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[meyd-n-lee] /ˈmeɪd n li/
pertaining to, characteristic of, or befitting a maiden:
a maidenly blush.
Origin of maidenly
late Middle English
late Middle English word dating back to 1400-50; See origin at maiden, -ly
Related forms
maidenliness, noun
unmaidenliness, noun
unmaidenly, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for maidenly
Historical Examples
  • Viviette alone in her maidenly splendour, he could have fought it down.

    Viviette William J. Locke
  • I love thee too, but I think it not maidenly to kiss thee till I'm asked.

    Standish of Standish

    Jane G. Austin
  • But the grey in this case was not so pure, nor were the straightness and the slenderness so maidenly.

    The Tragic Muse

    Henry James
  • Who looked with contempt on girls and disdained their maidenly advances!

  • "Oh, Rupert," with a moan of maidenly horror, and conscious incompetence.

    The Light of Scarthey

    Egerton Castle
  • And where was the knight who should claim her innocent and maidenly heart?

  • (p. 173) "And as good as she was wild—as maidenly as she was pure."

    The Youth of Jefferson J. E. Cooke.
  • The maidenly month of April makes little difference to us here.

    Nights in London

    Thomas Burke
  • Her maidenly instinct—perhaps her duty to another—took the alarm.

  • Color has not yet come into her maidenly days, nor violence of opinion into her womanly years.

    Quaker Hill Warren H. Wilson
British Dictionary definitions for maidenly


of or befitting a maiden
Derived Forms
maidenliness, noun
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 maidenly

mid-15c., from maiden (n.) + -ly (1).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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