National Saint Day is marked every July 26 to honor everyone bearing the name Saint and celebrate the meaning behind the name. Did you know that the name ‘Saint’ may have been derived from ‘Sinclair,’ a clan name that originated in the 11th century? Saint is a name usually accorded to a person believed to have attained a high degree of holiness, likeness, or closeness to God. Saint is derived from the Latin ‘Sanctus,’ which originated from the Greek word ‘holy’ — ‘ἅγιος (hagios).’ The name Saint may have started as a nickname for a pious person before becoming a given name or surname. Or the surname could be from the English-Scottish clan Sinclair. Famous people named Saint include Eva Marie Saint (American actress), Crosbie E. Saint (American general), and Saint West (son of Kanye West and Kim Kardashian).
History of National Saint Day
There are different accounts of how the given name and surname Saint originated. One report suggested that Saint began as a nickname for a particularly pious individual around the Middle Ages. It later evolved into a personal name in Europe, leading to some instances of the surname. Another account believes the name is locational, describing their origin. For example, Di Santos, Do Santo, and Dos Santos.
A prominent account traces the origin of the name to Clan Sinclair, a Highland Scottish clan who were Barons of Roslin, Earls of Orkney, and Earls of Caithness. The family is believed to have hailed from Saint-Clair, a place in Normandy. The clan descended from Walderness Compte de Saint Clare, who went with William the Conqueror during his invasion of England. Members of the family, Richard of Saint-Clair and Brittel of Saint-Clair, were mentioned in the “Domesday Book.” In 1068, the former accompanied Saint Margaret of Scotland, daughter of Edward the Exile, to Scotland. For his service, the king of Scotland granted Richard of Saint-Clair the barony of Roslin. The clan was involved in the Scottish-Norwegian War, Wars of Scottish Independence, Battle of Homildon Hill, and Battle of Flodden. The clan currently holds close to 10 castles in Scotland. Through the centuries, different spelling variations of the clan name have developed, of which the surname Saint may have evolved.
In the early 21st century, in the United States, it was rare to name a child Saint due to the perception that it was set aside for holy or virtuous people or those venerated by the Church. That changed in the 2010s when famous people began naming their children Saint. The name has become part of a newly trending category of virtue/aspirational names for boys and girls.
National Saint Day timeline
Saint is used as a nickname for a particularly pious person.
Walderness Compte de Saint Clare arrives in England with William the Conqueror.
The King of Scotland makes Richard of Saint-Clair the barony of Roslin.
Saint becomes a trendy name in the United States, following stars naming their children Saint.
National Saint Day FAQs
Is it okay to name your child Saint?
It is perfectly okay to name your child Saint. Naming your child Saint may have been ‘off’ a few years ago. But with the birth of Saint West, the name has become commonplace.
Where does the name Saint come from?
The name Saint started as a nickname for a pious person during medieval times. The surname Saint may also be from a branch of the Sinclair family.
Is Saint a boy's name?
Saint is a gender-neutral name. Anyone, from male and female to L.G.B.T.Q+ persons, can bear the name.
National Saint Day Activities
Send wishes on social media
Go online to your favorite social media platform and wish everyone bearing the name Saint a happy National Saint Day. Don’t forget to use the hashtag #NationalSaintDay!
Give to charitable cause
In honor of the meaning of the name Saint (holy, virtuous), you can celebrate National Saint Day by giving to charity. Look for a cause you are passionate about or see making the most impact in your community and donate to it. That could be a cancer organization, an orphanage, or an animal shelter.
Watch a Saint movie
A Saint movie can be a movie featuring someone called Saint, directed by a person named Saint, or is about Christian saints. Famous examples of such films are “The Saint,” “Mary Magdalene,” and “Joan of Arc.”
5 Interesting Facts About The Name Saint
It might have started as a nickname
Saint was used as a nickname for a pious person before its use as a first name and surname.
It has several variants
Saint has variants in different languages, including Spanish, Portuguese, and Italian.
The name Saint means ‘holy’ or ‘virtuous.’
It’s rising in popularity
According to BabyCenter, Saint is among the top 500 most famous names in the United States, whereas it was ranked 3,090 less than a decade ago.
A branch of the famous Clan Sinclair
The surname Saint is believed to have originated from Clan Sinclair.
Why We Love National Saint Day
It’s a celebration of Saints
National Saint Day is a day for celebrating everyone named Saint and the powerful meaning behind their names. Saints are highly industrious people who have succeeded in various professions. That includes the army, politics, evangelism, writing, entrepreneurship, and acting. If you know anyone named Saint, be nice to them and wish them a happy National Saint Day.
National Saint Day is an opportunity to give to charity
The meaning of the name Saint presents a chance to do something for the greater good on National Saint Day. One of those things one can do is to give to charity. That may be an orphanage, food bank, cancer organization, or homes for the disabled.
Saint is gender-neutral
Another thing we love about the name Saint is that it’s neither masculine nor feminine. It’s a perfect name to use in a gender-neutral world.
National Saint Day dates