• WordNet 3.6
    • n relic something of sentimental value
    • n relic an antiquity that has survived from the distant past
    • ***

Additional illustrations & photos:

Relics of Kate Marsdon Relics of Kate Marsdon
A Group of Pilgrim Relics A Group of Pilgrim Relics

Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
    • Relic Hence, a memorial; anything preserved in remembrance; as, relics of youthful days or friendships. "The pearls were spilt;
      Some lost, some stolen, some as relics kept."
    • Relic That which remains; that which is left after loss or decay; a remaining portion; a remnant. "The relics of lost innocence.""The fragments, scraps, the bits and greasy relics ."
    • Relic The body from which the soul has departed; a corpse; especially, the body, or some part of the body, of a deceased saint or martyr; -- usually in the plural when referring to the whole body. "There are very few treasuries of relics in Italy that have not a tooth or a bone of this saint.""Thy relics , Rowe, to this fair urn we trust,
      And sacred place by Dryden's awful dust."
    • ***
Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
    • n relic That which remains; that which is left after the consumption, loss, or decay of the rest.
    • n relic The body of a deceased person; a corpse, as deserted by the soul.
    • n relic That which is preserved in remembrance; a memento; a sonvenir; a keepsake.
    • n relic An object held in reverence or affection because connected with some sacred or beloved person deceased; specifically, in the Roman Catholic Church, the Gr. Ch., and some other churches, a saint's body or part of it, or an object supposed to have been connected with the life or body of Christ, of the Virgin Mary, or of some saint or martyr, and regarded therefore as a personal memorial worthy of religions veneration. Relics are of three classes:
    • n relic Something dear or precious.
    • n relic A monument.
    • n relic Synonyms Remains, Relics. The remains of a dead person are his corpse or his literary works; in the latter case they are, for the sake of distinction, generally called literary remains. We speak also of the remains of a feast, of a city, building, monument, etc. Relics always suggests antiquity; as, the relics of ancient sovereigns, heroes, and especially saints. The singular of relics is used; that of remains is not.
    • ***
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
    • n Relic rel′ik that which is left after loss or decay of the rest: a corpse (gener. pl.):
    • n Relic rel′ik (R.C.) any personal memorial of a reputed saint, to be held in reverence as an incentive to faith and piety: a memorial, a souvenir: a monument
    • ***


  • Emily Bronte
    “Any relic of the dead is precious, if they were valued living.”
  • Susan Sontag
    “Nature in America has always been suspect, on the defensive, cannibalized by progress. In America, every specimen becomes a relic.”
  • John Maynard Keynes
    “In truth, the gold standard is already a barbarous relic.”


Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
F. relique, from L. reliquiae, pl., akin to relinquere, to leave behind. See Relinquish
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
Fr. relique—L. reliquiærelinquĕre, relictum, to leave behind.


In literature:

Then there was what was called in the office the `old machine,' a relic of Clayhanger's predecessor, and at least eighty years old.
"Clayhanger" by Arnold Bennett
It is a holy relic, and the Maharajahs of Dour have worn that in turn for hundreds of years.
"Glyn Severn's Schooldays" by George Manville Fenn
My business here was to search for relics, and as soon as daylight appeared I was astir.
"Mexico and its Religion" by Robert A. Wilson
This was the late protector, by whom some relics of authority were still retained.
"Memoirs of the Court of Queen Elizabeth" by Lucy Aikin
After the parade ends, the bloody shirts of these men are divided among their friends and kept as holy relics.
"Modern Persia" by Mooshie G. Daniel
The result of this conversation naturally turned Philip's thoughts to the relic, and he went into his mother's room to take possession of it.
"The Phantom Ship" by Frederick Marryat
He collected with religious care the facts from his brethren, especially from the conductor of these relics from England.
"Curiosities of Literature, Vol. 1 (of 3)" by Isaac D'Israeli
The relics, no doubt, were taken at the suppression of the monastery.
"Westminster Abbey" by Mrs. A. Murray Smith
Few relics of the more substantial structures of that time survive.
"Scottish Cathedrals and Abbeys" by Dugald Butler and Herbert Story
Being told the cause of the shoutings in the streets, he persuaded his guide to lead him to the sacred relics.
"Historical Sketches, Volume I (of 3)" by John Henry Newman

In poetry:

"If ne'er upon the Holy Land
'Tis mine in life to tread,
Bear thou to Scotland's kindly earth
The relics of her dead."
"The Heart Of The Bruce" by William Edmondstoune Aytoun
Who works it ? No dead relic sweet
Of her, my living saint,
Perfect beyond the skill of thought
Or fancy's power to paint.
"The Yellow Butterfly" by Manmohan Ghose
And still she sits and notes them all,
Dear relics of her vanished day;
Nor do we see her tear-drops fall,
Nor watch them wiped away.
"Ten Years After - Easter Sunday" by Annie Adams Fields
Then through the ages that succeed,
The hearts shall come from every shore,
To worship where their relics lie,
Whose glorious fame can die no more.
"Monticello" by James Avis Bartley
In speaking of thy noble life
One needs must think upon the strife
That long and sternly faced it;
But since those times have flitted by,
Just let the useless relic die
With passions that embraced it.
"Frederick Douglass" by Joseph Seamon Cotter Sr
The names of their founders have vanished in the gloom,
Like the dry branch in the fire or the body in the tomb;
But to-day, in the ray, their shadows still they cast—
These temples of forgotten gods—these relics of the past!
"The Pillar Towers of Ireland" by Denis Florence MacCarthy

In news:

The exhibit includes relics from the historical Shakyamuni Buddha , whose teachings formed the foundation of Buddhism .
Cuban Missile Crisis relic now a museum in Palm Beach County.
Relic hunters hope to form local chapter .
Saudi relics reveal details of centuries-old civilization .
Libraries aren't relics, they're more vital than ever.
US House repeals Cold War relic.
Relics stolen from San Buenaventura Mission in Ventura, church officials say.
Claim Rejected On Indian Relic.
Relics of 'John the Baptist' dated to 1st century.
It really is five detection settings are coin, relic, jewelry, custom,at the same time as all-metal.
MOSCOW — Braving freezing cold temperatures and ice-covered sidewalks, tens of thousands of Russians stood in line Wednesday to see and kiss a newly arrived relic of the Virgin Mary in Russia's largest Orthodox cathedral.
Honor flag another relic of Chenango's Civil War past.
Heck, you might get $500 for the relic .
Will the 'First Printing' Become a 20th-Century Relic .
His Holiness the Dalai Lama has offered eight relics of Shakyamuni Buddha relics to the tour.

In science:

MACHe3 would thus potentially allow to reach a large part of the SUSY region, not excluded by current collider limits and for which the neutralino relic density lies within the range of interest.
MACHe3: A new generation detector for non-baryonic dark matter direct detection
The central white region is excluded by collider limits, while the two other white regions are giving a relic density outside the range of interest.
MACHe3: A new generation detector for non-baryonic dark matter direct detection
The aim of this talk is to discuss the production and the possible detection of a cosmic background of relic dilatons.
Phenomenology of the relic dilaton background
We shall thus assume that the relic dilatons are weakly coupled to matter, and light enough to have not yet decayed (m <∼ 100 MeV), so as to be available to present observations.
Phenomenology of the relic dilaton background
This grouping may be the relic of a past merger or accretion event.
Dynamics of the Globular Cluster System Associated with M49 (NGC4472): Cluster Orbital Properties and the Distribution of Dark Matter