Updated: FEBRUARY 3, 2020
A virgin is a person who has never had sexual intercourse. This definition can be limited to penis-in-vagina sex, but may also be expanded to include oral sex, anal sex, and mutual masturbation depending on the culture and religious background of the person.
More About Virgin
Virginity is a very powerful concept in many cultures around the world, including religiously conservative people of North America. In those cultures, virginity is usually expected of women, but not men. It is linked to concepts of honor, purity, and worth. Basically, a female virgin is seen as pure and desirable for marriage, whereas a woman who has sex outside of marriage is seen as dirty and unworthy. Female virginity is often an expected social demand in more religious communities, and commitments such as "purity pledges" and "purity balls" often happen.
In these communities, virginity is expected of women until marriage, at which point they are only allowed to have intercourse with their husbands. Historically, this was used to control and ensure the lineage of children for inheritance purposes, but has no real legal significance today.
While female virginity is seen as a virtuous, male virginity is often mocked and ridiculed in North American culture. Male virgins are seen as un-masculine, socially inept and undesirable, and must remedy this "lack of worth" by having sex as soon as possible.
Religious beliefs and culture greatly influence one's view of virginity. More liberal cultures tend to not expect female virginity before marriage.