One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
A membrane which partially closes the opening of the vagina and whose presence is traditionally taken to be a mark of virginity.
- ‘Girls frequently have a membrane called the hymen around the vaginal opening.’
- ‘Examination of her hymen showed a dilated orifice after initial spasm and inability to relax.’
- ‘As with the appendix, most lab coats say the hymen no longer serves much of a biological function.’
- ‘The hymen can be broken through activities such as wearing tampons or playing sports.’
- ‘She provides further evidence that on her return to Iran she was suffering from a urinary tract infection and that her hymen was broken.’
- ‘Traditional Muslim social norms associate female virginity, defined by an intact hymen, with honour.’
- ‘Many of the girls feel that as long as their hymen is intact, they are considered virgins.’
- ‘So in essence the damages have very little to do with a tear in the hymen or a tag of the anus.’
- ‘Women have a membrane called the hymen that partially covers the entrance to the vagina.’
- ‘Most women experience discomfort and bleeding the first time they have sexual intercourse due to the stretching or tearing of their hymen.’
- ‘Genitalia were noted to be normal externally, but the hymen appeared to be somewhat distorted and scarred with a rather high free edge.’
- ‘Recent or healed lacerations of the hymen and vaginal mucosa may indicate abuse.’
- ‘Foster said girls whose hymens had been pierced were considered outcasts.’
- ‘The hymen was not simply a sign or proof of chastity; rather, being physically ‘intact’ supposedly imparted strength, youth and holiness to the woman.’
- ‘A thin sheet of tissue with 1 or more holes in it called the hymen partially covers the opening of the vagina.’
- ‘In the female virgin the entrance to the vagina is often partially blocked by a membranous tissue called the hymen.’
- ‘The elders also inspect the girls' vaginas to determine if their hymens are still intact.’
- ‘So, essentially, the hymen is a small bit of skin that may hurt a bit if it is torn somehow, but will go away by itself even if it isn't broken.’
- ‘Is it the breaking of the hymen, are bones displaced or is it something else?’
- ‘I really don't feel like sacrificing my hymen.’
Mid 16th century: via late Latin from Greek humēn ‘membrane’.
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