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vestal virgin

noun
1.
(in ancient Rome) one of four, later six, virgins consecrated to Vesta and to the tending of the sacred fire on her altar.
Origin of vestal virgin
late Middle English
1400-1450
1400-50; late Middle English
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for vestal virgin
Historical Examples
  • Their mother was a vestal virgin,—that is, she was a maiden who tended the sacred fire in the temple of the goddess Vesta.

  • For ten years they were taught the duties of a vestal virgin.

  • Why can a vestal virgin become an heir, while her mother cannot?

    Cicero's Tusculan Disputations Marcus Tullius Cicero
  • This was carried into the temple by the vestal virgin and the sacred fire was rekindled.

    Artificial Light M. Luckiesh
  • Fantine had the long, white, fine fingers of the vestal virgin who stirs the ashes of the sacred fire with a golden pin.

    Les Misrables Victor Hugo
  • Her full, gentle figure had the charm of the vestal virgin and the wife.

    Atlantis Gerhart Hauptmann
  • So he hired assassins to kill the boy, and the girl, Sylvia, he doomed to be a vestal virgin.

  • Who will make me an offer for this vestal virgin of song—the joy of the morning and the benediction of the evening?

  • Four or five hours ago she had entered that car as "free from the trammels of passion" as a vestal virgin.

    Southern Hearts Florence Hull Winterburn
  • He would call it stealing now to do that same, but then it had been in the nature of a holy rite offered to a vestal virgin.

    The Search Grace Livingston Hill
British Dictionary definitions for vestal virgin

vestal virgin

noun
1.
(in ancient Rome) one of the four, later six, virgin priestesses whose lives were dedicated to Vesta and to maintaining the sacred fire in her temple
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Value for vestal

9
11
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