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Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English
▪ Along with the national myth comes a rich tradition of hagiography.
▪ But soon the facts crowd in and the film spirals into hagiography.
▪ Closer to such history in terms of the narrative skill required is hagiography.
▪ For the rest of the programme was sheer hagiography.
▪ Presenting a very sanitized view of Pitt's career, the film ends up a hagiography of Churchill.
The Collaborative International Dictionary

Hagiography \Ha`gi*og"ra*phy\ (-f[y^]; 277), n. Same as Hagiographa.

Douglas Harper's Etymology Dictionary

"writing of saints' lives," 1821, from Greek hagios "holy" (see hagiology) + -graphy. Related: Hagiographic (1819); hagiographical (1580s); hagiographer (1650s).


n. 1 (context uncountable English) The study of saints. 2 (context countable English) A biography of a saint. 3 (context countable English) A biography which expresses reverence and respect for its subject. 4 (context pejorative English) A biography which is uncritically supportive of its subject, often including embellishments or propaganda.


n. a biography that idealizes or idolizes the person (especially a person who is a saint)


A hagiography is a biography of a saint or an ecclesiastical leader. The term hagiography may be used to refer to the biography of a saint or highly developed spiritual being in any of the world's spiritual traditions.

Christian hagiographies focus on the lives, and notably the miracles of men and women canonized by the Roman Catholic church, the Anglican Communion, the Eastern Orthodox Church, the Oriental Orthodox churches, and the Church of the East. Other religions such as Buddhism, Hinduism, Islam and Sikhism also create and maintain hagiographical texts (such as the Sikh Janamsakhis) concerning saints, gurus and other individuals believed to be imbued with sacred power.

Hagiographic works, particularly those of the Middle Ages, can incorporate a record of institutional and local history, and evidence of popular cults, customs, and traditions. However, when referring to modern, non-ecclesiastical works, the term hagiography is often used as a pejorative reference to biographies and histories whose authors are perceived to be uncritical or reverential to their subject.

Usage examples of "hagiography".

Being an Amatl Indian, Padre Luis had long been able to accord native Toltecan beliefs with the pageantry and hagiography of Catholicism.

Ontogeny recapitulates cosmogeny -- what is it but to say that proctoscopy repeats hagiography?

In Skullion’s social hagiography two names stood out as the epitome of the effeteness he worshipped.

Medieval hagiography makes her the great discoverer of relics, who brought the heads of the three Wise Men to Cologne, the Robe Jesus wore to Trier, and the True Cross to Rome.