adjective vir·tu·ous \ˈvər-chə-wəs, ˈvərch-wəs\

: morally good : having or showing virtue

Full Definition of VIRTUOUS

a :  having or exhibiting virtue — (see virtue)
b :  morally excellent :  righteous <a virtuous decision>
:  chaste
vir·tu·ous·ly adverb
vir·tu·ous·ness noun

Examples of VIRTUOUS

  1. In a kind of virtuous circle, the second tier schools got better as applications rose and they could become choosier in assembling a class—which in turn raised the quality of the whole experience on campus and made the school more attractive to both topflight professors and the next wave of applicants. —Nancy Gibbs et al., Time, 21 Aug. 2006

Origin of VIRTUOUS

(see virtue)
First Known Use: 14th century

Synonym Discussion of VIRTUOUS

moral, ethical, virtuous, righteous, noble mean conforming to a standard of what is right and good. moral implies conformity to established sanctioned codes or accepted notions of right and wrong <the basic moral values of a community>. ethical may suggest the involvement of more difficult or subtle questions of rightness, fairness, or equity <committed to the highest ethical principles>. virtuous implies moral excellence in character <not a religious person, but virtuous nevertheless>. righteous stresses guiltlessness or blamelessness and often suggests the sanctimonious <wished to be righteous before God and the world>. noble implies moral eminence and freedom from anything petty, mean, or dubious in conduct and character <had the noblest of reasons for seeking office>.
VIRTUOUS Defined for Kids


adjective vir·tu·ous \ˈvər-chə-wəs\

Definition of VIRTUOUS for Kids

:  morally good :  having or showing virtue
vir·tu·ous·ly adverb <act virtuously>


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