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The text comes from my abridgment, Samuel Johnson's Dictionary: Selections from the 1755 Work That Defined the English Language (Delray Beach: Levenger, 2002; New York: Walker & Co., 2003). The policies, therefore, are the same as those spelled out in the editor's introduction to that volume. All the selections are from the first edition of Johnson's Dictionary, 1755, and entries are presented without any internal abridgment.
abecedárian n.s. [from the names of a, b, c, the three first letters of the alphabet.] He that teaches or learns the alphabet, or first rudiments of literature. This word is used by Wood in his Athenæ Oxonienses, where mentioning Farnaby the critic, he relates, that, in some part of his life, he was reduced to follow the trade of an abecedarian by his misfortunes.
áblepsy n.s. [αβλεψια, Gr.] Want of sight, natural blindness; also unadvisedness. Dict.
abracadábra A superstitious charm against agues.
acéphalous adj. [ακεφαλος, Gr.] Without a head. Dict.
ágalaxy n.s. [from α and γαλα, Gr.] Want of milk. Dict.
air n.s. [air, Fr. aër, Lat.]
1. The element encompassing the terraqueous globe.
If I were to tell what I mean by the word air, I may say, it is that fine matter which we breathe in and breathe out continually; or it is that thin fluid body, in which the birds fly, a little above the earth; or it is that invisible matter, which fills all places near the earth, or which immediately encompasses the globe of earth and water. Watts's Logick.
2. The state of the air; or the air considered with regard to health.
There be many good and healthful airs, that do appear by habitation and other proofs, that differ not in smell from other airs. Bacon's Natural History, No 904.
3. Air in motion; a small gentle wind.
Fresh gales, and gentle airs,
Whisper'd it to the woods, and from their wings
Flung rose, flung odours from the spicy shrub
Disporting! Milton's Paradise Lost, b. viii. l. 515.
But safe repose, without an air of breath,
Dwells here, and a dumb quiet next to death. Dryden.
Let vernal airs through trembling osiers play,
And Albion's cliffs resound the rural lay. Pope's Pastorals.
All the stor'd vengeancies of heaven fall
On her ingrateful top! strike her young bones,
You taking airs, with lameness. Shakesp. King Lear.
5. Any thing light or uncertain; that is as light as air.
O momentary grace of mortal men,
Which we more hunt for than the grace of God!
Who builds his hope in air of your fair looks,
Lives like a drunken sailor on a mast,
Ready, with ev'ry nod, to tumble down
Into the fatal bowels of the deep. Shakesp. Rich. III.
6. The open weather; air unconfined.
The garden was inclos'd within the square,
Where young Emilia took the morning air. Dryd. Fables.
7. Vent; utterance; emission into the air.
I would have ask'd you, if I durst for shame,
If still you lov'd? you gave it air before me.
But ah! why were we not both of a sex?
For then we might have lov'd without a crime. Dryd. D. Seb.
8. Publication; exposure to the publick view and knowledge.
I am sorry to find it has taken air, that I have some hand in these papers. Pope's Letters.
9. Intelligence; information.
It grew also from the airs, which the princes and states abroad received from their ambassadors and agents here; which were attending the court in great number. Bacon's Henry VII.
10. Poetry; a song.
And the repeated air
Of sad Electra's poet, had the pow'r
To save th' Athenian walls from ruin bare. Parad. Regain.
11. Musick, whether light or serious.
This musick crept by me upon the waters,
Allaying both their fury and my passion,
With its sweet air. Shakespeare's Tempest.
Call in some musick; I have heard, soft airs
Can charm our senses, and expel our cares. Denh. Sophy.
The same airs, which some entertain with most delightful transports, to others are importune. Glanville's Scepsis Scient.
Since we have such a treasury of words, so proper for the airs of musick, I wonder that persons should give so little attention. Addison, Spectator, No 406.
Born on the swelling notes, our souls aspire,
While solemn airs improve the sacred fire;
And angels lean from heav'n to hear! Pope's St. Cæcilia.
—When the soul is sunk with cares,
Exalts her in enliv'ning airs. Pope's Cæcilia.
12. The mien, or manner, of the person.
Her graceful innocence, her ev'ry air,
Of gesture, or least action, over-aw'd
His malice. Milton's Paradise Lost, b. ix. l. 459.
For the air of youth
Hopeful and chearful, in thy blood shall reign
A melancholy damp of cold and dry,
To weigh thy spirits down; and last consume
The balm of life. Milt. Par. Lost, b. xi. l. 452.
But, having the life before us, besides the experience of all they knew, it is no wonder to hit some airs and features, which they have missed. Dryden on Dramatick Poetry.
There is something wonderfully divine in the airs of this picture. Addison on Italy.
Yet should the Graces all thy figures place,
And breathe an air divine on ev'ry face. Pope.
13. An affected or laboured manner or gesture; as, a lofty air, a gay air.
Whom Ancus follows, with a fawning air;
But vain within, and proudly popular. Dryd. Æn. vi.
There are of these sort of beauties, which last but for a moment; as, the different airs of an assembly, upon the sight of an unexpected and uncommon object, some particularity of a violent passion, some graceful action, a smile, a glance of an eye, a disdainful look, a look of gravity, and a thousand other such like things. Dryden's Dufresnoy.
Their whole lives were employed in intrigues of state, and they naturally give themselves airs of kings and princes, of which the ministers of other nations are only the representatives. Addison's Remarks on Italy.
To curl their waving hairs,
Assist their blushes, and inspire their airs. Pope.
He assumes and affects an entire set of very different airs; he conceives himself a being of a superiour nature. Swift.
As it was communicated with the air of a secret, it soon found its way into the world. Pope's Ded. to Rape of the Lock.
15. [In horsemanship.] Airs denote the artificial or practised motions of a managed horse. Chambers.
áirling n.s. [from air, for gayety.] A young, light, thoughtless, gay person.
Some more there be, slight airlings, will be won
With dogs, and horses, and perhaps a whore. B. John. Catil.
álcohol n.s. An Arabick term used by chymists for a high rectified dephlegmated spirit of wine, or for any thing reduced into an impalpable powder. Quincy.
If the same salt shall be reduced into alcohol, as the chymists speak, or an impalpable powder, the particles and intercepted spaces will be extremely lessened. Boyle.
Sal volatile oleosum will coagulate the serum on account of the alcahol, or rectified spirit which it contains. Arbuthnot.
Álcoran n.s. [al and koran, Arab.] The book of the Mahometan precepts, and credenda.
If this would satisfy the conscience, we might not only take the present covenant, but subscribe to the council of Trent; yea, and to the Turkish alcoran; and swear to maintain and defend either of them. Sanderson against the Covenant.
álgebra n.s. [an Arabick word of uncertain etymology; derived, by some, from Geber the philosopher; by some, from gefr, parchment; by others, from algehista, a bone-setter; by Menage, from algiatarat, the restitution of things broken.] This is a peculiar kind of arithmetick, which takes the quantity sought, whether it be a number or a line, or any other quantity, as if it were granted, and, by means of one or more quantities given, proceeds by consequence, till the quantity at first only supposed to be known, or at least some power thereof, is found to be equal to some quantity or quantities which are known, and consequently itself is known. The origin of this art is very obscure. It was in use, however, among the Arabs, long before it came into this part of the world; and they are supposed to have borrowed it from the Persians, and the Persians from the Indians. The first Greek author of algebra was Diophantus, who, about the year 800, wrote thirteen books. In 1494, Lucas Pacciolus, or Lucas de Burgos, a cordelier, printed a treatise of algebra, in Italian, at Venice. He says, that algebra came originally from the Arabs, and never mentions Diophantus; which makes it probable, that that authour was not yet known in Europe; whose method was very different from that of the Arabs, observed by Pacciolus and his first European followers. His algebra goes no farther than simple and quadratick equations; and only some of the others advanced to the solution of cubick equations. After several improvements by Vieta, Oughtred, Harriot, Descartes, Sir Isaac Newton brought this art to the height at which it still continues. Trevoux. Chambers.
It would surely require no very profound skill in algebra, to reduce the difference of ninepence in thirty shillings. Swift.
alligátor n.s. The crocodile. This name is chiefly used for the crocodile of America, between which, and that of Africa, naturalists have laid down this difference, that one moves the upper, and the other the lower jaw; but this is now known to be chimerical, the lower jaw being equally moved by both. See crocodile.
In his needy shop a tortoise hung,
An alligator stuff'd, and other skins
Of ill-shap'd fishes. Shakesp. Romeo and Juliet.
Aloft in rows large poppy-heads were strung,
And here a scaly alligator hung. Garth's Dispensary.
A.M. Stands for artium magister, or master of arts; the second degree of our universities, which, in some foreign countries, is called doctor of philosophy.
amygdaline adj. [amygdala, Lat.] Relating to almonds; resembling almonds.
anatíferous adj. [from anas and fero, Lat.] Producing ducks.
If there be anatiferous trees, whose corruption breaks forth into barnacles; yet, if they corrupt, they degenerate into maggots, which produce not them again. Brown's Vulgar Errours.
anoréxy n.s. [ανορηξια.] Inappetency, or loathing of food. Quincy.
anthropólogy n.s. [from ανθρωπος, man, and λεγω, to discourse.] The doctrine of anatomy; the doctrine of the form and structure of the body of man.
anthropóphagi n.s. It has no singular. [ανθρωπος, man, and φαγω, to eat.] Man-eaters; cannibals; those that live upon human flesh.
The cannibals that each other eat,
The anthropophagi, and men whose heads
Do grow beneath their shoulders. Shakesp. Othello.
antípodes n.s. It has no singular. [from αντι, against, and ποδες, feet.] Those people who, living on the other side of the globe, have their feet directly opposite to ours.
We should hold day with the antipodes,
If you would walk in absence of the sun. Shakespeare's Merchant of Venice.
So shines the sun, tho' hence remov'd, as clear
When his beams warm th' antipodes, as here. Waller.
arse n.s. [earse, Sax.] The buttocks, or hind part of an animal.
art n.s. [arte, Fr. ars, Lat.]
1. The power of doing something not taught by nature and instinct; as, to walk is natural, to dance is an art.
Art is properly an habitual knowledge of certain rules and maxims, by which a man is governed and directed in his actions. South.
Blest with each grace of nature and of art. Pope.
Ev'n copious Dryden wanted, or forgot,
The last and greatest art, the art to blot. Pope.
2. A science; as, the liberal arts.
Arts that respect the mind were ever reputed nobler than those that serve the body. Ben. Johnson's Discovery.
3. A trade.
This observation is afforded us by the art of making sugar. Boyle.
4. Artfulness; skill; dexterity.
The art of our necessities is strange,
That can make vile things precious. Shak. King Lear.
I have as much of this in art as you;
But yet my nature could not bear it so. Shakesp. J. Cæsar.
astrólogy n.s. [astrologia, Lat.] The practice of foretelling things by the the knowledge of the stars; an art now generally exploded, as without reason.
I know it hath been the opinion of the learned, who think of the art of astrology, that the stars do not force the actions or wills of men. Swift.
báckfriend n.s. [from back and friend.] A friend backwards; that is, an enemy in secret.
Set the restless importunities of talebearers and backfriends against fair words and professions. L'Estrange.
Far is our church from encroaching upon the civil power; as some who are backfriends to both, would maliciously insinuate. South.
ballétte n.s. [ballette, Fr.] A dance in which some history is represented.
to bambóozle v.a. [a cant word not used in pure or in grave writings.] To deceive; to impose upon; to confound.
After Nick had bamboozled about the money, John called for counters. Arbuthnot's John Bull.
bawd n.s. [baude, old Fr.] A procurer, or procuress; one that introduces men and women to each other, for the promotion of debauchery.
If your worship will take order for the drabs and the knaves, you need not to fear the bawds. Shakesp. Measure for Meas.
This bawd, this broker, this all changing word,
Hath drawn him from his own determin'd aid. Sh. K. John.
Our author calls colouring lena sororis, the bawd of her sister design; she dresses her up, she paints her, she procures for the design, and makes lovers for her. Dryden's Dufresnoy.
bédlam n.s. [corrupted from Bethlehem, the name of a religious house in London, converted afterwards into an hospital for the mad and lunatick.]
1. A madhouse; a place appointed for the cure of lunacy.
2. A madman; a lunatick.
Let's follow the old earl, and get the bedlam
To lead him where he would; his roguish madness
Allows itself to any thing. Shakesp. King Lear.
bélly-timber n.s. [from belly and timber.] Food; materials to support the belly.
Where belly-timber, above ground
Or under, was not to be found. Hudibras, cant. i.
The strength of every other member
Is founded on your belly-timber. Prior.
Bíble n.s. [from βιβλιον, a book; called, by way of excellence, The Book.] The sacred volume in which are contained the revelations of God.
If we pass from the apostolic to the next ages of the church, the primitive christians looked on their bibles as their most important treasure. Government of the Tongue, No 3.
We must take heed how we accustom ourselves to a slight and irreverent use of the name of God, and of the phrases and expressions of the holy bible, which ought not to be applied upon every slight occasion. Tillotson, sermon i.
In questions of natural religion, we should confirm and improve, or connect our reasonings, by the divine assistance of the bible. Watts's Logick.
bínary arithmetick A method of computation proposed by Mr. Leibnitz, in which, in lieu of the ten figures in the common arithmetick, and the progression from ten to ten, he has only two figures, and uses the simple progression from two to two. This method appears to be the same with that used by the Chinese four thousand years ago. Chambers.
bitch n.s. [bitge, Saxon.]
1. The female of the canine kind; as the wolf, the dog, the fox, the otter.
And at his feet a bitch wolf suck did yield
To two young babes. Spens. Vision of Bellay.
I have been credibly informed, that a bitch will nurse, play with, and be fond of young foxes, as much as, and in place of her puppies. Locke.
2. A name of reproach for a woman.
John had not run a madding so long, had it not been for an extravagant bitch of a wife. Arbuthnot's History of J. Bull.
blóckhead n.s. [from block and head.] A stupid fellow; a dolt; a man without parts.
Your wit will not so soon out as another man's will; it is strongly wedged up in a blockhead. Shakesp. Coriolanus.
We idly sit like stupid blockheads,
Our hands committed to our pockets. Hudibras, p. iii. c. ii.
A blockhead rubs his thoughtless skull,
And thanks his stars he was not born a fool. Pope.
blowze n.s. A ruddy fat-faced wench.
búbby n.s. A woman's breast.
Foh! say they, to see a handsome, brisk, genteel, young fellow, so much governed by a doating old woman; why don't you go and suck the bubby? Arbuthnot's John Bull.
cálif, cáliph n.s. [khalifa, Arab. an heir or successor.] A title assumed by the successors of Mahomet among the Saracens, who were vested with absolute power in affairs, both religious and civil.
camélopard n.s. [from camelus and pardus, Lat.] An Abyssinian animal, taller than an elephant, but not so thick. He is so named, because he has a neck and head like a camel; he is spotted like a pard, but his spots are white upon a red ground. The Italians call him giaraffa. Trevoux.
cant n.s. [probably from cantus, Lat. implying the odd tone of voice used by vagrants; but imagined by some to be corrupted from quaint.]
1. A corrupt dialect used by beggars and vagabonds.
2. A particular form of speaking peculiar to some certain class or body of men.
I write not always in the proper terms of navigation, land service, or in the cant of any profession. Dryden.
If we would trace out the original of that flagrant and avowed impiety, which has prevailed among us for some years, we should find, that it owes its rise to that cant and hypocrisy, which had taken possession of the people's minds in the times of the great rebellion. Addison, Freeholder, No 37.
Astrologers, with an old paltry cant, and a few pot-hooks for planets, to amuse the vulgar, have too long been suffered to abuse the world. Swift's Predictions for the Year 1701.
A few general rules, with a certain cant of words, has sometimes set up an illiterate heavy writer, for a most judicious and formidable critick. Addison, Spectator, No 291.
3. A whining pretension to goodness, in formal and affected terms.
Of promise prodigal, while pow'r you want,
And preaching in the self-denying cant. Dryden's Aurengz.
4. Barbarous jargon.
The affectation of some late authours, to introduce and multiply cant words, is the most ruinous corruption in any language. Swift.
Numbers of these tenants, or their descendants, are now offering to sell their leases by cant, even those which were for lives. Swift.
cathéter n.s. [καθετηρ.] A hollow and somewhat crooked instrument, to thrust into the bladder, to assist in bringing away the urine, when the passage is stopped by a stone or gravel.
A large clyster, suddenly injected, hath frequently forced the urine out of the bladder; but if it fail, a catheter must help you. Wiseman's Surgery.
cátsup n.s. A kind of pickle, made from mushrooms.
And, for our home-bred British cheer,
Botargo, catsup, and cavier. Swift.
céphalalgy n.s. [κεφαλαλγια.] The headach. Dict.
chirúrgeon n.s. [χειρουργος, from χειρ, the hand, and εργον, work.] One that cures ailments, not by internal medicines, but outward applications. It is now generally pronounced, and by many written, surgeon.
When a man's wounds cease to smart, only because he has lost his feeling, they are nevertheless mortal, for his not seeing his need of a chirurgeon. South's Sermons.
chýmist n.s. [See chymistry.] A professor of chymistry; a philosopher by fire.
The starving chymist, in his golden views
Supremely blest. Pope's Essay on Man, Epist. ii.
chýmistry n.s. [derived by some from χυμος, juice, or χυω, to melt; by others from an oriental word, kema, black. According to the etymology, it is written with y or e.] An art whereby sensible bodies contained in vessels, or capable of being contained therein, are so changed, by means of certain instruments, and principally fire, that their several powers and virtues are thereby discovered, with a view to philosophy, or medicine. Boerhaave.
Operations of chymistry fall short of vital force: no chymist can make milk or blood or grass. Arbuthnot on Aliment.
cóffee n.s. [It is originally Arabick, pronounced caheu by the Turks, and cahuah by the Arabs.] The tree is a species of Arabick jessamine, which see. It is found to succeed as well in the Caribbee islands as in their native place of growth: but whether the coffee produced in the West Indies will prove as good as that from Mocha in Arabia Felix, time will discover. The berry brought from the Levant is most esteemed; and the berry, when ripe, is found as hard as horn. Miller.
Coffee also denotes a drink prepared from the berries, very familiar in Europe for these eighty years, and among the turks for one hundred and fifty. Some refer the invention of coffee to the Persians; from whom it was learned, in the fifteenth century, by a mufti of Aden, a city near the mouth of the Red Sea, where it soon came in vogue, and passed from thence to Mecca, and from Arabia Felix to Cairo. From Egypt the use of coffee advanced to Syria and Constantinople. Thevenot, the traveller, was the first who brought it into France; and a Greek servant, called Pasqua, brought into England by Mr. Daniel Edwards, a Turky merchant, in 1652, to make his coffee, first set up the profession of coffeeman, and introduced the drink among us; though some say Dr. Harvey had used it before. Chambers.
They have in Turky a drink called coffee, made of a berry of the same name, as black as soot, and of a strong scent, but not aromatical; which they take, beaten into powder, in water, as hot as they can drink it. This drink comforteth the brain and heart, and helpeth digestion. Bacon.
To part her time 'twixt reading and bohea,
Or o'er cold coffee trifle with the spoon. Pope.
cóffeehouse n.s. [coffee and house.] A house of entertainment where coffee is sold, and the guests are supplied with news papers.
At ten, from coffeehouse or play,
Returning, finishes the day. Prior.
It is a point they do not concern themselves about, farther than perhaps as a subject in a coffeehouse. Swift.
cough n.s. [kuch, Dutch.] A convulsion of the lungs, vellicated by some sharp serosity. It is pronounced coff.
In consumptions of the lungs, when nature cannot expel the cough, men fall into fluxes of the belly, and then they die. Bacon's Natural History, No. 63.
For his dear sake long restless nights you bore,
While rattling coughs his heaving vessels tore. Smith.
crócodile n.s. [from κροκος, saffron, and δειλων, fearing.] An amphibious voracious animal, in shape resembling a lizard, and found in Egypt and the Indies. It is covered with very hard scales, which cannot, without great difficulty, be pierced; except under the belly, where the skin is tender. It has a wide throat, with several rows of teeth, sharp and separated, which enter one another. Though its four legs are very short, it runs with great swiftness; but does not easily turn itself. It is long lived, and is said to grow continually to its death, but this is not probable. Some are fifteen or eighteen cubits long. Its sight is very piercing upon the ground, but in the water it sees but dimly; and it is said to spend the four winter months under water. When its bowels are taken out, or it is wounded, it smells very agreeably. Crocodiles lay their eggs, resembling goose-eggs, sometimes amounting to sixty, on the sand near the waterside, covering them with the sand, that the heat of the sun may contribute to hatch them. The Ichneumon, or Indian rat, which is as large as a tame cat, is said to break the crocodile's eggs whenever it finds them; and also, that it gets into the very belly of this creature, while it is asleep with its throat open, gnaws its entrails, and kills it. Calmet.
Beguiles him; as the mournful crocodile,
With sorrow, snares relenting passengers. Shakesp. Hen. VI.
Crocodiles were thought to be peculiar unto the Nile. Brown.
Cæsar will weep, the crocodile will weep. Dryden.
Enticing crocodiles, whose tears are death;
Syrens, that murder with enchanting breath. Granville.
Crocodile is also a little animal, otherwise called stinx, very much like the lizard, or small crocodile. It lives by land and water; has four short small legs, a very sharp muzzle, and a short small tail. It is pretty enough to look at, being covered all over with little scales of the colour of silver, intermixt with brown, and of a gold colour upon the back. It always remains little, and is found in Egypt near the Red Sea, in Lybia, and in the Indies. Trevoux.
cróssrow n.s. [cross and row.] Alphabet; so named because a cross is placed at the beginning, to shew that the end of learning is piety.
He hearkens after prophecies and dreams,
And from the crossrow plucks the letter G;
And says a wizard told him, that by G
His issue disinherited should be. Shakespeare's Richard III.
cynánthropy n.s. [κυων κυνος, and ανθρωπος.] A species of madness in which men have the qualities of dogs.
dad, dáddy n.s. [The child's way of expressing father. It is remarkable, that, in all parts of the world, the word for father, as first taught to children, is compounded of a and t, or the kindred letter d differently placed; as tad, Welsh; αττα, Greek; atta, Gothick; tata, Latin. Mammas atque tatas habet Afra, Mart.] Father.
I was never so bethumpt with words,
Since first I call'd my brother's father dad. Shakes. K. John.
His loving mother left him to my care;
Fine child, as like his dad as he could stare! Gay.
decacúminated adj. [decacuminatus, Latin.] Having the top cut off. Dict.
Decémber n.s. [december, Latin.] The last month of the year; but named december, or the tenth month, when the year began in March.
Men are April when they woo, and December when they wed. Shakespeare's As you like it.
What should we speak of,
When we are old as you? When we shall hear
The rain and wind beat dark December. Shakesp. Cymbeline.
deflúxion n.s. [defluxio, Latin.] A defluxion; a flowing down of humours.
We see that taking cold moveth looseness, by contraction of the skin and outward parts; and so doth cold likewise cause rheums and defluxions from the head. Bacon's Natural History.
díctionary n.s. [dictionarium, Latin.] A book containing the words of any language in alphabetical order, with explanations of their meaning; a lexicon; a vocabulary; a word-book.
Some have delivered the polity of spirits, and left an account that they stand in awe of charms, spells, and conjurations; that they are afraid of letters and characters, notes and dashes, which, set together, do signify nothing; and not only in the dictionary of man, but in the subtler vocabulary of satan. Brown's Vulgar Errours, b. i. c. 10.
Is it such a horrible fault to translate simulacra images? I see what a good thing it is to have a good catholick dictionary. Still.
An army, or a parliament, is a collection of men; a dictionary, or nomenclature, is a collection of words. Watts.
dóxy n.s. A whore; a loose wench.
When daffadils begin to pure,
With heigh! the doxy over the dale. Shakes. Winter's Tale.
ejáculation n.s. [from ejaculate.]
1. A short prayer darted out occasionally, without solemn retirement.
In your dressing let there be ejaculations fitted to the several actions of dressing; as at washing your hands, pray God to cleanse your soul from sin. Taylor's Guide to Devotion.
2. The act of darting or throwing out.
There seemeth to be acknowledged, in the act of envy, an ejaculation or irradiation of the eye. Bacon's Essays.
There is to be observed, in those dissolutions which will not easily incorporate, what the effects are; as the ebullition, the precipitation to the bottom, the ejaculation towards the top, the suspension in the midst, and the like. Bacon.
electrícity n.s. [from electrick. See electre.] A property in some bodies, whereby, when rubbed so as to grow warm, they draw little bits of paper, or such like substances, to them. Quincy.
Such was the account given a few years ago of electricity; but the industry of the present age, first excited by the experiments of Gray, has discovered in electricity a multitude of philosophical wonders. Bodies electrified by a sphere of glass, turned nimbly round, not only emit flame, but may be fitted with such a quantity of the electrical vapour, as, if discharged at once upon a human body, would endanger life. The force of this vapour has hitherto appeared instantaneous, persons at both ends of a long chain seeming to be struck at once. The philosophers are now endeavouring to intercept the strokes of lightning.
enthúsiasm n.s. [ενθουσιασμος.]
1. A vain belief of private revelation; a vain confidence of divine favour or communication.
Enthusiasm is founded neither on reason nor divine revelation, but rises from the conceits of a warmed or overweening brain. Locke.
2. Heat of imagination; violence of passion; confidence of opinion.
3. Elevation of fancy; exaltation of ideas.
Imaging is, in itself, the very height and life of poetry, which, by a kind of enthusiasm, or extraordinary emotion of soul, makes it seem to us that we behold those things which the poet paints. Dryden's Juv. Preface.
éssay n.s. [from the verb. The accent is used on either syllable.]
1. Attempt; endeavour.
Fruitless our hopes, though pious our essays;
Your's to preserve a friend, and mine to praise. Smith.
2. A loose sally of the mind; an irregular indigested piece; not a regular and orderly composition.
My essays, of all my other works, have been most current. Bac.
Yet modestly he does his work survey,
And calls his finish'd poem an essay. Poem to Roscommon.
3. A trial; an experiment.
He wrote this but as an essay, or taste of my virtue. Shak.
Repetitions wear us into a liking of what possibly, in the first essay, displeased us. Locke.
4. First taste of any thing; first experiment.
Translating the first of Homer's Iliads, I intended as an essay to the whole work. Dryden's Fables, Preface.
etch n.s. A country word, of which I know not the meaning.
When they sow their etch crops, they sprinkle a pound or two of clover on an acre. Mortimer's Husbandry.
Where you find dunging of land makes it rank, lay dung upon the etch, and sow it with barley. Mortimer's Husbandry.
excíse n.s. [accijs, Dutch; excisum, Latin.] A hateful tax levied upon commodities, and adjudged not by the common judges of property, but wretches hired by those to whom excise is paid.
The people should pay a ratable tax for their sheep, and an excise for every thing which they should eat. Hayward.
Ambitious now to take excise
Of a more fragrant paradise. Cleaveland.
With hundred rows of teeth, the shark exceeds,
And on all trades like Cassawar she feeds. Marvel.
Can hire large houses, and oppress the poor,
By farm'd excise. Dryden's Juvenal, Sat. 3.
fabáceous adj. [fabaceus, Latin] Having the nature of a bean. Dict.
fart n.s. [fert, Saxon.] Wind from behind.
Love is the fart
Of every heart;
It pains a man when 'tis kept close;
And others doth offend, when 'tis let loose. Suckling.
fémale n.s. [femelle, French; femella, Latin.] A she; one of the sex which brings young.
God created man in his own image, male and female created he them. Gen. i. 27.
Man, more divine,
Lord of the wide world, and wide wat'ry seas,
Indu'd with intellectual sense and soul,
Are masters to their females, and their lords. Shakespeare.
1. A play in which they catch raisins out of burning brandy, and, extinguishing them by closing the mouth, eat them.
2. The thing eaten at flapdragon.
He plays at quoits well, and eats conger and fennel, and drinks candles ends for flapdragons, and rides the wild mare with the boys. Shakespeare's Henry IV. p. ii.
flíttermouse n.s. The bat.
fópdoodle n.s. [fop and doodle.] A fool; an insignificant wretch.
Where sturdy butchers broke your noodle,
And handled you like a fopdoodle. Hudibras, p. ii.
to fórnicate v.a. [from fornix, Latin.] To commit lewdness.
It is a new way to fornicate at a distance. Brown's Vul. Err.
funk n.s. A stink. A low word.
galerículate adj. [from galerus, Latin.] Covered as with a hat.
gámbler n.s. [A cant word, I suppose, for game or gamester.] A knave whose practice it is to invite the unwary to game and cheat them.
garlickeáter n.s. [garlick and eat.] A mean fellow.
You've made good work,
You and your apron men, that stood so much
Upon the voice of occupation, and
The breath of garlickeaters. Shakespeare's Coriolanus.
genéva n.s. [A corruption of genevre, French, a juniperberry.] We used to keep a distilled spirituous water of juniper in the shops; but the making of it became the business of the distiller, who sold it under the name of geneva. At present only a better kind is distilled from the juniper-berry: what is commonly sold is made with no better an ingredient than oil of turpentine, put into the still, with a little common salt, and the coarsest spirit they have, which is drawn off much below proof strength, and is consequently a liquor that one would wonder any people could accustom themselves to drink with pleasure. Hill's Mat. Medica.
génius n.s. [Latin; genie, French.]
1. The protecting or ruling power of men, places, or things.
There is none but he
Whose being I do fear: and, under him,
My genius is rebuk'd; as it is said
Antony's was by Cæsar. Shakespeare's Macbeth.
The genius and the mortal instruments
Are then in council; and the state of man,
Like to a little kingdom, suffers then. Shakes. Jul. Cæsar.
And as I awake, sweet musick breathe,
Sent by some spirit to mortals good,
Or th' unseen genius of the wood. Milton.
And the tame demon that should guard my throne,
Shrinks at a genius greater than his own. Dryden.
To your glad genius sacrifice this day;
Let common meats respectfully give way. Dryden
2. A man endowed with superiour faculties.
There is no little writer of Pindarick who is not mentioned as a prodigious genius. Addison.
3. Mental power or faculties.
The state and order does proclaim
The genius of that royal dame. Waller.
4. Disposition of nature by which any one is qualified for some peculiar employment.
A happy genius is the gist of nature. Dryden's Dufresnoy.
Your majesty's sagacity, and happy genius for natural history, is a better preparation for enquiries of this kind than all the dead learning of the schools. Burnet's Theory, Preface.
One science only will one genius fit;
So vast is art, so narrow human wit. Pope on Criticism.
The Romans, though they had no great genius for trade, yet were not entirely neglectful of it. Arbuthnot on Coins.
5. Nature; disposition.
Studious to please the genius of the times,
With periods, points and tropes he slurs his crimes. Dryd.
Another genius and disposition improper for philosophical contemplations is not so much from the narrowness of their spirit and understanding, as because they will not take time to extend them. Burnet's Theory of the Earth, Preface.
He tames the genius of the stubborn plain. Pope.
gýnecocracy n.s. [γυναικοκρατια; gynecocratie, French.] Petticoat government; female power.
half-wit n.s. [half and wit.] A blockhead; a foolish fellow.
Half-wits are fleas, so little and so light,
We scarce could know they live, but that they bite. Dryden.
háppiness n.s. [from happy.]
1. Felicity; state in which the desires are satisfied.
Happiness is that estate whereby we attain, so far as possibly may be attained, the full possession of that which simply for itself is to be desired, and containeth in it after an eminent sort the contentation of our desires, the highest degree of all our perfection. Hooker, b. i.
Oh! happiness of sweet retir'd content,
To be at once secure and innocent. Denham.
The various and contrary choices that men make in the world, argue that the same thing is not good to every man alike: this variety of pursuits shews; that every one does not place his happiness in the same thing. Locke.
2. Good luck; good fortune.
3. Fortuitous elegance; unstudied grace.
Certain graces and happinesses, peculiar to every language, give life and energy to the words. Denham.
Some beauties yet no precepts can declare;
For there's a happiness as well as care. Pope on Criticism.
hátchet-face n.s. An ugly face; such, I suppose, as might be hewn out of a block by a hatchet.
An ape his own dear image will embrace;
An ugly beau adores a hatchet-face. Dryden.
heart n.s. [heort, Saxon; hertz, German.]
1. The muscle which by its contraction and dilation propels the blood through the course of circulation, and is therefore considered as the source of vital motion. It is supposed in popular language to be the seat sometimes of courage, sometimes of affection.
He with providence and courage so passed over all, that the mother took such spiteful grief at it, that her heart brake withal, and she died. Sidney.
Thou wouldst have left thy dearest heart blood there,
Rather than made that savage duke thine heir,
And disinherited thine only son. Shakes. Henry VI.
Snakes, in my heart blood warm'd, that sting my heart. Shakespeare's Richard II.
Our battle is more full of names than your's,
Our men more perfect in the use of arms,
Our armour all as strong, our cause the best;
Then reason wills our hearts should be as good. Shak. H. IV.
I thank you for my venison, master Shallow.
—Master Page, much good do it your good heart. Shakesp.
But since the brain doth lodge the pow'rs of sense,
How makes it in the heart those passions spring?
The mutual love, the kind intelligence
'Twixt heart and brain, this sympathy doth bring. Davies.
We all set our hearts at rest, since whatever comes from above is for the best. L'Estrange.
The only true zeal is that which is guided by a good light in the head, and that which consists of good and innocent affections in the heart. Spratt's Sermons.
Prest with heart corroding grief and years,
To the gay court a rural shed prefers. Pope's Odessy.
2. The chief part; the vital part.
Barley being steeped in water, and turned upon a dry floor, will sprout half an inch; and, if it be let alone, much more, until the heart be out. Bacon's Natural History.
3. The inner part of any thing.
Some Englishmen did with great danger pass by water into the heart of the country. Abbot's Description of the World.
The king's forces are employed in appeasing disorders more near the heart of the kingdom. Hayward.
Generally the inside or heart of trees is harder than the outward parts. Boyle.
Here in the heart of all the town I'll stay,
And timely succour, where it wants, convey. Dryden.
If the foundations be bad, provide good piles made of heart of oak, such as will reach ground. Moxon's Mech. Exer.
4. Person; character. Used with respect to courage or kindness.
The king's a bawcock, and a heart of gold,
A lad of life, an imp of fame. Shakespeare's Henry V.
Hey, my hearts; cheerly, my hearts. Shakesp. Tempest.
What says my heart of elder? Ha! is he dead, bully-stale? Is he dead? Shakes. Merry Wives of Windsor.
5. Courage; spirit.
If it please you to make his fortune known, as I have done Erona's, I will after take heart again to go on with his falsehood. Sidney, b. ii.
There did other like unhappy accidents happen out of England, which gave heart and good opportunity to them to regain their old possessions. Spenser on Ireland.
Wide was the wound; and a large lukewarm flood,
Red as the rose, thence gushed grievously,
That when the painim spy'd the streaming blood,
Gave him great heart and hope of victory. Fairy Queen.
Eve, recov'ring heart, reply'd. Milton.
Having left that city well provided, and in good heart, his majesty removed with his little army to Bewdley. Clarendon.
Finding that it did them no hurt, they took heart upon't, went up to't, and viewed it. L'Estrange's Fables.
The expelled nations take heart, and when they fly from one country invade another. Temple.
6. Seat of love.
Ah! what avails it me the flocks to keep,
Who lost my heart while I preserv'd my sheep? Pope.
7. Affection; inclination.
Joab perceived that the king's heart was towards Absalom. 2 Sa. xiv. 1.
Means how to feel, and learn each other's heart,
By th' abbot's skill of Westminster is found. Daniel.
Nor set thy heart,
Thus over-fond, on that which is not thine. Milton.
'Tis well to be tender; but to set the heart too much upon any thing, is what we cannot justify. L'Estrange.
A friend makes me a feast, and sets all before me; but I set my heart upon one dish alone, and if that happen to be thrown down, I scorn all the rest. Temple.
Then mixing pow'rful herbs with magick art,
She chang'd his form who could not change his heart. Dryd.
What did I not, her stubborn heart to gain?
But all my vows were answer'd with disdain. Dryden.
Whatsoever was attained to, concerning God and his working in nature, the same was delivered over by heart and tradition from wise men to a posterity equally zealous. Raleigh.
We call the committing of a thing to memory the getting it by heart; for it is the memory that must transmit it to the heart; and it is in vain to expect that the heart should keep its hold of any truth, when the memory has let it go. South.
Shall I in London act this idle part?
Composing songs for fools to get by heart. Pope.
9. Good-will; ardour of zeal. To take to heart any thing, is to be zealous or solicitous or ardent about it.
If he take not their causes to heart, how should there be but in them frozen coldness, when his affections seem benumbed, from whom theirs should take fire? Hooker.
If he would take the business to heart, and deal in it effectually, it would succeed well. Bacon's Henry VII.
The lady marchioness of Hertford engaged her husband to take this business to heart. Clarendon, b. viii.
Amongst those, who took it most to heart, sir John Stawel was the chief. Clarendon, b. viii.
Every prudent and honest man would join himself to that side which had the good of their country most at heart. Addis.
Learned men have been now a long time searching after the happy country from which our first parents were exiled: if they can find it, with all my heart. Woodward's Nat. History.
I would not be sorry to find the Presbyterians mistaken in this point, which they have most at heart. Swift.
What I have most at heart is, that some method should be thought on for ascertaining and fixing our language. Swift.
10. Passions; anxiety; concern.
Set your heart at rest;
The fairy land buys not the child of me. Shakespeare.
11. Secret thoughts; recesses of the mind.
Michal saw king David leaping and dancing before the Lord, and she despised him in her heart. 2 Sa. vi. 16.
The next generation will in tongue and heart, and every way else, become English; so as there will be no difference or distinction, but the Irish sea, betwixt us. Davies on Ireland.
Thou sawest the contradiction between my heart and hand. King Charles.
Would you have him open his heart to you, and ask your advice, you must begin to do so with him first. Locke.
Men, some to pleasure, some to business take;
But every woman is, at heart, a rake. Pope, Epistle ii.
12. Disposition of mind.
Doing all things with so pretty a grace, that it seemed ignorance could not make him do amiss, because he had a heart to do well. Sidney.
13. The heart is considered as the seat of tenderness: a hard heart therefore is cruelty.
I've seen thee stern, and thou hast oft beheld
Heart hardening spectacles. Shakesp. Coriolanus.
Such iron hearts we are, and such
The base barbarity of human kind. Rowe's Jane Shore.
14. To find in the heart. To be not wholly averse.
For my breaking the laws of friendship with you, I could find in my heart to ask you pardon for it, but that your now handling of me gives me reason to confirm my former dealing. Sidney.
15. Secret meaning; hidden intention.
I will on with my speech in your praise,
And then shew you the heart of my message. Shakespeare.
16. Conscience; sense of good or ill.
Every man's heart and conscience doth in good or evil, even secretly committed, and known to none but itself, either like or disallow itself. Hooker, b. i. s. 9.
17. Strength; power.
Try whether leaves of trees, swept together, with some chalk and dung mixed, to give them more heart, would not make a good compost. Bacon's Natural History.
He keeps a sabbath of alternate years,
That the spent earth may gather heart again,
And, better'd by cessation, bear the grain. Dryden's Georg.
Care must be taken not to plow ground out of heart, because if 'tis in heart, it may be improved by marl again. Mortimer.
18. Utmost degree.
This gay charm,
Whose eye beck'd forth my wars, and call'd thee home,
Whose bosom was my crownet, my chief end,
Like a right gipsy, hath, at fast and loose,
Beguil'd me to the very heart of loss. Shakespeare.
19. Life. For my heart seems sometimes to signify, if life was at stake; and sometimes for tenderness.
I bid the rascal knock upon your gate,
And could not get him for my heart to do it. Shakespeare.
I gave it to a youth,
A prating boy, that begg'd it as a fee:
I could not for my heart deny it him. Shakes. Mer. of Venice.
Profoundly skill'd in the black art,
As English Merlin for his heart. Hudibras, p i.
20. It is much used in composition for mind, or affection.
Hégira n.s. [Arabick.] A term in chronology, signifying the epocha, or account of time, used by the Arabians and Turks, who begin their computation from the day that Mahomet was forced to make his escape from the city of Mecca, which happened on Friday July 16, A.D. 622, under the reign of the emperor Heracleus. Harris.
helmínthick adj. [from ελμινθος.] Relating to worms. Dict.
hotcóckles n.s. [hautes coquilles, French.] A play in which one covers his eyes, and guesses who strikes him.
The chytindra is certainly not our hotcockles; for that was by pinching, not by striking. Arbuthn. and Pope's Mar. Scribl.
As at hotcockles once I laid me down,
And felt the weighty hand of many a clown,
Buxoma gave a gentle tap, and I
Quick rose, and read soft mischief in her eye. Gay's Past.
hússy n.s. [corrupted from housewife: taken in an ill sense.] A sorry or bad woman; a worthless wench. It is often used ludicrously in slight disapprobation.
Get you in, hussy, go: now will I personate this hopeful young jade. Southern's Innocent Adultery.
ídler n.s. [from idle.] A lazy person; a sluggard.
Many of these poor fishermen and idlers, that are commonly presented to his majesty's ships, are so ignorant in sea-service as that they know not the name of a rope. Raleigh.
Thou sluggish idler, dilatory slave. Irene.
jakes n.s. [Of uncertain etymology.] A house of office.
I will tread this unbolted villain into mortar, and daub the walls of jakes with him. Shakespeare's King Lear.
Their sordid avarice rakes
In excrements, and hires the very jakes. Dryden's Juvenal.
Some have fished the very jakes for papers left there by men of wit. Swift.
jiggumbob n.s. [A cant word.] A trinket; a knick-knack; a slight contrivance in machinery.
He rifled all his pokes and fobs
Of gimcracks, whims, and jiggumbobs. Hudibras, p. iii.
jógger n.s. [from jog.] One who moves heavily and dully.
They, with their fellow joggers of the plough. Dryden.
laced mutton An old word for a whore.
Ay, Sir, I, a lost mutton, gave your letter to her a lac'd mutton, and she gave me nothing for my labour. Shakes.
lánguage n.s. [language, French; lingua, Latin.]
1. Human speech.
We may define language, if we consider it more materially, to be letters, forming and producing words and sentences; but if we consider it according to the design thereof, then language is apt signs for communication of thoughts. Holder.
2. The tongue of one nation as distinct from others.
O! good my lord, no Latin;
I am not such a truant since my coming,
As not to know the language I have liv'd in. Shakes.
He not from Rome alone, but Greece,
Like Jason, brought the golden fleece;
To him that language, though to none
Of th' others, as his own was known. Denham.
3. Stile; manner of expression.
Though his language should not be refin'd,
It must not be obscure and impudent. Roscommon.
Others for language all their care express,
And value books, as women, men, for dress:
Their praise is still—the stile is excellent,
The sense, they humbly take upon content. Pope.
light n.s. [leoht, Saxon.]
1. That quality or action of the medium of sight by which we see.
Light is propagated from luminous bodies in time, and spends about seven or eight minutes of an hour in passing from the sun to the earth. Newton's Opticks.
2. Illumination of mind; instruction; knowledge.
Of those things which are for direction of all the parts of our life needful, and not impossible to be discerned by the light of nature itself, are there not many which few mens natural capacity hath been able to find out. Hooker, b. i.
Light may be taken from the experiment of the horsetooth ring, how that those things which assuage the strife of the spirits, do help diseases contrary to the intention desired. Bacon's Natural Hisiory, No. 968.
I will place within them as a guide
My umpire conscience, whom if they will hear
Light after light well us'd they shall attain,
And to the end persisting safe arrive. Milton's Par. Lost.
I opened Ariosto in Italian, and the very first two lines gave me light to all I could desire. Dryden.
If this internal light, or any proposition which we take for inspired, be conformable to the principles of reason, or to the word of God, which is attested revelation, reason warrants it. Locke.
The ordinary words of language, and our common use of them, would have given us light into the nature of our ideas, if considered with attention. Locke.
The books of Varro concerning navigation are lost, which no doubt would have given us great light in those matters. Arbuthnot on Coins.
3. The part of a picture which is drawn with bright colours, or in which the light is supposed to fall.
Never admit two equal lights in the same picture; but the greater light must strike forcibly on those places of the picture where the principal figures are; diminishing as it comes nearer the borders. Dryden's Dufresnoy.
4. Reach of knowledge; mental view.
Light, and understanding, and wisdom, like the wisdom of the gods, was found in him. Dan. v. 11.
We saw as it were thick clouds, which did put us in some hope of land, knowing how that part of the South sea was utterly unknown, and might have islands or continents that hitherto were not come to light. Bacon's Nat. Hist.
They have brought to light not a few profitable experiments. Bacon's Natural History.
5. Point of view; situation; direction in which the light falls.
Frequent consideration of a thing wears off the strangeness of it; and shews it in its several lights, and various ways of appearance, to the view of the mind. South.
It is impossible for a man of the greatest parts to consider any thing in its whole extent, and in all its variety of lights. Addison's Spectator, No. 409.
An author who has not learned the art of ranging his thoughts, and setting them in proper lights, will lose himself in confusion. Addison's Spectator, No. 291.
I have endeavoured, throughout this discourse, that every former part might give strength unto all that follow, and every latter bring some light unto all before. Hooker, b. i.
We should compare places of scripture treating of the same point: thus one part of the sacred text could not fail to give light unto another. Locke's Essay on St. Paul's Epistles.
7. Any thing that gives light; a pharos; a taper.
That light we see is burning in my hall;
How far that little candle throws his beams,
So shines a good deed in a naughty world. Shakespeare.
Then he called for a light, and sprang in, and fell down before Paul. Acts xvi. 29.
I have set thee to be a light of the Gentiles, for salvation unto the ends of the earth. Acts xiii. 47.
Let them be for signs,
For seasons, and for days, and circling years;
And let them be for lights, as I ordain
Their office in the firmament of heav'n,
To give light on the earth. Milton's Par. Lost.
I put as great difference between our new lights and ancient truths, as between the sun and an evanid meteor. Glanville's Scep.
Several lights will not be seen,
If there be nothing else between;
Men doubt because they stand so thick i' th' sky,
If those be stars that paint the galaxy. Cowley.
I will make some offers at their safety, by fixing some marks like lights upon a coast, by which their ships may avoid at least known rocks. Temple.
He still must mourn
The sun, and moon, and ev'ry starry light,
Eclips'd to him, and lost in everlasting night. Prior.
magazíne n.s. [magazine, French, from the Arabick machsan, a treasure.]
1. A storehouse, commonly an arsenal or armoury, or repository of provisions.
If it should appear fit to bestow shipping in those harbours, it shall be very needful that there be a magazine of all necessary provisions and munitions. Raleigh's Essays.
Plain heroick magnitude of mind;
Their armories and magazines contemns. Milton's Agonist.
Some o'er the publick magazines preside,
And some are sent new forage to provide. Dryden's Virg.
Useful arms in magazines we place,
All rang'd in order, and disposed with grace. Pope.
His head was so well stored a magazine, that nothing could be proposed which he was not master of. Locke.
2. Of late this word has signified a miscellaneous pamphlet, from a periodical miscellany named the Gentleman's Magazine, by Edward Cave.
mam, mammá n.s. [mamma, Latin: this word is said to be found for the compellation of mother in all languages; and is therefore supposed to be the first syllables that a child pronounces.] The fond word for mother.
Poor Cupid sobbing scarce could speak;
Indeed, mamma, I did not know ye:
Alas! how easy my mistake?
I took you for your likeness Cloe. Prior.
Little masters and misses are great impediments to servants; the remedy is to bribe them, that they may not tell tales to papa and mamma. Swift's Rules to Servants.
mámmiform adj. [mammiforme, French; mamma and forma, Latin.] Having the shape of paps or dugs.
melanchóly n.s. [melancolie, Fr. from μελας and χολη.]
1. A disease, supposed to proceed from a redundance of black bile; but it is better known to arise from too heavy and too viscid blood: its cure is in evacuation, nervous medicines, and powerful stimuli. Quincy.
2. A kindness of madness, in which the mind is always fixed on one object.
I have neither the scholar's melancholy, which is emulation; nor the musician's, which is fantastical; nor the courtier's, which is proud; nor the soldier's, which is ambitious; nor the lawyer's, which is politick; nor the lady's, which is nice; nor the lover's, which is all these; but it is a melancholy of mine own, compounded of many simples, extracted from many objects, and, indeed, the sundry contemplation of my travels, in which my often rumination wraps me in a most humorous sadness. Shakesp. As you like it.
3. A gloomy, pensive, discontented temper.
He protested unto them, that he had only been to seek solitary places by an extreme melancholy that had possessed him. Sidney, b. ii.
All these gifts come from him; and if we murmur here, we may at the next melancholy be troubled that God did not make us angels. Taylor's holy Living.
This melancholy flatters, but unmans you;
What is it else but penury of soul,
A lazy frost, a numbness of the mind? Dryden.
mérrythought n.s. [merry and thought.] A forked bone on the body of fowls; so called because boys and girls pull in play at the two sides, the longest part broken off betokening priority of marriage.
Let him not be breaking merrythoughts under the table with my cousin. Eachard's Contempt of the Clergy.
méthodist n.s. [from method.]
1. A physician who practises by theory.
Our wariest physicians, not only chemists but methodists, give it inwardly in several constitutions and distempers. Boyle.
2. One of a new kind of puritans lately arisen, so called from their profession to live by rules and in constant method.
móbby n.s. An American drink made of potatoes.
moose n.s. The large American deer; the biggest of the species of deer.
mundúngus n.s. Stinking tobacco. Bailey.
náture n.s. [natura, Latin; nature, French.]
1. An imaginary being supposed to preside over the material and animal world.
Thou, nature, art my goddess; to thy law
My services are bound. Shakespeare's K. Lear.
When it was said to Anaxagoras, the Athenians have condemned you to die; he said again, and nature them. Bacon.
Let the postilion nature mount, and let
The coachman art be set. Cowley.
At home all riches that wise nature needs. Cowley.
Simple nature to his hope has giv'n,
Beyond the cloud-topt hill an humbler heav'n. Pope.
2. The native state or properties of any thing, by which it is discriminated from others.
Between the animal and rational province, some animals have a dark resemblance of the influxes of reason: so between the corporeal and intellectual world, there is man participating much of both natures. Hale's Orig. of Mankind.
3. The constitution of an animated body.
Nature, as it grows again tow'rd earth,
Is fashion'd for the journey, dull and heavy. Shakes.
We're not ourselves,
When nature, being opprest, commands the mind
To suffer with the body. Shakespeare's King Lear.
4. Disposition of mind; temper.
Nothing could have subdu'd nature
To such a lowness but his unkind daughters. Shakes.
A credulous father, and a brother noble,
Whose nature is so far from doing harms,
That he suspects none; on whose foolish honesty
My practices ride easy. Shakespeare's King Lear.
5. The regular course of things.
Was wrought by nature, not by vile offence. Shakes.
6. The compass of natural existence.
If their dam may be judge, the young apes are the most beautiful things in nature. Glanv.
7. Natural affection, or reverence; native sensations.
Have we not seen
The murd'ring son ascend his parent's bed,
Thro' violated nature force his way,
And stain the sacred womb where once he lay? Pope.
8. The state or operation of the material world.
He binding nature fast in fate,
Left conscience free and will. Pope.
9. Sort; species.
A dispute of this nature caused mischief in abundance betwixt a king and an archbishop. Dryden.
10. Sentiments or images adapted to nature, or conformable to truth and reality.
Only nature can please those tastes which are unprejudiced and refined. Addison.
Nature and Homer were he found the same. Pope.
11. Physics; the science which teaches the qualities of things.
Nature and nature's laws lay hid in night,
God said, let Newton be, and all was light. Pope.
to neese v.n. [nyse, Danish; niesen, Dutch.] To sneese; to discharge flatulencies by the nose. Retained in Scotland.
He went up and stretched himself upon him; and the child neesed seven times, and opened his eyes. 2 Kings iv. 35.
By his neesings a light doth shine, and his eyes are like the eye-lids of the morning. Job xli. 18.
nétwork n.s. [net and work.] Any thing reticulated or decussated, at equal distances, with interstices between the intersections.
Nor any skill'd in workmanship emboss'd;
Nor any skill'd in loops of fing'ring fine;
Might in their diverse cunning ever dare,
With this so curious network to compare. Spenser.
A large cavity in the sinciput was filled with ribbons, lace, and embroidery, wrought together in a curious piece of network. Addison's Spectator.
nonjúror n.s. [from non and juror.] One who conceiving James II. unjustly deposed, refuses to swear allegiance to those who have succeeded him.
noódle n.s. [from noddle or noddy.] A fool; a simpleton.
nóvel n.s. [nouvelle, French.]
1. A small tale, generally of love.
Nothing of a foreign nature; like the trifling novels which Ariosto inserted in his poems. Dryden.
Her mangl'd fame in barb'rous pastime lost,
The coxcomb's novel and the drunkard's toast. Prior.
2. A law annexed to the code.
By the civil law, no one was to be ordained a presbyter till he was thirty-five years of age: though by a later novel it was sufficient, if he was above thirty. Ayliffe's Par.
oats n.s. [aten, Saxon.] A grain, which in England is generally given to horses, but in Scotland supports the people.
It is of the grass leaved tribe; the flowers have no petals, and are disposed in a loose panicle: the grain is eatable. The meal makes tolerable good bread. Miller.
The oats have eaten the horses. Shakespeare.
It is bare mechanism, no otherwise produced than the turning of a wild oatbeard, by the insinuation of the particles of moisture. Locke.
For your lean cattle, fodder them with barley straw first, and the oat straw last. Mortimer's Husbandry.
His horse's allowance of oats and beans, was greater than the journey required. Swift.
ómelet n.s. [omelette, Fr.] A kind of pancake made with eggs.
ophióphagous adj. [οφις and φαγω.] Serpenteating. Not used.
All snakes are not of such poisonous qualities as common opinion presumeth; as is confirmable from ophiophagous nations, and such as feed upon serpents. Brown's V. Err.
ópium n.s. A juice, partly of the resinous, partly of the gummy kind. It is brought to us in flat cakes or masses, usually of a roundish figure, very heavy and of a dense texture, not perfectly dry: its colour is a dark brownish yellow; its smell is very unpleasant, of a dead faint kind; and its taste very bitter and very acrid. It is brought from Natolia, from Egypt, and from the East-Indies, where it is produced from the white garden poppy; a plant of which every part is full of a milky juice, and with which the fields of Asia-Minor are in many places sown as ours are with corn. When the heads grow to maturity, but are yet soft, green and full of juice, incisions are made in them, and from every one of these a few drops flow of a milky juice, which soon hardens into a solid consistence. These drops are gathered with great care, and the finest opium proceeds from the first incisions. In the countries where opium is produced, multitudes are employed in preparing it with water, honey and spices, and working it up into cakes; but what we generally have is the mere crude juice, or at most worked up with water, or a small quantity of honey sufficient to bring it into form. The ancients were greatly divided about the virtues and use of opium; some calling it a poison, and others the greatest of all medicines. At present it is in high esteem, and externally applied it is emollient, relaxing and discutient, and greatly promotes suppuration. A moderate dose of opium taken internally, is generally under a grain, yet custom will make people bear a dram as a moderate dose; but in that case nature is vitiated. Its first effect is the making the patient cheerful, as if he had drank moderately of wine; it removes melancholy, excites boldness, and dissipates the dread of danger; and for this reason the Turks always take it when they are going to battle in a larger dose than ordinary: it afterward quiets the spirits, eases pain, and disposes to sleep. After the effect of a dose of opium is over, the pain generally returns in a more violent manner; the spirits, which had been elevated by it, become lower than before, and the pulse languid. An immoderate dose of opium brings on a sort of drunkenness, cheerfulness and loud laughter, at first, and, after many terrible symptoms, death itself. Those who have accustomed themselves to an immoderate use of opium, are subject to relaxations and weaknesses of all the parts of the body; they are apt to be faint, idle and thoughtless; and are generally in a stupid and uncomfortable state, except just after they have taken a fresh dose: they lose their appetite, and in fine grow old before their time. Hill.
Sleep hath forsook and giv'n me o'er
To death's benumbing opium as my only cure. Milton.
The colour and taste of opium are, as well as its soporific or anodyne virtues, mere powers depending on its primary qualities, whereby it is fitted to produce different operations on different parts of our bodies. Locke.
orgásm n.s. [orgasme, Fr. οργασμος.] Sudden vehemence.
By means of the curious lodgment and inosculation of the auditory nerves, the orgasms of the spirits should be allayed, and perturbations of the mind quieted. Derham's Physico-Theol.
pátron n.s. [patron, Fr. patronus, Latin.]
1. One who countenances, supports or protects. Commonly a wretch who supports with insolence, and is paid with flattery.
I'll plead for you, as for my patron. Shakesp.
Ne'er let me pass in silence Dorset's name;
Ne'er cease to mention the continu'd debt,
Which the great patron only would forget. Prior.
2. A guardian saint.
Thou amongst those saints, whom thou do'st see,
Shall be a saint, and thine own nation's friend
And patron. Fairy Queen, b. i.
St. Michael is mentioned as the patron of the Jews, and is now taken by the Christians, as the protector general of our religion. Dryden.
3. Advocate; defender; vindicator.
We are no patrons of those things; the best defence whereof is speedy redress and amendment. Hooker, b. ii. s. 1.
Whether the minds of men have naturally imprinted on them the ideas of extension and number, I leave to those who are the patrons of innate principles. Locke.
4. One who has donation of ecclesiastical preferment.
pénsion n.s. [pension, Fr.] An allowance made to any one without an equivalent. In England it is generally understood to mean pay given to a state hireling for treason to his country.
A charity bestowed on the education of her young subjects has more merit than a thousand pensions to those of a higher fortune. Addison's Guardian, No 105.
He has liv'd with the great without flattery, and been a friend to men in power without pensions. Pope.
péppermint n.s. [pepper and mint.] Mint eminently hot.
to piss v.n. [pisser, Fr. pissen, Dutch.] To make water.
I charge the pissing conduit run nothing but claret. Shakesp.
One ass pisses, the rest piss for company. L'Estrange.
Once possess'd of what with care you save,
The wanton boys would piss upon your grave. Dryden.
píssburnt adj. Stained with urine.
póem n.s. [poema, Lat. ποιημα.] The work of a poet; a metrical composition.
A poem is not alone any work, or composition of the poets in many or few verses; but even one alone verse sometimes makes a perfect poem. Benj. Johnson.
The lady Anne of Bretaigne, passing through the presence of France, and espying Chartier, a famous poet, fast asleep, kissing him, said, we must honour the mouth whence so many golden poems have proceeded. Peacham on Poetry.
To you the promis'd poem I will pay. Dryden.
pólice n.s. [French.] The regulation and government of a city or country, so far as regards the inhabitants.
ptysmagogue n.s. [πτυσμα and αγω.] A medicine which discharges spittle. Dict.
queer adj. [of this word the original is not known: a correspondent supposes a queer man to be one who has a quære to his name in a list.] Odd; strange; original; particular.
He never went to bed till two in the morning, because he would not be a queer fellow; and was every now and then knocked down by a constable, to signalize his vivacity. Spect.
race n.s. [race, Fr. from radice, Lat.]
1. A family ascending.
2. Family descending.
He in a moment will create
Another world; out of man, a race
Of men innumerable, there to dwell. Milton.
Male he created thee, but thy consort
Female for race. Milton.
High as the mother of the gods in place,
And proud like her of an immortal race. Dryden.
Hence the long race of Alban fathers come. Dryden.
3. A generation; a collective family.
A race of youthful and unhandled colts,
Fetching mad bounds. Shakesp. Merchant of Venice.
4. A particular breed.
Of spirits malign, a better race to bring
Into their vacant room. Milton.
In the races of mankind and families of the world, there remains not to one above another the least pretence to have the right of inheritance. Locke.
5. Race of ginger. [rayz de gengibre, Spanish.] A root or sprig of ginger.
6. A particular strength or taste of wine, applied by Temple to any extraordinary natural force of intellect.
Of gardens there may be forms wholly irregular, that may have more beauty than of others; but they must owe it to some extraordinary dispositions of nature in the seat, or some great race of fancy or judgment in contrivance. Temple.
7. [Ras, Islandick.] Contest in running.
To describe races and games
Or tilting furniture. Milton.
8. Course on the feet.
The flight of many birds is swifter than the race of any beasts. Bacon.
9. Progress; course.
It suddenly fell from an excess of favour, which many examples having taught them, never stopt his race till it came to a headlong overthrow. Sidney.
My race of glory run, and race of shame. Milton.
Their ministry perform'd, and race well run. Milton.
The great light of day yet wants to run
Much of his race though steep. Milton.
He safe return'd, the race of glory past,
New to his friends embrace. Pope's Odyssey.
10. Train; process.
An offensive war is made, which is unjust in the aggressor; the prosecution and race of the war carrieth the defendant to invade the ancient patrimony of the first aggressor, who is now turned defendant; shall he sit down, and not put himself in defence? Bacon.
The race of this war fell upon the loss of Urbin, which he re-obtained. Bacon.
raínbow n.s. [rain and bow.] The iris; the semicircle of various colours which appears in showery weather.
Casting of the water in a most cunning manner, makes a perfect rainbow, not more pleasant to the eye than to the mind, so sensibly to see the proof of the heavenly iris. Sidney.
To add another hue unto the rainbow. Shakesp.
The rainbow is drawn like a nymph with large wings dispread in the form of a semicircle, the feathers of sundry colours. Peach.
They could not be ignorant of the promise of God never to drown the world, and the rainbow before their eyes to put them in mind of it. Brown's Vulgar Errours.
This rainbow never appears but where it rains in the sunshine, and may be made artificially by spouting up water, which may break aloft, and scatter into drops, and fall down like rain; for the sun, shining upon these drops, certainly causes the bow to appear to a spectator standing in a true position to the rain and sun: this bow is made by refraction of the sun's light in drops of falling rain. Newton's Opticks.
The dome's high arch reflects the mingled blaze,
And forms a rainbow of alternate rays. Pope.
relígion n.s. [religion, Fr. religio, Lat.]
1. Virtue, as founded upon reverence of God, and expectation of future rewards and punishments.
He that is void of fear, may soon be just,
And no religion binds men to be traitors. Benj. Johnson.
One spake much of right and wrong,
Of justice, of religion, truth and peace
And judgment from above. Milton.
If we consider it as directed against God, it is a breach of religion; if as to men, it is an offence against morality. South.
By her inform'd, we best religion learn,
Its glorious object by her aid discern. Blackmore.
Religion or virtue, in a large sense, includes duty to God and our neighbour; but in a proper sense, virtue signifies duty towards men, and religion duty to God. Watts.
2. A system of divine faith and worship as opposite to others.
The image of a brute, adorn'd
With gay religions, full of pomp and gold. Milton.
The christian religion, rightly understood, is the deepest and choicest piece of philosophy that is. More.
The doctrine of the gospel proposes to men such glorious rewards and such terrible punishments as no religion ever did, and gives us far greater assurance of their reality and certainty than ever the world had. Tillotson.
rúderary adj. [rudera, Lat.] Belonging to rubbish. Dict.
ruse n.s. [French.] Cunning; artifice; little stratagem; trick; wile; fraud; deceit. A French word neither elegant nor necessary.
I might here add much concerning the wiles and ruses, which these timid creatures use to save themselves. Ray.
sack n.s. [קש, Hebrew; σακκος; saccus, Latin; sæc, Sax. It is observable of this word, that it is found in all languages, and it is therefore conceived to be antediluvian.]
1. A bag; a pouch; commonly a large bag.
Our sacks shall be a mean to sack the city,
And we be lords and rulers over Roan. Shak. Henry VI.
Vastius caused the authors of that mutiny to be thrust into sacks, and in the sight of the fleet cast into the sea. Knolles.
2. The measure of three bushels.
3. A woman's loose robe.
sarcocéle n.s. [σαρξ and κηλη; sarcocele, Fr.] A fleshy excrescence of the testicles, which sometimes grow so large as to stretch the scrotum much beyond its natural size. Quincy.
Sátan n.s. [.ןטש Satanas, Latin.] The prince of hell; the devil; any wicked spirit.
I beheld Satan as lightning fall from heaven. Lu. x. 18.
They are much increased by the false suggestions of Satan. Sanderson's Judgment in one View.
The despiteful act
Of Satan done in Paradise. Milton.
sátire n.s. [satira, anciently satura, Lat. not from satyrus, a satyr; satire, Fr.] A poem in which wickedness or folly is censured. Proper satire is distinguished, by the generality of the reflections, from a lampoon which is aimed against a particular person; but they are too frequently confounded.
He dares to sing thy praises in a clime
Where vice triumphs, and virtue is a crime;
Where ev'n to draw the picture of thy mind,
Is satyr on the most of human kind. Dryden.
sáusage n.s. [saucisse, French; salsum, Latin.] A roll or ball made commonly of pork or veal, and sometimes of beef, minced very small, with salt and spice; sometimes it is stuffed into the guts of fowls, and sometimes only rolled in flower.
scíence n.s. [science, French; scientia, Latin.]
If we conceive God's sight or science, before the creation of the world, to be extended to all and every part of the world, seeing every thing as it is, his prescience or foresight of any action of mine, or rather his science or sight, from all eternity, lays no necessity on any thing to come to pass, any more than my seeing the sun move hath to do in the moving of it. Hamm.
2. Certainty grounded on demonstration.
So you arrive at truth, though not at science. Berkley.
3. Art attained by precepts, or built on principles.
Science perfects genius, and moderates that fury of the fancy which cannot contain itself within the bounds of reason. Dryd.
4. Any art or species of knowledge.
No science doth make known the first principles, whereon it buildeth; but they are always taken as plain and manifest in themselves, or as proved and granted already, some former knowledge having made them evident. Hooker.
Whatsoever we may learn by them, we only attain according to the manner of natural sciences, which mere discourse of wit and reason findeth out. Hooker.
I present you with a man
Cunning in musick and the mathematicks,
To instruct her fully in those sciences. Shakespeare.
The indisputable mathematicks, the only science heaven hath yet vouchsafed humanity, have but few votaries among the slaves of the Stagirite. Glanv. Sceps.
5. One of the seven liberal arts, grammar, rhetorick, logick, arithmetick, musick, geometry, astronomy.
Good sense, which only is the gift of heav'n,
And though no science, fairly worth the sev'n. Pope.
scomm n.s. [Perhaps from scomma, Latin.] A buffoon. A word out of use, and unworthy of revival.
The scomms, or buffoons of quality, are wolvish in conversation. L'Estrange.
septénnial adj. [septennis, Latin.]
1. Lasting seven years.
2. Happening once in seven years.
Being once dispensed with for his septennial visit, by a holy instrument from Petropolis, he resolved to govern them by subaltern ministers. Howel's Vocal Forest.
With weekly libels and septennial ale,
Their wish is full, to riot and to rail. Anonym.
sex n.s. [sexe, French; sexus, Latin.]
1. The property by which any animal is male or female.
These two great sexes animate the world. Milton.
Under his forming hands a creature grew,
Manlike, but different sex. Milton.
2. Womankind; by way of emphasis.
Unhappy sex! whose beauty is your snare;
Expos'd to trials; made too frail to bear. Dryd.
Shame is hard to be overcome; but if the sex once get the better of it, it gives them afterwards no more trouble. Garth.
slúbberdegullion n.s. [I suppose a cant word without derivation.] A paltry, dirty, sorry wretch.
Quoth she, although thou hast deserv'd,
Base slubberdegullion, to be serv'd
As thou did'st vow to deal with me,
If thou had'st got the victory. Hudibras.
snot n.s. [snote, Saxon; snot, Dutch.] The mucus of the nose.
Thus, when a greedy sloven once has thrown
His snot into the mess, 'tis all his own. Swift.
spermólogist n.s. [σπερμολογος.] One who gathers or treats of seeds. Dict.
spraints n.s. The dung of an otter. Dict.
státeswoman n.s. [state and woman.] A woman who meddles with publick affairs. In contempt.
How she was in debt, and where she meant
To raise fresh sums: she's a great stateswoman! B. Johnson.
Several objects may innocently be ridiculed, as the passions of our stateswomen. Addison.
steganógraphy n.s. [στεγανος and γραφω.] The art of secret writing by characters or cyphers, intelligible only to the persons who correspond one with another. Bailey.
súicide n.s. [suicidium, Latin.] Self-murder; the horrid crime of destroying one's self.
Child of despair, and suicide my name. Savage.
To be cut off by the sword of injured friendship is the most dreadful of all deaths, next to suicide. Clarissa.
tarántula n.s. [Italian; tarentule, French.] An insect whose bite is only cured by musick.
This word, lover, did no less pierce poor Pyrocles than the right tune of musick toucheth him that is sick of the tarantula. Sidney.
He that uses the word tarantula, without having any idea of what it stands for, means nothing at all by it. Locke.
tésticle n.s. [testiculus, Lat.] Stone.
That a bever, to escape the hunter, bites off his testicles or stones, is a tenent very antient. Brown's Vulg. Err.
The more certain sign from the pains reaching to the groins and testicles. Wiseman's Surgery.
thésmothete n.s. [thesmothete, Fr. θεσμοθετης, θεσμος and τιθημι.] A lawgiver.
thou n.s. [þu, Saxon; du, Dutch; in the oblique cases singular thee, þe, Saxon; in the plural ye, Saxon; in the oblique cases plural you, eow, Saxon.]
1. The second pronoun personal.
Is this a dagger which I see before me,
The handle tow'rd my hand? Come let me clutch thee.
I have thee not, and yet I see thee still.
Art thou not, fatal vision, sensible
To feeling as to sight. Shakesp. Macbeth.
I am as like to call thee so again,
To spit on thee again, to spurn thee too,
If thou wilt lend this money lend it not
As to thy friend. Shakesp. Merchant of Venice.
Thou, if there be a thou in this base town,
Who dares with angry Eupolis to frown;
Who at enormous villany turns pale,
And steers against it with a full-blown sail. Dryden.
2. It is used only in very familiar or very solemn language. When we speak to equals or superiors we say you; but in solemn language, and in addresses of worship, we say thou.
thréepenny adj. [triobolaris, Lat.] Vulgar; mean.
time n.s. [tima, Saxon; tym, Erse.]
1. The measure of duration.
This consideration of duration, as set out by certain periods, and marked by certain measures or epochas, is that which most properly we call time. Locke.
Time is like a fashionable host,
That slightly shakes his parting guest by th' hand,
But with his arms out-stretch'd, as he would fly,
Grasps the incomer. Shakesp. Troilus and Cressida.
Come what come may,
Time and the hour runs through the roughest day. Shakesp.
Nor will polished amber, although it send forth a gross exhalement, be found a long time defective upon the exactest scale. Brown's Vulgar Errours, b. ii.
Time, which consisteth of parts, can be no part of infinite duration, or of eternity; for then there would be infinite time past to day, which to morrow will be more than infinite. Time is therefore one thing, and infinite duration is another. Grew's Cosmol. b. i.
2. Space of time.
Daniel desired that he would give him time, and that he would shew him the interpretation. Dan. ii. 16.
He for the time remain'd stupidly good. Milton.
No time is allowed for digressions. Swift.
Pomanders, and knots of powders, you may have continually in your hand; whereas perfumes you can take but at times. Bacon's Nat. Hist. No. 929.
4. Season; proper time.
To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose. Ecclus. iii. 1.
They were cut down out of time, whose foundation was overflown with a flood. Job xxii. 16.
He found nothing but leaves on it; for the time of figs was not yet. Mar. xi. 13.
Knowing the time, that it is high time to awake out of sleep. Rom. xiii. 11.
Short were her marriage joys; for in the prime
Of youth her lord expir'd before his time. Dryden.
I hope I come in time, if not to make,
At least, to save your fortune and your honour:
Take heed you steer your vessel right. Dryden.
The time will come when we shall be forced to bring our evil ways to remembrance, and then consideration will do us little good. Calamy's Sermons.
5. A considerable space of duration; continuance; process of time.
Fight under him, there's plunder to be had;
A captain is a very gainful trade:
And when in service your best days are spent,
In time you may command a regiment. Dryden's Juvenal.
In time the mind reflects on its own operations about the ideas got by sensation, and thereby stores itself with a new set of ideas, ideas of reflection. Locke.
One imagines, that the terrestrial matter which is showered down along with rain enlarges the bulk of the earth, and that it will in time bury all things under-ground. Woodward.
I have resolved to take time, and, in spite of all misfortunes, to write you, at intervals, a long letter. Swift.
6. Age; particular part of time.
When that company died, what time the fire devoured two hundred and fifty men. Num. xxvi. 10.
They shall be given into his hand until a time and times. Dan. vii. 25.
If we should impute the heat of the season unto the cooperation of any stars with the sun, it seems more favourable for our times to ascribe the same unto the constellation of leo. Brown's Vulgar Errours, b. iv.
The way to please being to imitate nature, the poets and the painters, in ancient times, and in the best ages, have studied her. Dryden's Dufresnoy.
7. Past time.
I was the man in th' moon when time was. Shakespeare.
8. Early time.
Stanley at Bosworth field, though he came time enough to save his life, yet he staid long enough to endanger it. Bacon.
If they acknowledge repentance and a more strict obedience to be one time or other necessary, they imagine it is time enough yet to set about these duties. Rogers.
9. Time considered as affording opportunity.
The earl lost no time, but marched day and night. Clarend.
He continued his delights till all the enemies horse were passed through his quarters; nor did then pursue them in any time. Clarendon, b. viii.
Time is lost, which never will renew,
While we too far the pleasing path pursue,
Surveying nature. Dryden's Virgil.
10. Particular quality of the present.
Comets, importing change of times and states,
Brandish your crystal tresses in the sky. Shakespeare.
All the prophets in their age, the times
Of great Messiah sing. Milton's Par. Lost, b. xii.
If any reply, that the times and manners of men will not bear such a practice, that is an answer from the mouth of a professed time-server. South's Sermons.
11. Particular time.
Give order, that no sort of person
Have, any time, recourse unto the princes. Shakespeare.
The worst on me must light, when time shall be. Milt.
A time will come when my maturer muse,
In Cæsar's wars a nobler theme shall chuse. Dryden.
These reservoirs of snow they cut, distributing them to several shops, that from time to time supply Naples. Addison.
12. Hour of childbirth.
She intended to stay till delivered; for she was within one month of her time. Clarendon.
The first time I saw a lady dressed in one of these petticoats, I blamed her for walking abroad when she was so near her time; but soon I found all the modish part of the sex as far gone as herself. Addison's Spect. No. 127.
13. Repetition of any thing, or mention with reference to repetition.
Four times he cross'd the car of night. Milton.
Every single particle would have a sphere of void space around it many hundred thousand million million times bigger than the dimensions of that particle. Bentley.
Lord Oxford I have now the third time mentioned in this letter expects you. Swift.
14. Musical measure.
Musick do I hear!
Ha, ha! keep time. How sour sweet musick is
When time is broke and no proportion kept. Shakespeare.
You by the help of tune and time
Can make that song which was but rime. Waller.
On their exalted wings
To the cœlestial orbs they climb,
And with th' harmonious spheres keep time. Denham.
Heroes who o'ercome, or die,
Have their hearts hung extremely high;
The strings of which in battle's heat
Against their very corslets beat;
Keep time with their own trumpet's measure,
And yield them most excessive pleasure. Prior.
tóilet n.s. [toilette, Fr.] A dressing table.
The merchant from the exchange returns in peace,
And the long labours of the toilet cease. Pope.
tóry n.s. [A cant term, derived, I suppose, from an Irish word signifying a savage.] One who adheres to the antient constitution of the state, and the apostolical hierarchy of the church of England, opposed to a whig.
The knight is more a tory in the country than the town, because it more advances his interest. Addison.
To confound his hated coin, all parties and religions join whigs, tories. Swift.
transportátion n.s. [from transport.]
1. Removal; conveyance; carriage.
Sir Francis Cottington and Mr. Endymion Porter had been sent before to provide a vessel for their transportation. Wotton's Life of Buckingham.
Some were not so solicitous to provide against the plague, as to know whether we had it from the malignity of our own air, or by transportation. Dryden.
2. Banishment for felony.
3. Ecstatick violence of passion.
All pleasures that affect the body must needs weary, because they transport, and all transportation is a violence; and no violence can be lasting but determines upon the falling of the spirits. South.
turd n.s. [turd, Saxon.] Excrement.
twíster n.s. [from twist.] One who twists; a ropemaker. To this word I have annexed some remarkable lines, which explain twist in all its senses.
When a twister a-twisting will twist him a twist,
For the twisting of his twist, he three twines doth intwist;
But if one of the twines of the twist do untwist,
The twine that untwisteth untwisteth the twist.
Untwirling the twine that untwisteth between,
He twirls with his twister the two in a twine;
Then twice having twisted the twines of the twine,
He twitcheth the twine he had twined in twain.
The twain that in twining before in the twine,
As twins were intwisted, he now doth untwine,
'Twixt the twain intertwisting a twine more between,
He, twirling his twister, makes a twist of the twine. Wallis.
twittletwáttle n.s. [A ludicrous reduplication of twattle.] Tattle; gabble. A vile word.
Insipid twittletwatles, frothy jests, and jingling witticisms, inure us to a misunderstanding of things. L'Estrange.
úniverse n.s. [univers, Fr. universum, Lat.] The general system of things.
Creeping mumur, and the poring dark,
Fills the wide vessel of the universe. Shakespeare.
God here sums up all into man; the whole into a part; the universe into an individual. South's Sermons.
Father of heav'n!
Whose work call'd out this universe to birth. Prior.
urinátor n.s. [urinateur, Fr. urinator, Lat.] A diver; one who searches under water.
The precious things that grow there, as pearl, may be much more easily fetched up by the help of this, than by any other way of the urinators. Wilkins's Math. Magic.
Those relations of urinators belong only to those places where they have dived, which are always rocky. Ray.
usquebáugh n.s. [An Irish and Erse word, which signifies the water of life.] It is a compounded distilled spirit, being drawn on aromaticks; and the Irish sort is particularly distinguished for its pleasant and mild flavour. The Highland sort is somewhat hotter; and, by corruption, in Scottish they call it whisky.
útis n.s. A word which probably is corrupted, at least, is not now understood.
Then here will be old utis: it will be an excellent stratagem. Shakespeare's Hen. IV.
váticide n.s. [vates and cædo, Latin.] A murderer of poets.
The caitiff vaticide conceiv'd a prayer. Pope's Dunciad.
váulty adj. [from vault.] Arched; concave. A bad word.
I will kiss thy detestable bones,
And put my eye-balls in thy vaulty brows,
And ring these fingers with thy houshold worms. Shakesp.
I'll say that is not the lark, whose notes do beat
The vaulty heav'ns so high above our heads. Shakesp.
ventríloquist n.s. [ventriloque, Fr. venter and loquor, Lat.] One who speaks in such a manner as that the sound seems to issue from his belly.
vidúity n.s. [from viduus, Lat.] Widowhood.
vigesimátion n.s. [vegesimus, Latin.] The act of putting to death every twentieth man. Bailey.
virágo n.s. [Latin.]
1. A female warriour; a woman with the qualities of a man.
Melpomene represented like a virago or manly lady, with a majestick and grave countenance. Peacham.
To arms! to arms! the fierce virago cries,
And swift as lightening to the combat flies. Pope.
2. It is commonly used in detestation for an impudent turbulent woman.
vírtue n.s. [virtus, Lat.]
1. Moral goodness.
Either I'm mistaken, or there is virtue in that Falstaff. Shakes.
If there's a power above us,
And that there is, all nature cries aloud
Through all her works, he must delight in virtue,
And that which he delights in must be happy. Addison.
Virtue only makes our bliss below. Pope.
The character of prince Henry is improved by Shakespear; and through the veil of his vices and irregularities, we see a dawn of greatness and virtue. Shakesp. illustrated.
2. A particular moral excellence.
In Belmont is a lady,
And she is fair, and, fairer than that word,
Of wond'rous virtues. Shakesp. Merchant of Venice.
Remember all his virtues,
And shew mankind that goodness is your care. Addison.
3. Medicinal quality.
All blest secrets,
All you unpublish'd virtues of the earth,
Be aidant and remediate. Shakesp. K. Lear.
The virtuous bezoar is taken from the beast that feedeth upon the mountains; and that without virtue from those that feed in the vallies. Bacon.
4. Medicinal efficacy.
An essay writer must practise the chymical method, and give the virtue of a full draught in a few drops. Addison.
5. Efficacy; power.
If neither words, nor herbs will do, I'll try stones; for there's a virtue in them. L'Estrange.
Where there is a full purpose to please God, there, what a man can do, shall, by virtue thereof, be accepted. South.
They are not sure, by virtue of syllogism, that the conclusion certainly follows from the premises. Locke.
This they shall attain, partly in virtue of the promise made by God; and partly in virtue of piety. Atterbury.
He used to travel through Greece, by virtue of this fable, which procured him reception in all the towns. Addison.
6. Acting power.
Jesus knowing that virtue had gone out of him, turned him about. Mark v. 30.
7. Secret agency; efficacy, without visible or material action.
She moves the body, which she doth possess;
Yet no part toucheth, but by virtue's touch. Davies.
8. Bravery; valour.
Trust to thy single virtue; for thy soldiers
Took their discharge. Shakesp. K. Lear.
The conquest of Palestine, with singular virtue they performed, and held that kingdom some few generations. Raleigh.
9. Excellence; that which gives excellence.
In the Greek poets, as also in Plautus, the oeconomy of poems is better observed than in Terence; who thought the sole grace and virtue of their fable, the sticking in of sentences, as ours do the forcing in of jests. B. Johnson.
10. One of the orders of the celestial hierarchy.
Thrones, domination, princedoms, virtues, pow'rs. Milt.
A winged virtue through th' etherial sky,
From orb to orb unwearied dost thou fly. Tickell.
wátermelon n.s. A plant. It hath trailing branches, as the cucumber or melon, and is distinguished from other cucurbitaceous plants, by its leaf deeply cut and jagged, and by its producing uneatable fruit. Miller.
whig n.s. [hwœg, Saxon.]
2. The name of a faction.
The southwest counties of Scotland have seldom corn enough to serve them round the year; and the northern parts producing more than they need, those in the west come in the Summer to buy at Leith the stores that come from the north; and from a word, whiggam, used in driving their horses, all that drove were called the whiggamors, and shorter the whiggs. Now in that year before the news came down of duke Hamilton's defeat, the ministers animated their people to rise and march to Edinburgh; and they came up marching on the head of their parishes with an unheard-of fury, praying and preaching all the way as they came. The marquis of Argyle and his party came and headed them, they being about six thousand. This was called the whiggamor's inroad; and ever after that, all that opposed the court came in contempt to be called whigs: and from Scotland the word was brought into England, where it is now one of our unhappy terms of disunion. Burnet.
Whoever has a true value for church and state, should avoid the extremes of whig for the sake of the former, and the extremes of tory on the account of the latter. Swift.
whíggism n.s. [from whig.] The notions of a whig.
I could quote passages from fifty pamphlets, wholly made up of whiggism and atheism. Swift.
wit n.s. [sgewit, Saxon; from witan, to know.]
1. The powers of the mind; the mental faculties; the intellects. This is the original signification.
Who would set his wit to so foolish a bird? Shakespeare.
The king your father was reputed for
A prince most prudent, of an excellent
And unmatch'd wit and judgment. Shakesp. Hen. VIII.
Will puts in practice what the wit deviseth:
Will ever acts, and wit contemplates still:
And as from wit the power of wisdom riseth,
All other virtues daughters are of will.
Will is the prince, and wit the counsellor,
Which doth for common good in council sit;
And when wit is resolv'd, will lends her power
To execute what is advis'd by wit. Davies's Ireland.
For wit and pow'r, their last endeavours bend
T' outshine each other. Dryden.
2. Imagination; quickness of fancy.
They never meet, but there's a skirmish of wit between them.—
—Alas, in our last conflict four of his five wits went halting off, and now is the whole man govern'd by one. Shakesp.
Lewd, shallow, hair-brain'd huffs, make atheism and contempt of religion, the only badge and character of wit. South.
And though a tun in thy large bulk be writ,
Yet thou art but a kilderkin of wit. Dryden.
Wit lying most in the assemblage of ideas, and putting those together with quickness and variety, wherein can be found any resemblance, or congruity, thereby to make up pleasant pictures in the fancy. Judgment, on the contrary, lies in separating carefully one from another, ideas, wherein can be found the least difference, thereby to avoid being misled by similitude. Locke.
Cou'd any but a knowing prudent cause
Begin such motions, and assign such laws?
If the great mind had form'd a different frame,
Might not your wanton wit the system blame? Blackmore.
3. Sentiments produced by quickness of fancy.
All sorts of men take a pleasure to gird at me. The brain of this foolish compounded clay, man, is not able to invent any thing that tends more to laughter, than what I invent, and is invented on me. I am not only witty in myself, but the cause that wit is in other men. Shakespeare.
His works become the frippery of wit. B. Johnson.
The Romans made those times the standard of their wit, when they subdu'd the world. Sprat.
The definition of wit is only this; that it is a propriety of thoughts and words; or, in other terms, thoughts and words elegantly adapted to the subject. Dryden.
Let a lord once but own the happy lines;
How the wit brightens, and the style refines! Pope.
4. A man of fancy.
Intemperate wits will spare neither friend nor foe; and make themselves the common enemies of mankind. L'Estr.
A poet, being too witty himself, could draw nothing but wits in a comedy: even his fools were infected with the disease of their author. Dryden.
To tell them wou'd a hundred tongues require;
Or one vain wit's, that might a hundred tire. Pope.
5. A man of genius.
Searching wits, of more mechanick parts;
Who grac'd their age with new-invented arts:
Those who to worth their bounty did extend,
And those who knew that bounty to commend. Dryden.
How vain that second life in others breath?
Th' estate which wits inherit after death;
Ease, health, and life, for this they must resign,
Unsure the tenure, but how vast the fine!
The great man's curse, without the gain endure;
Be envy'd, wretched; and be flatter'd, poor. Pope.
6. Sense; judgment.
Strong was their plot,
Their practice close, their faith suspected not;
Their states far off, and they of wary wit. Daniel.
Come, leave the loathed stage,
And this more loathsome age;
Where pride and impudence in faction knit,
Usurp the chair of wit. B. Johnson.
Though his youthful blood be fir'd with wine,
He wants not wit the danger to decline. Dryden.
7. In the plural. Sound mind; intellect not crazed.
If our wits run the wild-goose chace, I have done: for thou hast more of the wild-goose in one of thy wits, than I have in my whole five. Shakesp. Romeo and Juliet.
I had a son,
Now outlaw'd from my blood; he sought my life:
The grief hath craz'd my wits. Shakesp. K. Lear.
Are his wits safe? is he not light of brain? Shakespeare.
Sound sleep cometh of moderate eating; he riseth early, and his wits are with him: but the pain of watching, and choler, and pangs of the belly, are with an unsatiable man. Ecclus. xxxi. 20.
Wickedness is voluntary frenzy, and every sinner does more extravagant things than any man that is crazed, and out of his wits, only that he knows better what he does. Tillotson.
No man in his wits can seriously think that his own soul hath existed from all eternity. Bentley.
8. Contrivance; stratagem; power of expedients.
How can it chuse but bring the simple to their wits end? how can it chuse but vex and amaze them? Hooker.
I was like to be apprehended for the witch of Brainford; but that my admirable dexterity of wit, counterfeiting the action of an old woman, delivered me. Shakespeare.
Sleights from his wit and subtlety proceed. Milton.
The neighbourhood were at their wits end, to consider what would be the issue. L'Estrange.
wítling n.s. [Diminutive of wit.] A pretender to wit; a man of petty smartness.
You have taken off the senseless ridicule, which for many years the witlings of the town have turned upon their fathers and mothers. Addison's Spectator.
Those half-learn'd witlings num'rous in our isle,
As half-form'd insects on the banks of Nile. Pope.
A beau and witling perish'd in the throng,
One dy'd in metaphor, and one in song. Pope.
ycleped [The participle passive of clepe, to call; clepan, Saxon; with the increasing particle y, which was used in the old English in the preterites and participles, from the Saxon ge.] Called; termed; named.
But come, thou goddess, fair and free,
In heav'n yclep'd Euphrosine,
And by men, heart-easing mirth. Milton.
year n.s. [gear, Saxon.] If one by the word year mean twelve months of thirty days each, i.e. three hundred and sixty days; another intend a solar year of three hundred sixty-five days; and a third mean a lunar year, or twelve lunar months, i.e. three hundred fifty-four days, there will be a great variation and error in their account of things, unless they are well apprized of each other's meaning. Watts's Logick.
See the minutes, how they run:
How many makes the hour full compleat,
How many hours bring about the day,
How many days will finish up the year,
How many years a mortal man may live. Shakespeare.
With the year
Seasons return, but not to me returns
Day, or the sweet approach of morn. Milton.
Oviparous creatures have eggs enough at first conceived in them, to serve them for many years laying, allowing such a proportion for every year, as will serve for one or two incubations. Ray on the Creation.
He accepted a curacy of thirty pounds a year. Swift.
2. It it often used plurally, without a plural termination.
I fight not once in forty year. Shakespeare.
3. In the plural old age.
That smiles his cheek in years, and knows the trick
To make my lady laugh when she's dispos'd,
Told our intents. Shakesp. Love's Labour Lost.
There died also Cecile, mother to king Edward IV. being of extreme years, and who had lived to see three princes of her body crowned, and four murthered. Bacon's Hen. VII.
He look'd in years, yet in his years were seen,
A youthful vigour, and autumnal green. Dryden.
zed n.s. The name of the letter z.
Thou whoreson zed, thou unnecessary letter. Shakespeare.
zeúgma n.s. [from ζευγμα.] A figure in Grammar, when a verb agreeing with divers nouns, or an adjective with divers substantives, is referred to one expresly, and to the other by supplement, as lust overcame shame, boldness fear, and madness reason.