maid·​en | \ ˈmā-dᵊn How to pronounce maiden (audio) \

Definition of maiden

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : an unmarried girl or woman : maid
2 : a former Scottish beheading device resembling the guillotine (see guillotine sense 1)
3 : a horse that has never won a race



Definition of maiden (Entry 2 of 2)

1a(1) : not married a maiden aunt
(2) : virgin
b of a female animal
(1) : never yet mated
(2) : never having borne young
2 : of, relating to, or befitting a maiden
3 : first, earliest a ship's maiden voyage the maiden flight of a spacecraft

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Synonyms & Antonyms for maiden

Synonyms: Noun

Synonyms: Adjective

Antonyms: Adjective

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Examples of maiden in a Sentence

Noun a story about a courageous knight who rescues a fair maiden a story about a beautiful maiden and her mysterious father Adjective the maiden issue of a new magazine a politician giving his maiden speech in the Senate
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun The marquee maiden offering was Spotify's successful IPO in May 2018 and gained credibility with Slack's offering a year later. Shawn Tully, Fortune, "Why famed VC Bill Gurley thinks IPOs are such a rip-off," 16 June 2020 Jungle Runner ended his 2-year-old season by breaking his maiden in his third race, then winning the Clever Trevor Stakes at Remington Park in Oklahoma City. Mark Inabinett |, al, "Belmont Stakes 2020: Meet the contenders and watch them run," 15 June 2020 My Native American father drew the Land O’Lakes maiden. Andrew Mark Miller, Washington Examiner, "Son of Land O'Lakes artist defends Native American father's work: Removed design was 'never a stereotype'," 1 May 2020 Despite showrunner Will Davies' best efforts to electrify the stakes with contemporary high-fantasy clichés ranging from sassy maidens to Shamanistic bloodlines, the story remains downright quaint and the climax laughably limp. Robyn Bahr, The Hollywood Reporter, "'The Letter for the King': TV Review," 20 Mar. 2020 All eight of Friday’s races are claimers, four for maidens and four for others. John Cherwa,, "Racing! Congrats to Santa Anita for safe workouts," 12 July 2019 Land O’Lakes is retiring the iconic Native American butter maiden that has appeared on its logo for the past 92 years. Emma Colton, Washington Examiner, "Land O'Lakes ditches iconic Native American butter maiden logo after nearly a century," 16 Apr. 2020 There is one stakes race, two allowance races and the rest are maidens or claiming races. Los Angeles Times, "Racing! Congrats to Pacific Classic winner Higher Power," 18 Aug. 2019 The story of Skell, Llao and the earthly maiden thus seems to be an interpretation of real events that has been passed on intact for almost eight millennia. The Economist, "Geomythology An Australian legend may be the world’s oldest datable story," 27 Feb. 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective His requests for individualized care or other accommodations were delayed, causing gaps in care, Sinema said in her maiden speech on the Senate floor in 2019. Cleo Krejci, The Arizona Republic, "Senate passes Sinema bill to improve access to support services for veterans," 2 July 2020 Virgin Voyages’ Scarlet Lady is officially ready to take its maiden voyage this fall after being postponed in April due to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. Hannah Chubb,, "Virgin Voyages Announces New Sail Date and Health Plan for First Adults-Only Cruise," 23 June 2020 The Scarlet Lady's maiden voyage had been initially scheduled April 1 but was canceled in early March, McAlpin told USA TODAY. Morgan Hines, USA TODAY, "EXCLUSIVE: Virgin Voyages announces 'Voyage Well' health plan for Scarlet Lady ship," 19 June 2020 In January, the CEO of Chinese search engine Baidu—two of whose apps have been red-flagged, Baidu Translate and Baidu Maps—made his maiden visit to India to hire local talent in areas such as artificial intelligence. Niharika Sharma, Quartz India, "Video-sharing, photo editing, e-commerce: 52 Chinese apps that Indian intelligence wants banned," 17 June 2020 The tour included a victory in a maiden special-weight outing at Tampa Bay Downs in January in his third race. Mark Inabinett |, al, "Belmont Stakes 2020: Meet the contenders and watch them run," 15 June 2020 Cezanne made his racing debut Saturday, winning a maiden special weight at Santa Anita by 2 ¼ lengths. Jason Frakes, The Courier-Journal, "Report: Bob Baffert-trained Charlatan to miss Belmont and Kentucky Derby with injury," 7 June 2020 In 1935, the French liner Normandie set a record on its maiden voyage, arriving in New York after crossing the Atlantic in just four days., "This day in history," 3 June 2020 All-in, that leaves an F1 driver just three days on the oval to prepare for his maiden voyage in the biggest single-day sporting event in the world. Nathan Brown, The Indianapolis Star, "With no overlap for Monaco and the 2021 Indy 500, could an active F1 driver attempt a new 'Double'?," 3 June 2020

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

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First Known Use of maiden


before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1


14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a(1)

History and Etymology for maiden

Noun and Adjective

Middle English, from Old English mægden, mǣden, diminutive of mægeth; akin to Old High German magad maiden, Old Irish mug serf

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Time Traveler for maiden

Time Traveler

The first known use of maiden was before the 12th century

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Statistics for maiden

Last Updated

25 Jun 2020

Cite this Entry

“Maiden.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 9 Jul. 2020.

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More Definitions for maiden


How to pronounce maiden (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of maiden

 (Entry 1 of 2)

old-fashioned + literary : a young girl or woman who is not married



English Language Learners Definition of maiden (Entry 2 of 2)

of a woman, old-fashioned : not married
: coming before all others : first or earliest


maid·​en | \ ˈmā-dᵊn How to pronounce maiden (audio) \

Kids Definition of maiden

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: an unmarried girl or woman



Kids Definition of maiden (Entry 2 of 2)

2 : first entry 1 This is our maiden voyage to Europe.

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More from Merriam-Webster on maiden

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for maiden

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with maiden

Spanish Central: Translation of maiden

Nglish: Translation of maiden for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of maiden for Arabic Speakers

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