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 Indian maiden is 12 inches tall, the Sun Valley dish is 7 inches in diameter and the cougar is 9 inches wide. oregonlive, 2 June 2021 Rock Your World did not race as a 2-year-old but opened 2021 on Jan. 1 by breaking his maiden with a 1.75-length victory at Santa Anita Park. Mark Inabinett |, al, 31 May 2021 There are three allowance-type races and one maiden special. John Cherwa, Los Angeles Times, 24 Apr. 2021 There are three allowance races and two maiden special weights. John Cherwa, Los Angeles Times, 15 May 2021 Classic Empire broke his maiden Derby week for Casse. Morgan Watkins, The Courier-Journal, 29 Apr. 2021 The helicopter’s maiden flight was a pretty low-weight affair. Mike Wehner, BGR, 21 Apr. 2021 Goerke sang one of her signature roles, the warrior-maiden Brünnhilde. Mark Stryker, Detroit Free Press, 23 Mar. 2021 Bourbonic won a $50,000 maiden-claiming race on a good track on Dec. 20. Jon Hale, The Courier-Journal, 27 Apr. 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective Overtook got his lone win in a maiden special weight race at Aqueduct on Dec. 20. Mark Inabinett |, al, 31 May 2021 The son of Twirling Candy won his maiden race Feb. 7 before finishing third in both the Grade 2 San Felipe and Grade 1 Santa Anita Derby. Jason Frakes, The Courier-Journal, 23 Apr. 2021 When Known Agenda won a 1 1/8-mile maiden race by a head at Aqueduct last Nov. 8, Greatest Honour was the runner-up and finished a whopping 21 lengths in front of third-place finisher Overtook. John Cherwa, Los Angeles Times, 26 Mar. 2021 Going from a maiden race into a Grade 1 stakes is a tall task, Joseph acknowledged. Tom Jicha,, 25 Mar. 2021 The airplane's flight test prototype, the XB-1, will be 100% carbon-neutral, the company claims, and is expected to make its maiden flight later this year in Mojave, California. Paul Sillers, CNN, 28 May 2021 The first Space Launch System will launch late this year on an unpiloted maiden flight, sending an Orion capsule on a long, looping trip around the moon. CBS News, 21 May 2021 On Wednesday, the first second-hand F-16 earned FAA certification and completed its maiden flight for Top Aces. Rachel Cormack, Robb Report, 20 May 2021 The opener is a maiden special weight with a pair of first-time starters that look live. John Cherwa, Los Angeles Times, 15 May 2021

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

14 Jun 2021

Cite this Entry

“Maiden.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 23 Jun. 2021.

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More Definitions for maiden



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)

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


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