the ancient Roman goddess of the hearth, worshiped in a temple containing an altar on which a sacred fire was kept burning by the vestal virgins: identified with the Greek Hestia.
Astronomy. the third largest and one of the four brightest asteroids.
(lowercase) British. a short friction match with a wood or wax shank.
a female given name.

1350–1400; Middle English < Latin Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
vesta (ˈvɛstə)
a short friction match, usually of wood
[C19: named after the goddess; see Vesta1]

Vesta1 (ˈvɛstə)
Greek counterpart: Hestia the Roman goddess of the hearth and its fire. In her temple a perpetual flame was tended by the vestal virgins

Vesta2 (ˈvɛstə)
the brightest of the four largest asteroids. Diameter: about 530 km (240 miles)
[C19: named after the goddess; see Vesta1]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
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American Heritage
Science Dictionary
Vesta   (věs'tə)  Pronunciation Key 
The brightest of all the asteroids and the fourth to be discovered, in 1807. It is the third largest, with a diameter of about 530 km (329 mi), and the only asteroid that can be seen without a telescope. Evidence of lava flows on its surface suggests that it once had a molten interior. See more at asteroid.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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American Heritage
Cultural Dictionary

[Greek name Hestia]

The Roman and Greek goddess of the hearth and home. Roman and Greek cities were supposed to have a public hearth dedicated to Vesta, at which the fire was kept constantly burning.

The American Heritage® New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
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