Click here to advertise on CatholicCulture.org

Dictionary

A modern dictionary of Catholic terms, both common and obscure. Find accurate definitions of words and phrases.

Search:

Or browse the dictionary by selecting a letter!
A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z

CHI-RHO

A symbol of Christ, arranged as a monogram, comprising the first two letters, XP, of his name in Greek. First presented publicly in the fifth century, it has been found in catacomb inscriptions of the second century. The P is usually vertically rendered with a single crossbar producing the X, but sometimes an additional transverse cross is used for embellishment and the initials A and Ω are free or attached to the added bar. Emperor Constantine (d. 337) employed it as an emblem on his military standard, the labarum and ancient Welsh and Scottish tomb monuments bear this sacred symbol carved in stone. As a monogram denoting triumph it fell into disuse after the fall of Rome, the Cross supplanting it. (Etym. Greek chi. X; rho, P.)

All items in this dictionary are from Fr. John Hardon's Modern Catholic Dictionary, © Eternal Life. Used with permission.

Subscribe for free
Click here to advertise on CatholicCulture.org

Recent Catholic Commentary

Sons of Dominic Prepare for Family Synod 5 hours ago
Dominican theologians assess proposals for divorced and remarried 6 hours ago
The ‘Pope Francis effect’—changing the way the world sees the papacy 7 hours ago
Renewal with God Behind Us: Man Determines All July 28
Introducing the Church Fathers July 27

Top Catholic News

Most Important Stories of the Last 30 Days
New management, new changes coming for reformed Vatican bank CWN - July 8
Sweeping reforms to Vatican's media, financial operations CWN - July 9
‘Even Genghis Khan didn’t do this’: Mosul emptied of Christians CWN - July 21