It forms all or part of: curia; Fergus; triumvir; triumvirate; Weltanschauung; Weltschmerz; werewolf; wergeld; world; virago; virile; virility; virtue; virtuosity; virtuoso; virtuous.
It is the hypothetical source of/evidence for its existence is provided by: Sanskrit virah, Avestan vira-, Latin vir, Lithuanian vyras, Old Irish fer, Welsh gwr, Gothic wair, Old English wer "a man."
"remarkable person or thing," 1886, of uncertain origin but likely a reference to Lulu Hurst (1869-1950), the "Georgia Wonder," who was a popular attraction 1883-85 demonstrating her supposed mysterious "force" that allowed her to effortlessly move, with just a light touch, umbrellas and canes held tight by others. She barnstormed the U.S. and, at 15, was, briefly, one of the most famous women in the land. The skeptics soon explained her trick and burst the bubble, but not before her name was used as a word:
Such [musically uneducated persons] start from the avowed or unavowed supposition that the pianist or violinist's art necessitates no higher qualities than does plate-spinning, dancing, or the feats of a Lulu. ["The Hero as Virtuoso," in London Society, vol. 43, June 1883]