chaster; chastest
: innocent of unlawful sexual intercourse
: celibate
Monks lead a chaste life.
: pure in thought and act : modest
was sincerely trying to be chaste
: severely simple in design or execution : austere
chaste classicism
the pure, chaste lines of ancient Greek buildings
chastely adverb
chasteness noun

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Choose the Right Synonym for chaste

chaste, pure, modest, decent mean free from all taint of what is lewd or salacious.

chaste primarily implies a refraining from acts or even thoughts or desires that are not virginal or not sanctioned by marriage vows.

they maintained chaste relations

pure differs from chaste in implying innocence and absence of temptation rather than control of one's impulses and actions.

the pure of heart

modest and decent apply especially to deportment and dress as outward signs of inward chastity or purity.

preferred more modest swimsuits
decent people didn't go to such movies

Example Sentences

a chaste kiss on the cheek as one would expect, the minister's small talk is always chaste, even though he likes a joke as much as the next person
Recent Examples on the Web But not a saint in terms of being chaste and pure and sexless. Abby Diamond, Billboard, 2 Sep. 2022 Lynnia Shanley’s performance as Andrew’s squealy and ultra-chaste actress girlfriend Deidre is exuberant, but never feels like a real person. Pam Kragen, San Diego Union-Tribune, 31 May 2022 These chaste messages gave rise to a more offbeat (and unofficial) transmission in the 1980s. Sarah Kuta, Smithsonian Magazine, 18 May 2022 Even in chaste scenes, Acosta’s tenor and Hadley’s baritone swirl within each other in an aural reflection of sensual passion. Bill Hirschman, Sun Sentinel, 25 Apr. 2022 Star Jonathan Bailey, who plays romantic lead Anthony Bridgerton, stood by the more chaste season. David Oliver, USA TODAY, 30 Mar. 2022 But that’s about it for an interior life, and even his hallucinations are chaste and not terribly interesting. Jessica Kiang, Variety, 15 Feb. 2022 Their love story is intense, chaste and entirely winning. New York Times, 14 Feb. 2022 In these images, the puzzle represents the enigma of female desire and fuels the intimacy between men and women in an otherwise chaste culture of heterosexual courtship. Anna Shechtman, The New Yorker, 20 Dec. 2021 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'chaste.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

Word History


Middle English, from Anglo-French, from Latin castus pure

First Known Use

13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of chaste was in the 13th century

Dictionary Entries Near chaste

Cite this Entry

“Chaste.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 27 Sep. 2022.

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Kids Definition

chaster; chastest
: pure in thought and act : modest
: simple or plain in design

More from Merriam-Webster on chaste

Last Updated: 14 Sep 2022

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