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Catherine

or Cath·er·yn

[kath-er-in, kath-rin]
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noun
  1. a female given name.
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Catherine I

noun
  1. Marfa Skavronskaya, 1684?–1727, Lithuanian wife of Peter the Great: empress of Russia 1725–27.
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Catherine II

noun
  1. Sophia Augusta of Anhalt-ZerbstCatherine the Great, 1729–96, empress of Russia 1762–96.
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Greenaway

[green-uh-wey]
noun
  1. KateCatherine, 1846–1901, English painter and author and illustrator of children's books.
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Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

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British Dictionary definitions for catherine

Catherine

noun
  1. Saint. died 307 ad, legendary Christian martyr of Alexandria, who was tortured on a spiked wheel and beheaded
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Catherine I

noun
  1. ?1684–1727, second wife of Peter the Great, whom she succeeded as empress of Russia (1725–27)
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Catherine II

noun
  1. known as Catherine the Great. 1729–96, empress of Russia (1762–96), during whose reign Russia extended her boundaries at the expense of Turkey, Sweden, and Poland: she was a patron of literature and the arts
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Greenaway

noun
  1. Kate. 1846–1901, English painter, noted as an illustrator of children's books
  2. Peter. born 1942, British film director; noted for such cerebral films as The Draughtsman's Contract (1982), Prospero's Books (1990), and Eight and a Half Women (1999)
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Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for catherine

Catherine

fem. proper name, from French Catherine, from Medieval Latin Katerina, from Latin Ecaterina, from Greek Aikaterine. The -h- was introduced 16c., probably a folk etymology from Greek katheros "pure." The initial Greek vowel is preserved in Russian form Ekaterina.

As the name of a type of pear, attested from 1640s. Catherine wheel (early 13c.) is named for St. Catherine of Alexandria, legendary virgin martyr from the time of Maximinus who was tortured on a spiked wheel. Her name day is Nov. 25. A popular saint in the Middle Ages, which accounts for the popularity of the given name.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper