• Latin: viduus, bereft; cf. dividere, to divide


A woman whose husband is dead, and who has not re-married. Among the Hebrews widows were respected, and supported, if in need (Deuteronomy 25:2 Machabees 3). They have been an object of care in the Church since its foundation (Acts, 6), and at times formed bodies of consecrated women in the early Church. According to the Council of Trent (Session XXIV), 15451563, widowhood is held to be more commendable than re-marriage, but this is a matter which has to be determined according to God’s will in each individual case.

Additional Information

MLA Citation

  • “widow”. New Catholic Dictionary. CatholicSaints.Info. 11 November 2019. Web. 27 February 2021. <>