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2 definitions found

From: Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary (1913)

 Vir·tue n.
 1. Manly strength or courage; bravery; daring; spirit; valor.  [Obs.]
 Built too strong
 For force or virtue ever to expugn.   --Chapman.
 2. Active quality or power; capacity or power adequate to the production of a given effect; energy; strength; potency; efficacy; as, the virtue of a medicine.
    Jesus, immediately knowing in himself that virtue had gone out of him, turned him about.   --Mark v. 30.
    A man was driven to depend for his security against misunderstanding, upon the pure virtue of his syntax.   --De Quincey.
    The virtue of his midnight agony.   --Keble.
 3. Energy or influence operating without contact of the material or sensible substance.
 She moves the body which she doth possess,
 Yet no part toucheth, but by virtue's touch.   --Sir. J. Davies.
 4. Excellence; value; merit; meritoriousness; worth.
    I made virtue of necessity.   --Chaucer.
    In the Greek poets, . . . the economy of poems is better observed than in Terence, who thought the sole grace and virtue of their fable the sticking in of sentences.   --B. Jonson.
 5. Specifically, moral excellence; integrity of character; purity of soul; performance of duty.
    Virtue only makes our bliss below.   --Pope.
 If there's Power above us,
 And that there is all nature cries aloud
 Through all her works, he must delight in virtue.   --Addison.
 6. A particular moral excellence; as, the virtue of temperance, of charity, etc.  “The very virtue of compassion.” --Shak. “Remember all his virtues.” --Addison.
 7. Specifically: Chastity; purity; especially, the chastity of women; virginity.
 H. I believe the girl has virtue.
 M.  And if she has, I should be the last man in the world to attempt to corrupt it.   --Goldsmith.
 8. pl. One of the orders of the celestial hierarchy.
    Thrones, dominations, princedoms, virtues, powers.   --Milton.
 Cardinal virtues. See under Cardinal, a.
 In virtue of, or By virtue of, through the force of; by authority of.  “He used to travel through Greece by virtue of this fable, which procured him reception in all the towns.” --Addison. “This they shall attain, partly in virtue of the promise made by God, and partly in virtue of piety.” --Atterbury.
 Theological virtues, the three virtues, faith, hope, and charity.  See --1 Cor. xiii. 13.

From: Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary (1913)

 Car·di·nal a.  Of fundamental importance; preëminent; superior; chief; principal.
    The cardinal intersections of the zodiac.   --Sir T. Browne.
    Impudence is now a cardinal virtue.   --Drayton.
    But cardinal sins, and hollow hearts, I fear ye.   --Shak.
 Cardinal numbers, the numbers one, two, three, etc., in distinction from first, second, third, etc., which are called {ordinal numbers}.
 Cardinal points (a) Geol. The four principal points of the compass, or intersections of the horizon with the meridian and the prime vertical circle, north, south east, and west. (b) Astrol. The rising and setting of the sun, the zenith and nadir.
 Cardinal signs Astron. Aries, Libra, Cancer, and Capricorn.
 Cardinal teeth Zool., the central teeth of bivalve shell. See Bivalve.
 Cardinal veins Anat., the veins in vertebrate embryos, which run each side of the vertebral column and returm the blood to the heart. They remain through life in some fishes.
 Cardinal virtues, preëminent virtues; among the ancients, prudence, justice, temperance, and fortitude.
 Cardinal winds, winds which blow from the cardinal points due north, south, east, or west.