[ ves-tl ]
See synonyms for: vestalvestals on

  1. of or relating to the goddess Vesta.

  2. of, relating to, or characteristic of a vestal virgin; chaste; pure.

  1. a chaste unmarried woman; virgin.

  1. a nun.

Origin of vestal

1400–50; late Middle English (adj.) <Latin vestālis.See Vesta, -al1

Words Nearby vestal Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

How to use vestal in a sentence

  • The vestal virgins received especial honor, and were appointed by the Pontifex Maximus.

  • "The vestal virgins here are old men," replied Ralph, wickedly pleased to get a joke on the lady.

    Overland | John William De Forest
  • He has now decided to void the virginity of the vestal, and to assume that she was in reality a demon, and not a being of earth.

    Devil-Worship in France | Arthur Edward Waite
  • Who does not remember "Beechenbrook," that pure vestal in the temple of Mars?

  • Four or five hours ago she had entered that car as "free from the trammels of passion" as a vestal virgin.

    Southern Hearts | Florence Hull Winterburn

British Dictionary definitions for vestal


/ (ˈvɛstəl) /

  1. chaste or pure; virginal

  2. of or relating to the Roman goddess Vesta

  1. a chaste woman; virgin

  2. a rare word for nun 1 (def. 1)

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