bohr, although he had been christened in the Christian Church, had Jewish origins on his mother's side and so, when the Nazis occupied Denmark in 1940, his life became exceedingly difficult.’
    • ‘As befitted his station the child was christened in the Church of the Mission.’
    1. 1.1Give a name to (someone or something) which reflects a notable characteristic.
      [with object and complement] ‘we have christened our regular train home the ghost train’
      • ‘Sure he christens his motorcycles with nicknames such as ‘Dream Machine’ and ‘Freedom Blues’, but Noel considers himself a poet nevertheless.’
      • ‘They christened him Il Gigante Buono, literally the Good Giant, but more correctly the Gentle Giant - he was never even cautioned during his 20-year pro career.’
      • ‘And the Armagh back line indulged Spillane by donning the nicknames he had christened them with.’
      • ‘He mocked his colleagues in Congress by christening Washington the ‘city of Satan.’’
      • ‘We had a huge 27 inch black and white TV, that one of our family friends had christened, ‘Harbour View.’’
      • ‘Although Karanjia already had a daughter, she took the abandoned baby home and christened her Dimple Irene.’
      • ‘Upon first seeing it, Peter christened it ‘The Perfect Shirt’ - a name which has stuck to this day.’
      • ‘Casey christened her the Pink Panther, and the name has stuck.’
      • ‘Early in this miserable stretch, I christened him the Arsonist, and the name stuck among my friends.’
      • ‘Behind our chalet, which my daughter christened the Magic House, rose our very own mountain, at least 50 metres high.’
      • ‘The Major later decided that such a formidable opponent must certainly be an officer, and christened him ‘Colonel Bogey,’ a term still heard today.’
      • ‘Since I have not been able to find a definite name for the gambit, I will temporarily christen it the ‘Kevitz Gambit,’ secure in the knowledge that if this is a blunder my readers will quickly set me straight.’
      • ‘The duckling, christened Lucky, was waddling down Cyprus Road behind its mother with its nine brothers and sisters when it toppled over and fell into a storm drain.’
      • ‘She loved Abba's recording of Fernando and decided to christen her favourite waiter with this name.’
      • ‘Matt had christened Jerry with that nickname when they were boys because of his friend's Celtic heritage.’
      • ‘Indeed, Fr. Harry's ability to show-up almost anywhere led to some friends christening him as the ‘Holy Spirit’ which he enjoyed no end!’
      • ‘They were unofficially christened the Brown Water Navy.’
      • ‘Her colleagues have christened her Erin Brockovich after the legal rights activist made famous by Hollywood - and now Bob Carr knows why.’
      • ‘It didn't have a name, so we christened it the Dangerously Drinkable.’
      • ‘We even christened him with a jazzy, American-sounding name… Judy!’
      call, name, dub, style, term, designate, label, nickname, refer to as, give the name of
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  • 2informal Use for the first time.

    ‘he bought a new pair of boots and christened them with his first goal at the McAlpine Stadium’
    • ‘Brown made his Yorkshire debut in the first friendly of the season against Derbyshire at Scarborough's South Cliff Golf Club, where several new holes were christened in the inter-county exchange.’
    • ‘Several drinks later, comes the worst part of the day - what seems like a half-day trek through the mud, in the dark, uphill, to our tent in the newly christened Strummer field.’
    • ‘I'm so glad I brought my walking pole, it's great for measuring bog depth before you leap in, my new boots have been well and truly christened now.’
    begin using, use for the first time, break in
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Old English crīstnian ‘make Christian’, from crīsten ‘Christian’, from Latin Christianus, from Christus Christ.