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[rel-i-kwer-ee] /ˈrɛl ɪˌkwɛr i/
noun, plural reliquaries.
a repository or receptacle for relics.
Origin of reliquary
1650-60; < Middle French reliquaire < Medieval Latin reliquiārium, equivalent to Latin reliqui(ae) remains (see relic) + -ārium -ary Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for reliquary
  • Pilgrim badges were souvenirs of these journeys and, if brought into contact with the church's reliquary, holy objects themselves.
  • In a larger, newer church adjacent, a shard of pale bone no bigger than a thumbnail lies in a golden reliquary.
British Dictionary definitions for reliquary


noun (pl) -quaries
a receptacle or repository for relics, esp relics of saints
Word Origin
C17: from Old French reliquaire, from reliquerelic
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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Word Origin and History for reliquary

"receptacle for keeping relics," 1650s, from French reliquaire (14c.), from relique (see relic).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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