Definition of chrism in English:


See synonyms for chrism on


  • A mixture of oil and balsam, consecrated and used for anointing at baptism and in other rites of Catholic, Orthodox, and Anglican Churches.

    ‘Having been anointed with chrism, they would put their clothes back on and enter the church to participate in the Eucharist for the first time.’
    • ‘The child is then anointed with chrism, a consecrated oil, and placed in a white baptismal garment.’
    • ‘On Confirmation Day, the teenage candidates waited nervously for the questions the bishop would ask before anointing them with chrism.’
    • ‘The frequent theft of chrism from churches for magical purposes is a case in point; surely this was not a clear indicator of persistent paganism.’
    • ‘In it he expresses his anguish at the killings: ‘The newly baptized in their white garments had just been anointed with chrism.’’



/ˈkrizəm/ /ˈkrɪzəm/


Old English, from medieval Latin crisma, ecclesiastical Latin chrisma, from Greek khrisma ‘anointing’, from khriein ‘anoint’.