Venus

noun

Ve·​nus ˈvē-nəs How to pronounce Venus (audio)
1
: the Roman goddess of love and beauty compare aphrodite
2
: the planet second in order from the sun see Planets Table

Word History

Etymology

Latin Vener-, Venus, deified abstraction from an originally neuter common noun venus "sexual desire, qualities exciting desire, charm"; akin to Sanskrit vanate "(s/he) likes, takes pleasure in," -vana- "loving," vāñchati "(s/he) desires, wishes," Old English wȳscan "to wish," wunian "to remain, dwell," Old Norse una "to be satisfied"

Note: Latin venus, as probably also Vedic Sanskrit vanas-, a hapax legomenon of uncertain meaning, is an s-stem derivative from a verbal base going back to Indo-European *wenH- "wish, desire," most likely distinct from *wen- "struggle, gain"; see win entry 1.

First Known Use

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

Time Traveler
The first known use of Venus was before the 12th century

Dictionary Entries Near Venus

Cite this Entry

“Venus.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/Venus. Accessed 4 Dec. 2022.

Kids Definition

Venus

noun

Ve·​nus ˈvē-nəs How to pronounce Venus (audio)
: the planet second in order from the sun see planet

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