Etymology
Advertisement

virtu (n.)

"excellence in an object of art, passion for works of art," 1722, from Italian virtu "excellence," from Latin virtutem (nominative virtus) "virtue, goodness, manliness" (see virtue). The same word as virtue, borrowed during a period when everything Italian was in vogue. Sometimes spelled vertu, as though from French, but this sense of the word is not in French.

updated on March 17, 2014

Advertisement
Advertisement
Definitions of virtu from WordNet

virtu (n.)
love of or taste for fine objects of art;
Synonyms: vertu / connoisseurship
virtu (n.)
artistic quality;
Synonyms: vertu
virtu (n.)
objet d'art collectively (especially fine antiques);
From wordnet.princeton.edu, not affiliated with etymonline.