from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. Wisps of precipitation streaming from a cloud but evaporating before reaching the ground.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A type of note used in plainsong notation, having a tail.
  • n. A streak of rain or snow that is dissipated in falling and does not reach the ground, commonly appearing descending from a cloud layer.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. The penis.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. light wispy precipitation that evaporates before it reaches the ground (especially when the lower air is low in humidity)


Latin, twig, virga.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Latin virga ("rod"). (Wiktionary)



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  • The Century Dictionary’s entry appears incomplete, yet seems the most etymologically apt.
    And the two etymology entries – is the one a counter-statement to the other?

    October 19, 2013

  • The kind of rain that spammers offer you for $1.99 each.

    November 19, 2008

  • often also applied to the curtain-like appearance of distant clouds with rain or snow falling from them

    November 19, 2008

  • A term for rain that doesn't reach the ground

    December 12, 2006