saint·​ly | \ ˈsānt-lē How to pronounce saintly (audio) \
saintlier; saintliest

Definition of saintly

: relating to, resembling, or befitting a saint : holy

Other Words from saintly

saintliness noun

Examples of saintly in a Sentence

a saintly man who devoted his life to caring for the dying
Recent Examples on the Web In the decades since, Colwin has become a saintly figure among a certain type of eager, urbane home cook who uses real butter and has at some point hosted an impromptu dinner for six. Rachel Syme, The New Yorker, 11 Oct. 2021 Nearby is a wood sculpture Hoffberger commissioned that depicts three saintly figures: a janitor, a nurse and a doctor. Christina Tkacik,, 8 Oct. 2021 Santiago-Hudson initially takes the stage as himself, an omniscient narrator who seems to be comforting his present-day self by recalling a lonely boyhood blessed by the protective care of a saintly woman known as Nanny. Marilyn Stasio, Variety, 8 Oct. 2021 Everything about the befuddled, grieving Tanya (Coolidge), the saintly Belinda (Rothwell) and their transactional friendship is ripe for lampooning. San Diego Union-Tribune, 27 Aug. 2021 Seated beside him was another Jesuit faculty member, James A.P. Byrne, a priest known for saintly serenity and heroic patience. Mike Kerrigan, WSJ, 3 Aug. 2021 Foucault’s dalliance with the dominant ideology challenged his saintly academic reputation, and numerous articles attempted to defend him against his own late-life transformation. Jonathan Russell Clark, Los Angeles Times, 24 May 2021 As songwriters go, Van Zandt has long been idolized by musical peers, who refer to him as bordering on the saintly. Michael Granberry, Dallas News, 10 May 2021 Along the way, there are also first-person perspective flashbacks to Burnz's now deceased wife, a saintly woman who died years earlier in an accident. Jake Coyle, Star Tribune, 5 May 2021

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'saintly.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of saintly

1534, in the meaning defined above

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Time Traveler for saintly

Time Traveler

The first known use of saintly was in 1534

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Dictionary Entries Near saintly

Saint Luke's summer



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Last Updated

23 Oct 2021

Cite this Entry

“Saintly.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 27 Nov. 2021.

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More Definitions for saintly



English Language Learners Definition of saintly

: like a saint : very good and kind


saint·​ly | \ ˈsānt-lē How to pronounce saintly (audio) \

Kids Definition of saintly

: like a saint or like that of a saint a saintly deed

Other Words from saintly

saintliness noun

More from Merriam-Webster on saintly

Nglish: Translation of saintly for Spanish Speakers


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