Definition of saint in English:

Share this entry


Pronunciation: /seɪnt/
Pronunciation: /s(ə)nt/


1A person acknowledged as holy or virtuous and regarded in Christian faith as being in heaven after death: a place dedicated to a seventh-century saint figures of apostles and saints
More example sentences
  • The paintings are scenes from the gospels, the apostles, the saints, images of heaven and hell and seven choirs of angels.
  • Icons - images representing Christ, angels, saints, and other holy figures - hold an important place in Orthodox practice.
  • We celebrate the lives of past martyrs and saints from the Christian faith.
1.1A person of exalted virtue who is canonized by the Church after death and who may be the object of veneration and prayers for intercession: Innocent III stressed that only the Pope had the authority to declare a saint
More example sentences
  • Eventually, because of her contributions, she was canonized as a saint by the church.
  • One of the first Chinese ever to be declared saints by the Catholic Church, Anna was not celebrated in her homeland.
  • For canonization, she would need one more miracle, and then at that point she would be declared a saint by the church.
1.2 (Saint , abbreviation St or S) Used in titles of religious saints: the epistles of Saint Paul St Mary’s Church
More example sentences
  • The Naomh Donnach boat was called after Saint Dennis a much-honoured Saint in the Clogherhead area.
  • In addition, they honor Saint Andrew, patron saint of Scotland, on November 30, and the Scottish poet Robert Burns on Burns Night, January 25.
1.3 (Saint) A member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints; a Mormon: Smith began to cast around for uninhabited territories where the Saints might build their Kingdom
1.4(In biblical use) a Christian believer: the poor saints which are at Jerusalem
More example sentences
  • So all believers are saints in the sense that they have been set aside by God for his own use.
2 informal A very virtuous, kind, or patient person: she’s a saint to go on living with that man
More example sentences
  • She's a real saint for having put up with me for all these years.
  • It's only because she's a real saint such as you seldom come across that she's treating you so kindly.


[with object]
1Formally recognize as a saint; canonize: the sandy shores of the River Nid, where Holy Olaf’s bones were laid to rest before he had been sainted
More example sentences
  • In the previous government, there were many ministers who were members of the Opus Dei, which is a very fundamentalist Catholic sect that was created by a Spanish priest who was recently sainted by the Pope.
  • There are people who think she should be sainted in the Catholic Church.
  • King Olaf, who was later sainted, more or less imposed Christianity on his people by force.
1.1 (as adjective sainted) Worthy of being a saint; very virtuous: the story of his sainted sister Eileen
More example sentences
  • The second Sunday after Easter is now dedicated to the Divine Mercy - a new feast day instituted by John Paul himself based on the visions of his sainted compatriot, Faustina Kowalska.
  • Villeneuve is a fine driver when he is in the mood, perhaps as good as anyone in Formula One bar the sainted Schumacher, but he is a difficult man to motivate at the best of times and his mood is foul for the moment.
  • Few today realize the intense devotion to Christ in the early church and in our sainted martyrs.


my sainted aunt

see aunt.



Pronunciation: /ˈseɪntdəm/
Example sentences
  • The Society of King Charles the Martyr was founded in London in 1894. Since that time it has worked to promote the cause of King Charles's martyrdom and saintdom.
  • The tradition of creating shrines using pieces of previous popes dates back to medieval times. John XXIII is on his way to saintdom and may be canonized soon.


Pronunciation: /ˈseɪntlʌɪk/
Example sentences
  • Grand or sad loners have a saintlike aura - Turner, for example, lashed to a mast, ‘surrounded by implacable and indifferent forces’ or Rouault, who accepted suffering and honestly repented of his bitterness toward the world.
  • Pearl's self-starvation references young women through the ages who rejected food as their only method of assertion and who were regarded as saintlike in their martyrdom.
  • Not only does Fancy contradict southern ideals but in her saintlike manner, she possesses qualities nobler than those of the aristocrats with whom she seeks to identify.


Example sentences
  • Attar, to prove that saintship may be found in woman as naturally as in a man, says: The holy prophets have laid it down that 'God does not look upon your outward forms'. It is not the outward form that matters, but the inner purpose of the heart.
  • Our Lord unmasks this vile pretender to saintship, and shows him that his hidden hypocrisy, covered with the garb of external sanctity, is more abominable in the sight of God than the openly professed and practised iniquity of the profligate.


Middle English, from Old French seint, from Latin sanctus 'holy', past participle of sancire 'consecrate'.

  • Saint comes via Old French, from Latin sanctus ‘holy’. The word has been used in the names of many diseases such as St Vitus' dance (early 17th century) with the supposition that the associated saint would ward off the illness. Also based on sanctus are sanctify (Late Middle English), sanctity (Late Middle English), sanctimonious (early 17th century) originally meaning ‘holy in character’, and sanctuary (Middle English) originally a holy place where you were safe from attack or arrest. A sanction (Late Middle English) was originally an ecclesiastical decree and comes from Latin sancere which meant both ‘to make holy’ and ‘to decree’.

Words that rhyme with saint

acquaint, ain't, attaint, complaint, constraint, distraint, faint, feint, paint, plaint, quaint, restraint, taint

For editors and proofreaders

Line breaks: saint

Share this entry

What do you find interesting about this word or phrase?

Comments that don't adhere to our Community Guidelines may be moderated or removed.