a woman who has lost her husband by death and has not remarried.
Cards. an additional hand or part of a hand, as one dealt to the table.
a short last line of a paragraph, especially one less than half of the full measure or one consisting of only a single word.
the last line of a paragraph when it is carried over to the top of the following page away from the rest of the paragraph. Compare orphan ( def 4 ).
a woman often left alone because her husband devotes his free time to a hobby or sport (used in combination). Compare golf widow.
verb (used with object)
to make (someone) a widow: She was widowed by the war.
to deprive of anything cherished or needed: A surprise attack widowed the army of its supplies.
to endow with a widow's right.
to survive as the widow of.

before 900; (noun) Middle English wid(e)we, Old English widuwe, wydewe; cognate with German Witwe, Gothic widuwo, Latin vidua (feminine of viduus bereaved), Sanskrit vidhavā widow; (v.) Middle English, derivative of the noun

widowly, adjective
unwidowed, adjective

widow, widower.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
widow (ˈwɪdəʊ)
1.  a woman who has survived her husband, esp one who has not remarried
2.  informal (usually with a modifier) a woman whose husband frequently leaves her alone while he indulges in a sport, etc: a golf widow
3.  printing Compare orphan a short line at the end of a paragraph, esp one that occurs as the top line of a page or column
4.  (in some card games) an additional hand or set of cards exposed on the table
5.  to cause to become a widow
6.  to deprive of something valued or desirable
[Old English widuwe; related to German Witwe, Latin vidua (feminine of viduus deprived), Sanskrit vidhavā]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009
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Word Origin & History

O.E. widewe, widuwe, from P.Gmc. *widewo (cf. O.S. widowa, O.Fris. widwe, M.Du., Du. weduwe, Du. weeuw, O.H.G. wituwa, Ger. Witwe, Goth. widuwo), from PIE adj. *widhewo (cf. Skt. vidhuh "lonely, solitary," vidhava "widow;" Avestan vithava, L. vidua, O.C.S. vidova, Rus. vdova, O.Ir. fedb, Welsh guedeu
"widow;" Pers. beva, Gk. eitheos "unmarried man;" L. viduus "bereft, void"), from base *weidh- "to separate" (cf. second element in L. di-videre "to divide;" see with). As a prefix to a name, attested from 1570s. Meaning "short line of type" (especially at the top of a column) is 1904 print shop slang. The verb is attested from c.1300. Widower is first attested mid-14c. Widow's mite is from Mark xii.43. Widow's peak is from the belief that hair growing to a point on the forehead is an omen of early widowhood, suggestive of the "peak" of a widow's hood. Widow maker "anything lethally dangerous" first recorded 1945, originally among loggers, in reference to dead trees, etc. The widow bird (1747) so-called in ref. to the long black tail feathers of the males, suggestive of widows' veils.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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American Heritage
Idioms & Phrases


see grass widow.

The American Heritage® Dictionary of Idioms by Christine Ammer.
Copyright © 1997. Published by Houghton Mifflin.
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Example sentences
The lady was sketching in charcoal the head of her future husband, although she
  wore no widow's veil.
The landlady, who lived next door, was a widow in her seventies.
Upon accepting the honor in his absence, his widow kissed the plaque then held
  it to the heavens.
His widow decided to donate his organs to seven different people.
Idioms & Phrases
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