Open main menu
See also: dirne




From Middle High German dierne (girl; servant), from Old High German diorna, thiorna (girl; servant), from Proto-Germanic *þewernǭ, *þewernō (maid, servant girl), from Proto-Indo-European *tekw- (to run, flow). The sense “prostitute” developed from the use for a “girl from the lower classes”. It is first attested in the 15th century.


  • IPA(key): /ˈdɪrnə/, [ˈdɪʁnə], [ˈdɪɐ̯nə], [ˈdɪrnə]
  • (file)


Dirne f (genitive Dirne, plural Dirnen)

  1. (derogatory, dated, also biblical) whore (prostitute or sexually unreserved woman)
    Synonyms: Buhldirne, Hure, Lustdirne, Nutte
    Hyponyms: Edeldirne, Straßendirne
  2. (archaic or dialectal) girl; lass

Usage notesEdit

  • The older sense “girl” is now chiefly restricted to dialectal cognate forms. Northern German Deern and Bavarian Dirndl are widely understood, though not commonly used outside of their traditional areas.


Related termsEdit

Further readingEdit

  • Dirne in Duden online
  • Dirne” in Digitales Wörterbuch der deutschen Sprache