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virginal1

[vur-juh-nl] /ˈvɜr dʒə nl/
adjective
1.
of, pertaining to, characteristic of, or befitting a virgin:
virginal purity.
2.
continuing in a state of virginity.
3.
pure; unsullied; untouched:
a virginal mountain stream.
4.
Zoology. not fertilized.
Origin of virginal1
late Middle English
1400-1450
1400-50; late Middle English < Latin virginālis, equivalent to virgin- virgin + -ālis -al1
Related forms
virginally, adverb

virginal2

[vur-juh-nl] /ˈvɜr dʒə nl/
noun
1.
Often, virginals. a rectangular harpsichord with the strings stretched parallel to the keyboard, the earlier types placed on a table: popular in the 16th and 17th centuries.
Origin
1520-30; apparently special use of virginal1
Related forms
virginalist, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for virginal
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • That virginal white lily has gone over to San Diego in search of her amiable papa.

    Saragossa Benito Prez Galds
  • There are several explanations as to why the virginal was so called.

    How the Piano Came to Be Ellye Howell Glover
  • He caught the pure, the virginal tremor, and knew it for the vibration of her soul.

    The Creators May Sinclair
  • It was an exquisite morning, too virginal for June, too richly warm for May.

    The Flying Mercury Eleanor M. Ingram
  • No one would have thought that this old garden—this rich, wild, fair, virginal place—was in the heart of Paris.

    Francezka Molly Elliot Seawell
  • She stood gazing at the firelit faces, the virginal half-smile on her lips.

    The Crimson Tide Robert W. Chambers
  • Although simply painted on the exterior, the case of this virginal is decorated on the inside in characteristic Ruckers style.

    Harpsichords and Clavichords Cynthia A. Hoover
British Dictionary definitions for virginal

virginal1

/ˈvɜːdʒɪnəl/
adjective
1.
of, relating to, characterized by, proper to, or maintaining a state of virginity; chaste
2.
extremely pure or fresh; untouched; undefiled
Derived Forms
virginally, adverb
Word Origin
C15: from Latin virginālis maidenly, from virgō virgin

virginal2

/ˈvɜːdʒɪnəl/
noun
1.
(often pl) a smaller version of the harpsichord, but oblong in shape, having one manual and no pedals
Derived Forms
virginalist, noun
Word Origin
C16: probably from Latin virginālisvirginal1, perhaps because it was played largely by young ladies
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 Origin and History for virginal
adj.

early 15c., from Old French virginal or directly from Latin virginalis, from virgin (see virgin). The keyed musical instrument so called from 1520s, but the reason is obscure (see virginals).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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