- spirituous liquor, as brandy or whiskey.
Origin of aqua vitae
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018
Examples from the Web for aqua vitae
Many a cask of ale and cider is on tap, and many a draught of spiced wine and aqua-vitae has been quaffed.Main Street
- an archaic name for brandy
Medieval Latin: water of life
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
Word Origin and History for aqua vitae
early 15c., Latin, literally "water of life," an alchemical term for unrefined alcohol. Applied to brandy, whiskey, etc. from 1540s. Cf. whiskey, also French eau-de-vie "spirits, brandy," literally "water of life."
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper