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patron saint

a saint regarded as the special guardian of a person, group, trade, country, etc.
Origin of patron saint
1710-20 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for patron-saint
Historical Examples
  • She is the patron-saint of young physicians and the bosom-friend of old ones.

    Twice Told Tales Nathaniel Hawthorne
  • And it is Kant, the patron-saint of the American Ethical lecturers, who set them the example of inconsistency.

    The Story of My Mind M. M. Mangasarian
  • If they wished more land they must work for it; they must not take idleness for their patron-saint.

  • In France, it is not the birthday, but the day of the patron-saint whose name one bears, which is celebrated.

    An Englishman in Paris Albert D. (Albert Dresden) Vandam
  • But to-day was the feast of the patron-saint of the village; and there must have been dancing and drinking till nightfall.

    The Choice of Life Georgette Leblanc
  • The picture represents the patron-saint of the church, accompanied by other saints and by the worldly votaries I have mentioned.

    Italian Hours Henry James
  • Kneeling before the bishop she begged his benediction and the name of Cecilia her patron-saint.

  • The priest had said that in Dutch Ophelia meant Flora, who was the patron-saint of roses and forget-me-nots.

    Walter Pieterse Multatuli
  • Then he fell on his knees and prayed his patron-saint to help him.

  • Another fountain is surmounted by the figure of St Michael, the patron-saint of the burgh.

British Dictionary definitions for patron-saint

patron saint

a saint regarded as the particular guardian of a country, church, trade, person, etc
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
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patron-saint in Culture

patron saint definition

A saint from whom a person or group claims special protection or prayers. Saint Christopher, for example, is considered the patron of travelers; Saint Luke, the patron of doctors; and Saint Patrick, the patron of Ireland. People who have the same name as a saint may consider the saint their patron. The honoring of patron saints is especially common in the Roman Catholic Church.

The American Heritage® New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
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