Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • adj. Roman Mythology Of or relating to Vesta.
  • adj. Roman Mythology Relating to or characteristic of the vestal virgins.
  • adj. Chaste; pure.
  • n. Roman Mythology A vestal virgin.
  • n. A woman who is a virgin.
  • n. A nun.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • adj. Of or pertaining to Vesta, the virgin goddess of the hearth.
  • adj. Pure; chaste.
  • n. A virgin consecrated to Vesta, and to the service of watching the sacred fire, which was to be perpetually kept burning upon her altar.
  • n. A female virgin; a woman who has never had sexual relations.
  • n. A nun.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • adj. Of or pertaining to Vesta, the virgin goddess of the hearth; hence, pure; chaste.
  • n. A virgin consecrated to Vesta, and to the service of watching the sacred fire, which was to be perpetually kept burning upon her altar.
  • n. A virgin; a woman pure and chaste; also, a nun.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • Of or pertaining to Vesta, the classical goddess of the sacred fire and of the household and the state.
  • Pertaining to or characteristic of a vestal virgin or a nun.
  • n. Among the ancient Romans, a virgin consecrated to Vesta and to the service of watching the sacred fire, which was kept perpetually burning upon her altar.
  • n. Hence A virgin; a woman of spotless chastity; sometimes, a virgin who devotes her life entirely to the service of religion; a nun; a religieuse.
  • n. In entomology: The geometrid moth Sterrha sacraria: popularly so called in England, A gossamer-winged butterfly; any member of the Vestales.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • adj. of or relating to Vesta
  • adj. in a state of sexual virginity
  • n. a chaste woman

Etymologies

Sorry, no etymologies found.

Examples

  • Someone assumed that since I am a "linguist", I'd know the meaning of "vestal"--they wanted to know why they're called "vestal virgins."

    Teaching and translating

  • The notion often prevails that if there be in the heart this divine witness of God's Spirit, it must needs be perfect, clearly indicating its origin by an exemption from all that besets ordinary human feelings, that it must be a strong, uniform, never flickering, never darkening, and perpetual light, a kind of vestal fire burning always on the altar of the heart!

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  • Dalisi began to sketch tin pots with stick arms and stick legs, forming characters such as vestal virgins, traffic cops and the Pulcinella-like comedian.

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  • Other species lured by the Indian summer include the distinctive crimson speckled, the dainty vestal moth and Spoladea recurvalis, an extremely rare tropical species.

    Indian summer sees exotic moths fly in

  • Large numbers of vestal moths and a few crimson speckled moths, both normally resident in the Mediterranean, have been seen on the south-west and south-east coasts and in Gwynedd.

    Heatwave brings rare moths to UK

  • This week all over the media yet another presidential vestal intern revealed the details of her sad 50-year-old saga of 18 months worth of sort-of-secret liaisons with JFK of Blessed Memory.

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  • They believe in the Tooth Fairy myth, the myth of the vestal virgin.

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  • Lucy, thank you for doing the vestal virgin thing — keeping the flame burning, I mean.

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  • The vestal virgins looked the other way though, when I brought my daughter in, wrapped her in one of the fluffy bathrobes and let her check out the igloo.

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  • Called Aquavana Thermal Suites, this over-the-top pampering den is a temple of female bodily bliss, tended by Latina vestal virgins with long flowing hair.

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