• synonyms


verb (used with object) Archaic.
  1. to make the sign of the cross on, as for protection against evil influences.
  2. to bless.
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Origin of sain

before 900; Middle English; Old English segnian (cognate with German segnen to bless) < Late Latin signāre to sign with the cross
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for sained

Historical Examples

  • I had on a pair of old breeches that had been sained in and dried so often they was about half rotten.

    The Wit and Humor of America, Volume III. (of X.)


  • The tailor looked on for some time with admiration, but at last he grew alarmed and sained himself.

    The Fairy Mythology

    Thomas Keightley

British Dictionary definitions for sained


  1. (tr) archaic to make the sign of the cross over so as to bless or protect from evil or sin
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Word Origin

Old English segnian, from Latin signare to sign (with the cross)
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 sained



"to cross oneself; to mark with the sign of the cross," Old English segnian, from Latin signare "to sign" (in Church Latin "to make the sign of the Cross"); see sign (n.). A common Germanic borrowing, cf. Old Saxon segnon, Dutch zegenen, Old High German seganon, German segnen "to bless," Old Norse signa.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper