And oh, to think that he should have disobeyed and practised on that sweet, that venerable gentleman, whose name he bore; that kind and tender guardian; his more than father—to say nothing at all of mother—horrible, horrible!
-- Charles Dickens, The Life and Adventures of Martin Chuzzlewit, 1843-1844
...one would think that to look on while a pair of venerable hands pressed such young heads, and a venerable face looked upward for a blessing on them, would be very likely to make the heart swell gently, and to moisten the eyes.
-- George Eliot, Scenes of Clerical Life, 1857
Venerable first appeared in English in the 1400s from the Latin venerari meaning "to worship or revere."