Definitions for vestal virgin
This page provides all possible meanings and translations of the word vestal virgin
Random House Webster's College Dictionary
(in ancient Rome) any of the women, pledged to remain virgins, who tended the sacred fire in Vesta's sanctuary.
Origin of vestal virgin:
(Roman mythology) one of the virgin priestesses consecrated to the Roman goddess Vesta and to maintaining the sacred fire in her temple
a virgin dedicated to the service of the goddess Vesta
a chaste woman
Origin: Latin; virgines Vestales referred to the priestesses in charge of the sacred fire in the temple of Vesta in Rome
In ancient Roman religion, the Vestals or Vestal Virgins, were priestesses of Vesta, goddess of the hearth. The College of the Vestals and its well-being was regarded as fundamental to the continuance and security of Rome. They cultivated the sacred fire that was not allowed to go out. The Vestals were freed of the usual social obligations to marry and bear children, and took a vow of chastity in order to devote themselves to the study and correct observance of state rituals that were off-limits to the male colleges of priests.
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