[kris-uh-ning, kris-ning]


the ceremony of baptism, especially as accompanied by the giving of a name to a child.
a public ceremony in which a new ship is formally named and launched.
an act or instance of naming or dedicating something new.

Nearby words

  1. christchurch chromosome,
  2. christcross,
  3. christcross-row,
  4. christen,
  5. christendom,
  6. christensen-krabbe disease,
  7. christer,
  8. christhood,
  9. christian,
  10. christian action

Origin of christening

Middle English word dating back to 1250–1300; see origin at christen, -ing1


[kris-uh n]

verb (used with object)

to receive into the Christian church by baptism; baptize.
to give a name to at baptism: They christened her Mary.
to name and dedicate: to christen a ship.
to make use of for the first time.

Origin of christen

before 900; Middle English cristenen, Old English cristnian, derivative of cristen Christian

Related formschris·ten·er, nounre·chris·ten, verb (used with object)un·chris·tened, adjective Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for christening

British Dictionary definitions for christening



the Christian sacrament of baptism or the ceremony in which this is conferred


verb (tr)

to give a Christian name to in baptism as a sign of incorporation into a Christian Church
another word for baptize
to give a name to (anything), esp with some ceremony
informal to use for the first time
Derived Formschristener, noun

Word Origin for christen

Old English cristnian, from Crīst Christ

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 christening
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper