theological virtues


From The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48:

Virtue \Vir"tue\ (?; 135), n. [OE. vertu, F. vertu, L. virtus
   strength, courage, excellence, virtue, fr. vir a man. See
   Virile, and cf. Virtu.]
   1. Manly strength or courage; bravery; daring; spirit; valor.
      [Obs.] --Shak.
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            Built too strong
            For force or virtue ever to expugn.   --Chapman.
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   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.
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            Jesus, immediately knowing in himself that virtue
            had gone out of him, turned him about. --Mark v. 30.
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            A man was driven to depend for his security against
            misunderstanding, upon the pure virtue of his
            syntax.                               --De Quincey.
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            The virtue of his midnight agony.     --Keble.
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   3. Energy or influence operating without contact of the
      material or sensible substance.
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            She moves the body which she doth possess,
            Yet no part toucheth, but by virtue's touch. --Sir.
                                                  J. Davies.
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   4. Excellence; value; merit; meritoriousness; worth.
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            I made virtue of necessity.           --Chaucer.
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            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.
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   5. Specifically, moral excellence; integrity of character;
      purity of soul; performance of duty.
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            Virtue only makes our bliss below.    --Pope.
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            If there's Power above us,
            And that there is all nature cries aloud
            Through all her works, he must delight in virtue.
                                                  --Addison.
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   6. A particular moral excellence; as, the virtue of
      temperance, of charity, etc. "The very virtue of
      compassion." --Shak. "Remember all his virtues."
      --Addison.
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   7. Specifically: Chastity; purity; especially, the chastity
      of women; virginity.
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            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.
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   8. pl. One of the orders of the celestial hierarchy.
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            Thrones, dominations, princedoms, virtues, powers.
                                                  --Milton.
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   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.
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