Since its first usage in English around 1100, the word has meant a woman who prostitutes herself. It has always been a term of disapprobation, but not always censored. There is a line in Shakespeare's "King Lear" (1609 approx.), "Leave thy drink and thy whore." It shows that term allied to low behavior (drinking) but the word is used openly. In 1629 or so John Ford wrote a play with the word in the title: "'Tis a Pity She's a Whore."
The word was not censored in Renaissance times. It may have been somewhat more restricted in the Victorian era, but it is not often suppressed on line. It probably is bleeped out if monitors of a website fear that it may be heard by people likely to be offended by references to prostitution. However, it is more permitted than many other terms. Yahoo permitted its use in your question, did it not? I don't find it as verboten as you suggest.