fornication

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English[edit]

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Etymology[edit]

From Old French fornicacion, from Latin fornicatio, from fornix (brothel).

Pronunciation[edit]

Noun[edit]

fornication (countable and uncountable, plural fornications)

  1. Sexual intercourse, especially on the part of an unmarried person.
  2. (law) The act of such illicit sexual intercourse between a man and a woman which does not by law amount to adultery.
    • 1589 or 90, Christopher Marlowe, The Jew of Malta, Act IV:
      FRIAR BARNARDINE. Thou hast committed—
      BARABAS. Fornication: but that was in another country;
      And besides, the wench is dead.
    • 1604, William Shakespeare, Measure for Measure, Act V, Scene 1:
      I am the sister of one Claudio,
      Condemned upon the act of fornication
      To lose his head, condemned by Angelo
    • 1611, King James Version, Galatians 5:19–21:
      Now the works of the flesh are manifest, which are these; Adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness, Idolatry, witchcraft, hatred, variance, emulations, wrath, strife, seditions, heresies, Envyings, murders, drunkenness, revellings, and such like: of the which I tell you before, as I have also told you in time past, that they which do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God.

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