Dictionary > Virtue


1. Manly strength or courage; bravery; daring; spirit; valor. Built too strong For force or virtue ever to expugn. (Chapman)
2. Active quality or power; capacity or power adequate to the production of a given effect; energy; strength; potency; efficacy; as, the virtue of a medicine. Jesus, immediately knowing in himself that virtue had gone out of him, turned him about. (mark v. 30) A man was driven to depend for his security against misunderstanding, upon the pure virtue of his syntax. (De Quincey) The virtue of his midnight agony. (Keble)
3. Energy or influence operating without contact of the material or sensible substance. She moves the body which she doth possess, yet no part toucheth, but by virtue’s touch. (Sir. J. Davies)
4. Excellence; value; merit; meritoriousness; worth. I made virtue of necessity. (Chaucer) In the greek poets, . . . The economy of poems is better observed than in Terence, who thought the sole grace and virtue of their fable the sticking in of sentences. (B. Jonson)
5. Specifically, moral excellence; integrity of character; purity of soul; performance of duty. Virtue only makes our bliss below. (pope) If there’s power above us, And that there is all nature cries aloud through all her works, he must delight in virtue. (Addison)
6. A particular moral excellence; as, the virt
ue of temperance, of charity, etc. The very virtue of compassion. . Remember all his virtues. .
7. Specifically: Chastity; purity; especially, the chastity of women; virginity. H. I believe the girl has virtue. M. And if she has, I should be the last man in the world to attempt to corrupt it. (goldsmith)
8. One of the orders of the celestial hierarchy. Thrones, dominations, princedoms, virtues, powers. (milton) cardinal virtues. See Cardinal, In, or By, virtue of, through the force of; by authority of. He used to travel through Greece by virtue of this fable, which procured him reception in all the towns. . This they shall attain, partly in virtue of the promise made by god, and partly in virtue of piety. . Theological virtues, the three virtues, faith, hope, and charity. See .
Origin: OE. Vertu, F. Vertu, L. Virtus strength, courage, excellence, virtue, fr. Vir a man. See Virile, and cf. Virtu.

You will also like...

A chart depicting Mendel's Law of Dominance
Mendel’s Law & Mendelian Genetics

One of Mendel’s law of inheritance is the “law of dominance”. Read this tutorial to know more about this form of i..

Growth and Plant Hormones
Growth and Plant Hormones

Plants, like animals, produce hormones to regulate plant activities, including growth. They need these hormones to respo..

A Balanced Vitamin Diet – Vitamins A – K

A balanced diet is essential to a healthy organism. Insufficiency or too much of a particular element or compound, such ..

Regulation of Biological Systems
Regulation of Biological Systems

Regulation of Biological Systems tutorials are focused on the modulation of biological systems from cell to population l..

Body temperature regulation by the hypothalamus
Temperature Regulation in Animals

This tutorial elucidates body temperature regulation. Know the details here to learn how the body sets the body temperat..

Peppered moth ("Biston betularia") melanic and light form
Examples of Natural Selection

Darwin's Finches are an example of natural selection in action. They are an excellent example of the way species' gene p..