vir·ile (vîrəl, -īl′)
1. Of, relating to, or having the characteristics of an adult male, especially in having the ability to have sexual intercourse.
2. Masculine in a robust way; manly: "[He] was a man of action, a virile director who brought out the best in the screenplay" (Jeffrey Meyers).
3. Energetic or forceful: a virile performance of the concerto.
[Middle English, from Old French viril, from Latin virīlis, from vir, man; see wī-ro- in the Appendix of Indo-European roots.]
vi·rili·ty (və-rĭlĭ-tē) n.
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2020 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
Indo-European & Semitic Roots Appendices
Thousands of entries in the dictionary include etymologies that trace their origins back to reconstructed proto-languages. You can obtain more information about these forms in our online appendices:
The Indo-European appendix covers nearly half of the Indo-European roots that have left their mark on English words. A more complete treatment of Indo-European roots and the English words derived from them is available in our Dictionary of Indo-European Roots.