from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition
- n. A religious sacrament marked by the symbolic application of water to the head or immersion of the body into water and resulting in admission of the recipient into the community of Christians.
- n. A ceremony, trial, or experience by which one is initiated, purified, or given a name.
from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License
- n. The Bible Baptist Christian personal ordinance in which one is submerged in water.
- n. The Christian sacrament in which one is anointed with or submerged in water and sometimes given a name.
- n. A similar ceremony of initiation, purification or naming.
from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English
- n. The act of baptizing; the application of water to a person, as a sacrament or religious ceremony, by which he is initiated into the visible church of Christ. This is performed by immersion, sprinkling, or pouring.
from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- n. A sacrament or ordinance of the Christian church, instituted by Christ as an initiatory rite, consisting in the immersion of the person in water, or in the application of water to the person by affusion or by sprinkling, by an authorized administrator, “in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost.”
- n. Any ceremonial ablution intended as a sign of purification, dedication, etc.: as, the baptism administered by John the Baptist, or that administered to proselytes by the ancient Jews; the baptism or christening of bells, ships, and other objects in the Roman Catholic Church, etc.
- n. Martyrdom.
- n. Same as baptismal character (which see, under baptismal).
from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.
- n. a Christian sacrament signifying spiritual cleansing and rebirth
Middle English baptisme, from Old French, from Late Latin baptismus, from Greek baptismos, from baptizein, to baptize; see baptize.(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Old French batesme or bapteme, from Ecclesiastical Latin baptismus, from Ancient Greek βαπτισμός (baptismós, "dipping, baptism"), from βαπτίζω (baptízō, "I dip in liquid"). (Wiktionary)