St. Denis

[seynt den-is; for 2, 3 also French san duh-nee]
  1. Ruth,1880?–1968, U.S. dancer.
  2. a suburb of Paris in N France: famous abbey, the burial place of many French kings.
  3. a seaport in and the capital of Réunion island, in the Indian Ocean.


[ree-yoon-yuh n; French rey-y-nyawn]
  1. an island in the Indian Ocean, E of Madagascar: an overseas department of France. 970 sq. mi. (2512 sq. km). Capital: St. Denis. Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

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British Dictionary definitions for saint-denis


noun usually abbreviated to: St-Denis
  1. a town in N France, on the Seine: 12th-century Gothic abbey church, containing the tombs of many French monarchs; an industrial suburb of Paris. Pop: 85 832 (1999)
  2. the capital of the French overseas region of Réunion, a port on the N coast. Pop: 131 557 (1999)


  1. the act or process of coming together again
  2. the state or condition of having been brought together again
  3. a gathering of relatives, friends, or former associates


  1. an island in the Indian Ocean, in the Mascarene Islands: an overseas region of France, having been in French possession since 1642. A number of far-flung and uninhabited islands, some located on the opposite side of Madagascar, were also politically part of Réunion until 2007, when they were transferred to the French Southern and Antarctic Territories. Capital: Saint-Denis. Pop: 767 000 (2004 est). Area: 2510 sq km (970 sq miles)
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 saint-denis



c.1600, "act or fact of coming together again," from re- "back, again" + union; or from French réunion (1540s). Meaning "meeting of persons of previous connection" is from 1820.

The island of Reunion, formerly known as Bourbon, was renamed during the French Revolution (1793) in commemoration of the 1792 union of revolutionaries from Marseille with the National Guard in Paris, renamed back to Bourbon after 1815, then back to the Revolutionary name after 1848.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper