From Proto-Indo-European *h₃órbʰos (orphan), from *h₃erbʰ- (to change ownership). Cognate with Ancient Greek ὀρφανός (orphanós, orphaned), Sanskrit अर्भ (árbha, small), Old Armenian որբ (orb, orphan). Compare Late Latin orphanus.



orbus (feminine orba, neuter orbum); first/second-declension adjective

  1. (with genitive, ablative or ab) bereaved, bereft, deprived (of) by death
    1. orphaned, parentless; fatherless
    2. childless
    3. widowed
  2. (in general, with genitive, ablative or ab) deprived, destitute (of)


First/second-declension adjective.

Number Singular Plural
Case / Gender Masculine Feminine Neuter Masculine Feminine Neuter
Nominative orbus orba orbum orbī orbae orba
Genitive orbī orbae orbī orbōrum orbārum orbōrum
Dative orbō orbō orbīs
Accusative orbum orbam orbum orbōs orbās orba
Ablative orbō orbā orbō orbīs
Vocative orbe orba orbum orbī orbae orba

Derived termsEdit

Related termsEdit


In all descendants the term acquired the meaning “blind”, from a construction such as orbus ab oculīs (deprived of eyes).

  • ōrbus
    • Proto-Albanian: *u̯œrbana-
  • Aromanian: orbu
  • Catalan: orb
  • Dalmatian: vuarb, uarb
  • Friulian: vuarb
  • Istriot: uorbo
  • Italian: orbo


  • orbus in Charlton T. Lewis and Charles Short (1879) A Latin Dictionary, Oxford: Clarendon Press
  • orbus in Charlton T. Lewis (1891) An Elementary Latin Dictionary, New York: Harper & Brothers
  • orbus in Charles du Fresne du Cange’s Glossarium Mediæ et Infimæ Latinitatis (augmented edition with additions by D. P. Carpenterius, Adelungius and others, edited by Léopold Favre, 1883–1887)
  • orbus in Gaffiot, Félix (1934) Dictionnaire illustré Latin-Français, Hachette
  • orbus in William Smith et al., editor (1890) A Dictionary of Greek and Roman Antiquities, London: William Wayte. G. E. Marindin