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[cheyst] /tʃeɪst/
adjective, chaster, chastest.
refraining from sexual intercourse that is regarded as contrary to morality or religion; virtuous.
not engaging in sexual relations; celibate.
free from obscenity; decent:
chaste conversation.
undefiled or stainless:
chaste, white snow.
pure in style; not excessively ornamented; simple.
Obsolete. unmarried.
Origin of chaste
1175-1225; Middle English < Old French < Latin castus clean, pure, chaste
Related forms
chastely, adverb
chasteness, noun
Can be confused
celibate, chaste.
chased, chaste.
chaste, chest.
1. continent. 4. clean, elevated. 5. unsullied. 6. unaffected, unadorned, neat; classic; elegant.
1. immoral. 4. coarse. 5. debased. 6. ornate. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for chastely
Historical Examples
  • His little windows were chastely swathed in Nottingham lace.

    A Room With A View E. M. Forster
  • The hand which was yielded to his pressed it gently, timidly, chastely.

    The Parisians, Complete Edward Bulwer-Lytton
  • The one above the front door was chastely shrouded by inside shutters.


    George Looms
  • I thought it might be given to man to love tenderly and chastely.

    Robert Annys: Poor Priest Annie Nathan Meyer
  • These men lived poorly and chastely, and did the office of Levites.

  • In the dinner scene of the play his stage was chastely beautiful.

    Ivory Apes and Peacocks James Huneker
  • He chastely dropped his eyes before everything which was not the Republic.

    Les Misrables Victor Hugo
  • It chastely rebuked the restless husbands, yet brought them a message of healing.

    Babbitt Sinclair Lewis
  • The public morals are insecure till the family is chastely planted, the state guarded by the continency of its male members.


    Amos Bronson Alcott
  • Two well-worn saddle-bag chairs stood before the hearth, and between them a chastely designed little table.

    The Record of Nicholas Freydon

    A. J. (Alec John) Dawson
British Dictionary definitions for chastely


not having experienced sexual intercourse; virginal
abstaining from sexual intercourse, esp that which is unlawful or immoral
(of conduct, speech, etc) pure; decent; modest
(of style or taste) free from embellishment; simple; restrained
Derived Forms
chastely, adverb
chasteness, noun
Word Origin
C13: from Old French, from Latin castus pure; compare caste
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for chastely



c.1200, "virtuous, pure from unlawful sexual intercourse" (as defined by the Church), from Old French chaste "morally pure" (12c.), from Latin castus "clean, pure, morally pure" (see caste). Transferred sense of "sexually pure" is by 15c., perhaps by influence of chastity, though chaste as a noun meaning "virgin person" is recorded from early 14c. Related: Chastely.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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