Christian name

Christian name
the first name given to Christians at birth or christening
Syn: ↑baptismal name
Hypernyms: ↑first name, ↑given name, ↑forename

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noun, pl ⋯ names [count]
: a person's first name : the name given to a person when the person is born or christened

Her Christian name is Anna.

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ˈChristian name [Christian name Christian names] noun (BrE)
(in Western countries) a name given to sb when they are born or when they are christened; a personal name, not a family name

We're all on Christian name terms here.

Apart from their ↑surname or last name, most British and American children are given two personal names by their parents, a first name and a middle name. These names are sometimes called Christian names or given names. Some people have only one given name, a few have three or more. Friends and members of a family who are of similar age usually call one another by their first names. In some families young people now also call their aunts and uncles and even their parents by their first names. Outside the family, the expression be on first name terms suggests that the people concerned have a friendly, informal relationship
When writing their name Americans commonly give their first name and their middle initial, e.g. George M Cohan. Both given names are used in full only on formal occasions, e.g. when people get married. In Britain many people sign their name on forms etc. using the initials of both their given names and their surname, e.g. J E Brooks, but may write Joanna Brooks at the end of a letter. The full name (= all given names and surname) is usually only required on official forms.
Parents usually decide on given names for their children before they are born. In some families the oldest boy is given the same name as his father. In the US the word junior or senior, or a number, is added after the name and surname to make it clear which person is being referred to. For example, the son of William Jones Sr (Senior) would be called William Jones Jr (Junior), and his son would be called William Jones III (‚William Jones the third’).
Many popular names come from the Bible, e.g. Jacob, Joshua, Matthew, Mary, Rebecca and Sarah, though this does not imply that the people who choose them are religious. Other people give their children the name of somebody they admire, such as a famous sports personality, or a film or pop star. In Britain the names William and Harry became common again after the sons of Prince Charles were given these names. In the US Chelsea was not a common name for a girl until President Bill Clinton’s daughter Chelsea came to public attention.
Names such as David, Michael, Paul and Robert for boys and Catherine, Elizabeth and Jane for girls remain popular for many years. Others, e.g. Darrell, Darren, Wayne, Chloe, Jade and Zara, are fashionable for only a short period. Names such as Albert, Herbert, Wilfrid, Doris, Gladys and Joyce are now out of fashion and are found mainly among older people. Some older names come back into fashion and there are now many young women called Amy, Emma, Harriet, Laura and Sophie. The birth announcements columns in newspapers give an indication of the names which are currently popular. In Britain these have included Jack, Joshua and Thomas for boys and Emily, Ellie and Chloe for girls and in the US Jacob, Michael and Joshua for boys and Emily, Emma and Madison for girls
People from Wales, Scotland or Ireland, or those who have a cultural background from outside Britain, may choose from an additional set of names. In the US Jews, ↑African Americans or people of Latin American origin may also choose different names.

Useful english dictionary. 2012.

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(as distinguished from the family name or surname), ,

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Christian name — Christian Chris tian, a. 1. Pertaining to Christ or his religion; as, Christian people. [1913 Webster] 3. Pertaining to the church; ecclesiastical; as, a Christian court. Blackstone. [1913 Webster] 4. Characteristic of Christian people;… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Christian name — n a person s first name, especially when they are given this name in a Christian religious ceremony ▪ She didn t like children to call her by her Christian name …   Dictionary of contemporary English

  • Christian name — Name Name (n[=a]m), n. [AS. nama; akin to D. naam, OS. & OHG. namo, G. name, Icel. nafn, for namn, Dan. navn, Sw. namn, Goth. nam[=o], L. nomen (perh. influenced by noscere, gnoscere, to learn to know), Gr. o mona, Scr. n[=a]man. [root]267. Cf.… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Christian name — Christian ,name noun count MAINLY BRITISH someone s first name, or other name they have been given that is different from their family name: Her Christian name is Elizabeth …   Usage of the words and phrases in modern English

  • Christian name — Christian names N COUNT Some people refer to their first names as their Christian names. Despite my attempts to get him to call me by my Christian name he insisted on addressing me as Mr Kennedy . Syn: given name, forename …   English dictionary

  • Christian name — n. the baptismal name or given name, as distinguished from the surname or family name …   English World dictionary

  • Christian name — In a multicultural society such as Britain and the USA have become, this term should be avoided in favour of the culturally neutral first name or forename. In AmE given name is also used …   Modern English usage

  • Christian name — ► NOUN ▪ a forename, especially one given at baptism …   English terms dictionary

  • Christian name — UK / US noun [countable] Word forms Christian name : singular Christian name plural Christian names someone s first name, or other name they have been given that is different from their family name Her Christian name is Elizabeth …   English dictionary

  • Christian name — noun a forename, especially one given at baptism. Usage In recognition of the fact that English speaking societies have many religions and cultures, not just Christian ones, the term Christian name has largely given way, at least in official… …   English new terms dictionary

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