Maiden

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Dictionary Meaning and Definition on 'Maiden'

Maiden Meaning and Definition from WordNet (r) 2.0
    maiden adj : serving to set in motion; "the magazine's inaugural issue"; "the initiative phase in the negotiations"; "an initiatory step toward a treaty"; "his first (or maiden) speech in Congress"; "the liner's maiden voyage" [syn: inaugural, initiative, initiatory, first] n
  1. an unmarried girl (especially a virgin) [syn: maid]
  2. (cricket) an over in which no runs are scored [syn: maiden over}]
Maiden Meaning and Definition from Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary (1913)
    Maiden \Maid"en\, a.
  1. Of or pertaining to a maiden, or to maidens; suitable to, or characteristic of, a virgin; as, maiden innocence. ``Amid the maiden throng.'' --Addison. Have you no modesty, no maiden shame ? --Shak.
  2. Never having been married; not having had sexual intercourse; virgin; -- said usually of the woman, but sometimes of the man; as, a maiden aunt. ``A surprising old maiden lady.'' --Thackeray.
  3. Fresh; innocent; unpolluted; pure; hitherto unused. ``Maiden flowers.'' --Shak. Full bravely hast thou fleshed Thy maiden sword. --Shak.
  4. Used of a fortress, signifying that it has never been captured, or violated. -- T. Warton. Macaulay. Maiden assize (Eng. Law), an assize which there is no criminal prosecution; an assize which is unpolluted with blood. It was usual, at such an assize, for the sheriff to present the judge with a pair of white gloves. --Smart. Maiden name, the surname of a woman before her marriage. Maiden pink. (Bot.) See under Pink. Maiden plum (Bot.), a West Indian tree (Comocladia integrifolia}) with purplish drupes. The sap of the tree is glutinous, and gives a persistent black stain. Maiden speech, the first speech made by a person, esp. by a new member in a public body. Maiden tower, the tower most capable of resisting an enemy.
Maiden Meaning and Definition from Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary (1913)
    Maiden \Maid"en\, n. [OE. maiden, meiden, AS. m[ae]gden, dim. of AS. m[ae]g?, fr. mago son, servant; akin to G. magd, m["a]dchen, maid, OHG. magad, Icel. m["o]gr son, Goth. magus boy, child, magaps virgin, and perh. to Zend. magu youth. Cf. Maid a virgin.]
  1. An unmarried woman; a girl or woman who has not experienced sexual intercourse; a virgin; a maid.
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Wikipedia Meaning and Definition on 'Maiden'


A virgin (or maiden) originally meant a woman who has never had sexual intercourse. Virginity is the state of being a virgin. It is derived from the Latin virgo, which means "sexually inexperienced woman". As in Latin, the English word is also often used with wider reference, by relaxing the age, gender or sexual criteria. Hence, more mature women can be virgins (The Virgin Queen), men can be virgins, and potential initiates into many fields can be colloquially termed virgins; for example, a skydiving "virgin". In the latter usage, virgin simply means uninitiated.

By extension from its primary sense, the idea that a virgin has a sexual "blank slate",

The loss of virginity may call to mind the end of innocence, and the beginning of sexual maturity. In this association "virgin" often references the first instance of a potentially extended series of like events. Just as extra-virgin olive oil is from the first pressing, so a maiden or virgin speech is an incumbent's first address. The same metaphor, using the synonym maiden, is applied to the first or maiden voyage of a ship. In cricket, a maiden over is an over from which no runs were scored. Maiden castles are those with the reputation of never having been captured.

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'Maiden' in famous quotation sentence


* Such is the common process of marriage. A youth and maiden exchange meeting by chance, or brought together by artifice, exchange glances, reciprocate civilities, go home, and dream of one another. Having little to divert attention, or diversify thought, they find themselves uneasy when they are apart, and therefore conclude that they shall be happy together. They marry, and discover what nothing but voluntary blindness had before concealed they wear out life in altercations, and charge nature with cruelty. - Samuel Johnson

* I don't have a bank account, because I don't know my mother's maiden name. - Paula Poundstone


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