sign of the cross

noun phrase

: a gesture of the hand forming a cross especially on forehead, breast, and shoulders to profess Christian faith or invoke divine protection or blessing

Word History

First Known Use

14th century, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of sign of the cross was in the 14th century

Dictionary Entries Near sign of the cross

Cite this Entry

“Sign of the cross.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/sign%20of%20the%20cross. Accessed 28 Jan. 2023.

Kids Definition

sign of the cross

: a movement of the hand forming a cross especially on forehead, shoulders, and breast to profess Christian faith or ask divine protection or blessing

More from Merriam-Webster on sign of the cross

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!


Commonly Confused Words Quiz

  • vector image of a face with thought expression
  • I went to the ______ store to buy a birthday card.
Name That Thing

You know what it looks like… but what is it called?

TAKE THE QUIZ
Solve today's spelling word game by finding as many words as you can with using just 7 letters. Longer words score more points.

Can you make 12 words with 7 letters?

PLAY