- excellence or merit in objects of art, curios, and the like.
- (used with a plural verb) such objects or articles collectively.
- a taste for or knowledge of such objects.
Origin of virtu
Examples from the Web for virtus
The first movement of will and of any appetitive faculty (virtus) is amor.The Mediaeval Mind (Volume II of II)
Henry Osborn Taylor
Libenter igitur gloriabor in infirmitatibus meis, ut inhabitet in me virtus Christi.Selections from the Prose Writings of John Henry Cardinal Newman
John Henry Newman
Such a dot can be seen in a similar place upon two or three coins bearing the legend Virtus Exercit.The Non-Christian Cross
John Denham Parsons
It is the method of Molière's doctors, with their virtus dormitivus of opium, applied to sociology.The Evolution of States
J. M. Robertson
They admitted, as we know from Molire, the virtus dormitiva of opium, for no other reason than that opium facit dormire.A Budget of Paradoxes, Volume II (of II)
Augustus de Morgan
- a taste or love for curios or works of fine art; connoisseurship
- such objects collectively
- the quality of being rare, beautiful, or otherwise appealing to a connoisseur (esp in the phrases articles of virtu; objects of virtu)
Word Origin and History for virtus
"excellence in an object of art, passion for works of art," 1722, from Italian virtu "excellence," from Latin virtutem (nominative virtus) "virtue" (see virtue). The same word as virtue, borrowed during a period when everything Italian was in vogue. Sometimes spelled vertu, after French, but this is unjustified, as this sense of the word is not in French.