Larger font
Smaller font
Noah Webster’s 1828 Dictionary - Contents
  • Results
  • Related
  • Featured
No results found for: "".
  • Weighted Relevancy
  • Content Sequence
  • Relevancy
  • Earliest First
  • Latest First
    Larger font
    Smaller font


    ANARHICHAS, n. The sea wolf; a genus of ravenous fish, of the order of Apodals, found in the northern seas.

    ANAS, n. [L.] A genus of water fowl of the order Anseres; including the swans, geese, and ducks. The species are very numerous.

    ANASARCA, n. [Gr. in or between, and flesh.]

    A species of dropsy, from a serous humor spread between the skin and flesh; or an accumulation of lymph in the cellular membrane, occasioning a soft, pale, inelastic swelling of the skin.NWAD ANASARCA.2

    ANASARCOUS, a. Belonging to anasarca, or dropsy; dropsical.

    ANASTOMOSE, v.i. s as z. [Gr. mouth.]

    To inosculate; to unite the mouth of one vessel with another, as the arteries with the veins.NWAD ANASTOMOSE.2

    ANASTOMOSY, ANASTOMOSIS, n. The inosculation of vessels, or the opening of one vessel into another, as an artery into a vein; a relaxation or dilation of the mouths of vessels; also the communication of two vessels, as a vein with a vein.

    ANASTOMOTIC, a. Opening the mouths of vessels, or removing obstructions.

    ANASTOMOTIC, n. a medicine supposed to have the power of opening the mouths of vessels, and promoting circulation, such as cathartics, deobstruents and sudorifics.

    ANASTROPHE, ANASTROPHY, n. [Gr. a conversion or inversion.]

    In rhetoric and grammar, an inversion of the natural order of words; as saxa per et scopulos, for per saxa et scopulos.NWAD ANASTROPHE.2

    ANATASE, n. [Gr. extension, so named from the length of its crystals.]

    Octahedrite; octahedral oxyd of titanium; a mineral that shows a variety of colors by reflected light, from indigo blue to reddish brown. It is usually crystallized in acute, elongated, pyramidical octahedrons.NWAD ANATASE.2

    ANATHEMA, n. [Gr. to place behind, backward or at a distance, to separate.]

    1. Excommunication with curses. Hence, a curse or denunciation by ecclesiastical authority, accompanying excommunication. This species of excommunication was practiced in the ancient churches, against notorious offenders; all churches were warned not to receive them; all magistrates and private persons were admonished not to harbor or maintain them, and priests were enjoined not to converse with them, or attend their funeral.NWAD ANATHEMA.2

    There are two kinds of anathemas, judiciary and abjuratory. The former is pronounced by a council, pope or bishop; the latter is the act of a convert who anathematizes the heresy which he abjures.NWAD ANATHEMA.3

    2. In heathen mythology, an offering, or present made to some deity and hung up in a temple. Whenever a person quitted his employment, he set apart, or dedicated his tools to his patron-deity. Persons who had escaped danger remarkably, or been otherwise very fortunate, testified their gratitude by some offering to their deity.NWAD ANATHEMA.4

    ANATHEMATICAL, a. Pertaining to anathema.

    ANATHEMATICALLY, adv. In the manner of anathema.

    ANATHEMATIZATION, n. The act of anathematizing.

    ANATHEMATIZE, v.t. To excommunicate with a denunciation of curses; to pronounce an anathema against.

    ANATHEMATIZED, pp. Excommunicated with curses.

    ANATHEMATIZING, ppr. Pronouncing an anathema.

    ANATIFEROUS, a. [L. anas, a duck and fero, to produce.] Producing ducks.

    ANATOCISM, n. [L. anatocismus, from Gr. again and usury.]

    Interest upon interest; the taking of compound interest; or the contract by which such interest is secured. [Rarely used.]NWAD ANATOCISM.2

    ANATOMICAL, a. Belonging to anatomy or dissection; produced by or according to the principles of anatomy, or natural structure of the body; relating to the parts of the body when dissected or separated.

    ANATOMICALLY, adv. In an anatomical manner; by means of dissection; according to the doctrine of anatomy.

    ANATOMIST, n. One who dissects bodies; more generally, one who is skilled in the art of dissection, or versed in the doctrine and principles of anatomy.

    ANATOMIZE, v.t. To dissect an animal; to divide into the constituent parts, for the purpose of examining each by itself; to lay open the interior structure of the parts of a body or subject; as, to anatomize an animal or plant; to anatomize an argument.

    ANATOMIZED, pp. Dissected, as an animal body.

    ANATOMIZING, ppr. Dissecting.

    ANATOMY, n. [Gr. through and to cut.]

    1. The art of dissecting, or artificially separating the different parts of an animal body, to discover their situation, structure and economy.NWAD ANATOMY.2

    2. The doctrine of the structure of the body, learned by dissection; as, a physician understands anatomy.NWAD ANATOMY.3

    3. The act of dividing any thing, corporeal or intellectual, for the purpose of examining its parts; as, the anatomy of a plant, or of a discourse.NWAD ANATOMY.4

    4. The body stripped of its integuments; a skeleton, or the corporeal frame of bones entire, without the skin, flesh and vessels; an improper use of the word, and vulgar.NWAD ANATOMY.5

    5. Ironically, a meager person.NWAD ANATOMY.6

    ANATREPTIC, a. [Gr. to overturn.]

    Overthrowing; defeating; prostrating; a word applied to the dialogues of Plato, which represent a complete defeat in the gymnastic exercises.NWAD ANATREPTIC.2

    ANATRON, n. [Gr. niter.]

    1. Soda or mineral fixed alkali.NWAD ANATRON.2

    2. Spume or glass gall, a scum which rises upon melted glass, in the furnace, and when taken off, dissolves in the air, and then coagulates into common salt.NWAD ANATRON.3

    3. The salt which collects on the walls of vaults.NWAD ANATRON.4

    ANBURY, n. A disease in turneps, or an injury occasioned by a fly.

    ANCESTOR, n. [L. antecessor, of ante, before, and cedo, to go.]

    One from whom a person descends, either by the father or mother, at any distance of time, in the tenth or hundredth generation. An ancestor precedes in the order of nature or blood; a predecessor, in the order of office.NWAD ANCESTOR.2

    ANCESTRAL, a. Relating or belonging to ancestors; claimed or descending from ancestors; as, an ancestral estate.

    ANCESTRY, n. A series of ancestors, or progenitors; lineage, or those who compose the line of natural descent. Hence, birth or honorable descent.

    ANCHILOPS, n. [Gr. a goat and an eye.]

    The goat’s eye; an abscess in the inner angle of the eye; an incipient fistula lachrymalis.NWAD ANCHILOPS.2

    ANCHOR, n. [L. anchora; Gr.]

    1. An iron instrument for holding a ship or other vessel at rest in water. It is a strong shank, with a ring at one end, to which a cable may be fastened; and with two arms and flukes at the other end, forming a suitable angle with the shank to enter the ground.NWAD ANCHOR.2

    In seamen’s language, the anchor comes home, when it is dislodged from its bed, so as to drag by the violence of the wind, sea or current.NWAD ANCHOR.3

    Foul anchor is when the anchor hooks or is entangled with another anchor, or with a wreck or cable, or when the slack cable is entangled.NWAD ANCHOR.4

    The anchor a cock bill, is when it is suspended perpendicularly from the cat head, ready to be let go.NWAD ANCHOR.5

    The anchor a peek, is when it is drawn in so tight as to bring the ship directly over it.NWAD ANCHOR.6

    The anchor is a trip, or a weigh, when it is just drawn out of the ground, in a perpendicular direction, either by the cable or the buoy-rope.NWAD ANCHOR.7

    To back an anchor is to lay down a small anchor ahead of that by which the ship rides, with the cable fastened to the crown of the latter to prevent its coming home.NWAD ANCHOR.8

    At anchor is when a ship rides by her anchor. Hence, to lie or ride at anchor.NWAD ANCHOR.9

    To cast anchor, or to anchor, is to let go an anchor, to keep a ship at rest.NWAD ANCHOR.10

    To weigh anchor is to heave or raise the anchor out of the ground.NWAD ANCHOR.11

    Anchors are of different sizes. The principal, and that on which most dependence is placed, is the sheet anchor. Then come the best bower, the small bower, the space anchor, the stream anchor, and the kedge anchor, which is the smallest.NWAD ANCHOR.12

    2. In a figurative sense, that which gives stability or security; that on which we place dependence for safety.NWAD ANCHOR.13

    Which hope we have as an anchor of the soul, both sure and stedfast. Hebrews 6:19.NWAD ANCHOR.14

    3. In architecture, anchors are carved work, somewhat resembling an anchor. It is commonly a part of the ornaments of the boultins of capitals in the Tuscan, Doric and Ionic orders, and on the moldings of cornices.NWAD ANCHOR.15

    In heraldry, anchors are emblems of hope.NWAD ANCHOR.16

    ANCHOR, v.t.

    1. To place at anchor; to moor; as to anchor a ship.NWAD ANCHOR.18

    2. To fix or fasten on; to fix in a stable conditionNWAD ANCHOR.19

    ANCHOR, v.i.

    1. To cast anchor; to come to anchor; as, our ship anchored off the isle of Wight.NWAD ANCHOR.21

    2. To stop; to fix or rest on.NWAD ANCHOR.22

    ANCHORABLE, a. Fit for anchorage. [Not used.]


    1. Anchor-ground; a place where a ship can anchor, where the ground is not too rocky, nor the water too deep nor too shallow.NWAD ANCHORAGE.2

    2. The hold of a ship at anchor, or rather the anchor and all the necessary tackle for anchoring.NWAD ANCHORAGE.3

    3. A duty imposed on ships for anchoring in a harbor.NWAD ANCHORAGE.4

    ANCHORED, pp. Lying or riding at anchor; held by an anchor; moored; fixed in safety.

    ANCHORESS, n. A female anchoret.

    ANCHORET, ANCHORITE, n. [Gr. to retire and to go. Written by some authors, anachoret.]

    A hermit; a recluse; one who retires from society into a desert or solitary place, to avoid the temptations of the world and devote himself to religious duties. Also a monk, who, with the leave of the abbot, retires to a cave or cell, with an allowance from the monastery, to live in solitude.NWAD ANCHORET.2

    ANCHOR-GROUND, n. Ground suitable for anchoring.

    ANCHOR-HOLD, n. The hold or fastness of an anchor; security.

    ANCHORING, ppr. Mooring; coming to anchor; casting anchor.

    ANCHOR-SMITH, n. The maker or forger of anchors, or one whose occupation is to make anchors.

    ANCHOVY, n. A small fish, about three inches in length, of the genus Clupea, found and caught, in vast numbers, in the Mediterranean, and pickled for exportation. It is used as a sauce or seasoning.

    ANCHOVY-PEAR, n. A fruit of Jamaica, constituting the genus Grias. It is large, contains a stone, and is esculent.

    ANCIENT, a. Usually pronounced most anomalously, ancient. The pronunciation of the first vowel ought to accord with that is antiquity, anger, anchor, etc. [Lt. ante, antiquus.] We usually apply ancient and old to things subject to gradual decay. We say, an old man, an ancient record; but never the old sun, old stars, an old river or mountain.

    1. Old; that happened or existed in former times, usually at a great distance of time; as, ancient authors, ancient days. Old, says Johnson, relates to the duration of the thing itself, as an old coat; and ancient to time in general, as an ancient dress. But this distinction is not always observed. We say, in old times, as well as ancient times; old customs, etc. In general, however, ancient is opposed to modern, and old to new, fresh or recent. When we speak of a thing that existed formerly, which as ceased to exist, we commonly use ancient, as ancient republics’ ancient heroes, and not old republics, old heroes. But when the thing which began or existed in former times, is still in existence, we use either ancient or old; as, ancient statues or paintings, or old statues or paintings; ancient authors, or old authors, meaning books. But in these examples ancient seems the most correct, or best authorized. Some persons apply ancient to men advanced in years still living; but this use is not common in modern practice, though found in scripture.NWAD ANCIENT.2

    With the ancient is wisdom. Job.NWAD ANCIENT.3

    2. Old; that has been of long duration; as, an ancient forest; an ancient city.NWAD ANCIENT.4

    3. Known from ancient times; as the ancient continent, opposed to the new continent.NWAD ANCIENT.5

    ANCIENT, n. Generally used in the plural, ancients. Those who lived in former ages, opposed to moderns.

    1. In scripture, very old men. Also, governors, rulers, political and ecclesiastical.NWAD ANCIENT.7

    The Lord will enter into judgment with the ancients of his people. Isaiah 3:14; Jeremiah 19:1.NWAD ANCIENT.8

    God is called the Ancient of days from his eternal existence. Daniel 7:9, 13, 22.NWAD ANCIENT.9

    Hooker uses the word for seniors, “They were his ancients,” but the use is not authorized.NWAD ANCIENT.10

    2. Ancient is also used for a flag or streamer, in a ship of war; and for an ensign or the bearer of a flag, as in Shakespeare. Cowel supposed the word, when used for a flag, to be a corruption of end-sheet, a flag at the stern. It is probably the Fr. enseigne.NWAD ANCIENT.11

    Ancient demain, in English Law, is a tenure by which all manors belonging to the crown, in the reign of William the Conqueror, were held. The numbers, names etc. of these were all entered in a book called Domes-day Book.NWAD ANCIENT.12

    ANCIENTLY, adv. In old times; in times long since past; as Rome was anciently more populous than at present.

    ANCIENTNESS, n. The state of being ancient; antiquity; existence from old times.

    ANCIENTRY, n. Dignity of birth; the honor of ancient lineage.

    ANCIENTY, n. Age; antiquity. [Not used.]

    ANCIENTY, n. In some old English statutes and authors, eldership or seniority.

    ANCILLARY, a. [L. ancilla, a female servant.]

    Pertaining to a maid servant, or female service; subservient as a maid servant.NWAD ANCILLARY.2

    ANCIPITAL, a. [L. anceps.]

    Doubtful, or double; double-faced or double-formed; applied to the stem of a plant, it signifies a two edged stem, compressed and forming two opposite angles.NWAD ANCIPITAL.2

    ANCOME, n. A small ulcerous swelling coming suddenly.

    ANCON, n. [L. ancon; Gr. the elbow.]

    The olecranon, the upper end of the ulna, or elbow.NWAD ANCON.2

    ANCONE, n. [L. ancon, Gr.] In architecture, the corner of a wall, crossbeam or rafter.

    ANCONY, n. [Probably from Gr., the cubit, from its resemblance to the arm.]

    In iron works, a piece of half wrought iron, in the shape of a bar in the middle, but rude and unwrought at the ends. A piece of cast iron is melted off and hammered at a forge, into a mass of two feet long and square, which is called a bloom; then, carried to a finery, and worked into an ancony; it is then sent to a chafery, where the ends are wrought into the shape of the middle, and whole is made into a bar.NWAD ANCONY.2

    AND, conj.

    And is a conjunction, connective or conjoining word. It signifies that a word or part of a sentence is to be added to what precedes. Thus, give me an apple and an orange; that is, give me an apple, add or give in addition to that, an orange. John and Peter and James rode to New York, that is, John rode to New York; add or further, Peter rode to New York; add James rode to New York.NWAD AND.2

    ANDALUSITE, n. A massive mineral, of a flesh or rose red color; sometimes found crystallized in imperfect four-sided prisms, nearly or quite rectangular. Its hardness is nearly equal to that of Corundum, and it is infusible by the blow pipe. It has its name from Andalusia, in Spain, where it was first discovered.

    ANDANTE, [Eng. to wend, to wander.]

    In music, a word used to direct to a movement moderately slow, between largo and allegro.NWAD ANDANTE.2

    ADDARAC, n. Red orpiment.

    ANDEAN, a. Pertaining to the Andes. The great chain of mountains extending through S. America.

    ANDIRA, n. A species of bat in Brazil, nearly as large as a pigeon.

    ANDIRON, n.

    An iron utensil used, in Great Britain, where coal is the common fuel, to support the ends of a spit; but in America, used to support the wood in fire places.NWAD ANDIRON.2

    ANDORINHA, n. The Brazilian swallow.

    ANDRANATOMY, n. [Gr. a man and dissection.]

    The dissection of a human body, especially of a male.NWAD ANDRANATOMY.2

    ANDREOLITE, n. A mineral, the harmotome, or cross-stone.

    ANDROGYNAL, ANDROGYNOUS, a. [Gr. a man and woman.]

    Having two sexes; being male and female; hermaphroditical.NWAD ANDROGYNAL.2

    In botany, the word is applied to plants which bear both male and female flowers from the same root, as birch, walnut, oak, chestnut, mulberry, etc. These plants constitute the monecian class in Linne’s system, and frequently have an amentum, thong or catkin, for a calyx.NWAD ANDROGYNAL.3

    ANDROGYNALLY, adv. With the parts of both sexes.

    ANDROGYNUS, n. A hermaphrodite.

    ANDROID, n. [Gr. man and form.]

    A machine, in the human form, which, by certain springs, performs some of the natural motions of a living man. One of these machines, invented by M. Vaucanson, appeared at Paris is 1738, representing a flute player.NWAD ANDROID.2


    1. A northern constellation, behind Pegasus, Cassiopeia and Perseus, representing the figure of a woman chained. The stars in this constellation, in Ptolemy’s catalogue, are 23; in Tycho’s 22; in Bayer’s 27; in Flamsted’s 84.NWAD ANDROMEDA.2

    2. The name of a celebrated tragedy of Euripides, now lost.NWAD ANDROMEDA.3

    ANDROPHAGI, [Gr. man, and to eat.]

    Man-eaters; but the word is little used, being superseded by anthropophagi, which see. Herodotus mentions people of this character.NWAD ANDROPHAGI.2

    ANEAR, prep. Near.

    ANECDOTE, n. [Gr. to publish, part, given out.]

    In its original sense, secret history, or facts not generally known. But in more common usage, a particular or detached incident or fact of an interesting nature; a biographical incident; a single passage of private life. Procopius gave the title of anecdotes to a book he published against Justinian and his wife Theodora; and similar collections of incidents in the lives of eminent men are now common.NWAD ANECDOTE.2

    ANECDOTICAL, a. Pertaining to anecdotes.

    ANELE, v.t. To give extreme unction. [Not used.]

    ANEMOGRAPHY, n. [Gr. wind, and description.] A description of the winds.

    ANEMOLOGY, n. [Gr. wind, and discourse.] The doctrine of winds, or a treatise on the subject.

    ANEMOMETER, n. [Gr. wind, and to measure.] An instrument or machine for measuring the force and velocity of the wind.

    ANEMONE, ANEMONY, n. [Gr. from wind.]

    Wind-flower; a genus of plants of numerous species. Some of the species are cultivated in gardens, of which their double flowers are among the most elegant ornaments.NWAD ANEMONE.2

    Sea Anemone. See Animal-Flower.NWAD ANEMONE.3

    ANEMOSCOPE, n. [Gr. wind, and to view.] A machine which shows the course or velocity of the wind.

    ANENT, prep. About; concerning; over against: a Scottish word. [Gr.]

    ANEURISM, n. [Gr. to dilate, from broad.]

    A preternatural dilatation or rupture of the coats of an artery. This is encysted or diffused. The encysted aneurism is when the coats of the artery being only dilated, the blood is confined to its proper coat. Of this kind is the varicose. The diffused aneurism includes all those in which, from an aperture in the artery, the blood is spread about in the cellular membrane, out of its proper course.NWAD ANEURISM.2

    ANEURISMAL, a. Pertaining to an aneurism.

    ANEW, adv. [a and new.]

    Over again; another time; in a new form; as, to arm anew; to create anew.NWAD ANEW.2

    ANFRACTUOUS, a. [L. anfractus, of amb, about, and fractus, broken. See Break.]

    Winding; full of windings and turnings; written less correctly, anfractuose.NWAD ANFRACTUOUS.2

    ANFRACTUOUSNESS, n. A state of being full of windings and turnings.

    ANGARIATION, n. [L. angario; Gr. to compel; a word of Persian origin.] Compulsion; exertion. [Not used.]

    ANGEIOTOMY, See Angiotomy.

    ANGEL, n. Usually pronounced angel, but most anomalously. [L. angelus; Gr. a messenger, to tell or announce.]

    1. Literally, a messenger; one employed to communicate news or information from one person to another at a distance. But appropriately,NWAD ANGEL.2

    2. A spirit, or a spiritual intelligent being employed by God to communicate his will to man. Hence angels are ministers of God, and ministring spirits. Hebrews 1:7, 14.NWAD ANGEL.3

    3. In a bad sense, an evil spirit; as, the angel of the bottomless pit. Matthew 25:41; 1 Corinthians 6:3; Revelation 9:11.NWAD ANGEL.4

    4. Christ, the mediator and head of the church. Revelation 10:1.NWAD ANGEL.5

    5. A minister of the gospel, who is an embassador of God. Revelation 2; Revelation 3.NWAD ANGEL.6

    6. Any being whom God employs to execute his judgments. Revelation 16.NWAD ANGEL.7

    7. In the style of love, a very beautiful person.NWAD ANGEL.8

    ANGEL, n. A fish found on the coast of Carolina, of the thoracie order and genus Chaetodon. It has a small projecting mouth; the lamens above the gills are armed with cerulean spines; the body, a foot in length, appears as if cut off, and waved, and covered with large green scales.

    ANGEL, n. A gold coin formerly current in England, bearing the figure of an angel. Skinner says, this device was impressed upon it in allusion to an observation of Pope Gregory the Great, who, seeing some beautiful English youths, in the market at Rome, asked who they were; being told they were Angli, English, he replied, they ought rather to be called angeli, angels. This coin had different values under different princes; but is now an imaginary sum or money of account, implying ten shillings sterling.

    ANGEL, a. Resembling angels; angelic; as, angel whiteness.

    ANGEL-AGE, n. The existence or state of angels.

    ANGEL-FISH, n. A species of shark, the squalus squatina. It is from six to eight feet long, with a large head, teeth broad at the base, but slender and sharp above, disposed in five rows, all around the jaws. The fish takes its name from its pectoral fins, which are very large and extend horizontally, like wings when spread. This fish connects the genus of rays, with that of sharks, partaking of the characters of both; but it differs from both in this, that its mouth is placed at the extremity of the head.

    ANGELIC, ANGELICAL, a. [L. angelicus.] Resembling angels; belonging to angels, or partaking of their nature; suiting the nature and dignity of angels.

    ANGELICA, n. A genus of digynian pentanders, containing several species. The common sort is cultivated for medicinal uses. It grows naturally in northern climates, and has large umbels of a globose figure. The roots have a fragrant aromatic smell, and are used in the aromatic tincture. The stalks make an agreeable sweet-meat.

    ANGELICALLY, adv. Like an angel.

    ANGELICALNESS, n. The quality of being angelic; excellence more than human.

    ANGELITES, in Church history, so called from Angelicum in Alexandria, where they held their first meetings, a sect of heretics near the close of the 5th century, who held the persons of the trinity not to be the same, nor to exist by their own nature; but each to be a God existing by participating of a deity common to them all. They are called also Severites, from Severus, their head; and Theodosians, from one Theodosius, whom they made their Pope.

    ANGEL-LIKE, a. Resembling or having the manners of angels.

    ANGELOLOGY, n. A discourse on angels; or the doctrine of angelic beings.

    ANGELOT, n.

    1. An instrument of music, somewhat resembling a lute.NWAD ANGELOT.2

    2. An ancient English coin struck at Paris while under the dominion of England; so called from the figure of an angel supporting the escutcheon of the arms of England and France. Also, a small rich sort of cheese made in Normandy.NWAD ANGELOT.3

    ANGEL-SHOT, n. Chain-shot, being two halves of a cannon ball fastened to the ends of a chain.

    ANGEL-WINGED, a. Winged like angels.

    Larger font
    Smaller font