Noah Webster’s 1828 Dictionary
W - WALLER
W is the twenty third letter of the English Alphabet. It takes its written form and its name from the union of two Vs, this being the form of the Roman capital letter which we call U. The name, double u, being given to it from its form or composition, and not from its sound, especially the vowels. W is properly a vowel, a simple sound, formed by opening the mouth with a close circular configuration of the lips. it is precisely the ou of the French, and the u of the Spaniards, Italians and Germans. With the oter vowels it forms diphthongs, which are of easy pronunciation; as in well, want, will, dwell; pronouced ooell, ooant, ooill, dooell. In English, it is always followed by another vowel, except when followed by h, as is when; but this case is an exception only in writing, and not in pronunciation, for h precedes w in utterance; when being pronounced hooen. In Welsh, w, which is sounded as in English is used without another vowel, as in fwl, a fool; dwn, dun; dwb, mortar; gwn, a gun, and a gown.
It is not improbable that the Romans pronouced v as we do w, for their volvo is our wallow; and volo, velle, is the English will, G. wollen. But this is uncertain. The German v has the sound of the English f, and w that of the English v.
W, at the end of words is often silent after a and o, as in law, saw, low, sow. In many words of this kind, w represents the Saxon g; in other cases, it helps to form a diphthong, as in now, vow, new, strew.
WABBLE, v.i. To move from one side to the other; to vacillate; as a turning or whirling body. So it is said a top wabbles, when it is in motion, and deviates from a perpendicular direction; a spindle wabbles, when it moves one way and the other. [This word is applied chiefly to bodies when turning with a circular motion, and its place canot be supplied by any other word in the language. It is neither low nor barbarous.]
WACKE, WACKY, n. A rock nearly allied to basalt, of which it may be regarded as a more soft and earthy variety. Its color is a greenish gray, brown or black. It is opake, yields easily to the knife, and has a greasy feel. Its principal ingredient is silex. Gray wacky is a different species of rock, being a kind of sandstone. Wacky is a mineral sunstance intermediate between clay and basalt.
1. A little mass of some soft or flexible material, such as hay, straw, tow, paper, or old ropeyarn, used for stopping the charge of powder in a gun and pressing it close to the shot, or for keeping the powder and shot close.
2. A little mass, tuft or bundle, as of hay or peas.
WAD, WADD, n. In mineralogy, a black wadd is a species of ore of manganese, of which there are four kinds; fibrous, ochery, pulverulent ochery, and dendritic. In some places, plumbago or black lead is called wad or wadd.
WADDED, a. Formed into a wad or mass.
1. A wad, or the materials for wads; any pliable substance of which wads may be made.
2. A kind of soft stuff of loose texture, used for stuffing garments.
1. To move one way and the other in walking; to deviate to one side and the other; to vacillate; as, a child waddles when he begins to walk; very fat peole walk with a kind of waddling pace. So we say, a duck or a goose waddles.
2. To walk with a waddling motion.
And hardly waddles forth to cool
WADDLING, ppr. Moving from side to side in walking.
WADDLINGLY, adv. With a vacillating gait.
1. To walk through any substance that yields to the feet; as, to wade through water; to wade through sand or snow;. To wade over a river, is to walk through on the bottom. Fowls that wade have long legs.
2. To move or pass with difficulty or labor; as, judges wade through an intriccate law case. it is not my purpose to wade through these controversies.
The kings admirable conduct has waded through all these difficulties.
And wades through fumes and gropes his way.
WADE, v.t. To pass by walking on the bottom; as, to wade a river. [this is a common expression, but elliptical for to wade through a river.]
WADING, ppr. Walking through a substance that yields to the feet, as through water or sand.
WADSETT, n. An ancient tenure or lease of land in the highlands of Scotland, which seems to have been a kind of mortgage.
WADSETTER, n. One who holds by wadsett.
1. A thin cake or leaf; as a wafer of bread given by the Romanists in the Eucharist.
2. A thin leaf of paste, or a composition of flour, the white of eggs, isinglass and yeast, spread over with gumwater and dried; used in sealing letters.
WAFER, v.t. To seal or close with a wafer.
1. To bear through a fluid or bouyant medium; to convey through water or air; as, a balloon was wafted over the channel.
Speed the soft intercourse from soul to soul, and waft a sigh from Indus to the pole.
2. To convey; as ships.
3. To bouy; to cause to float; to keep from sinking.
4. To beckon; to give notice by something in motion. [Not in use.]
[This verb is regular. But waft was formerly used by some writers for wafted.]
WAFT, v.i. To float; to be moved or to pass in a bouyant medium.
And now the shouts waft near the citadel.
WAFT, n. A floating body; also, a signal displayed from a ships stern, by hoisting an ensign furled in a roll, to the head of the staff.
WAFTAGE, n. Conveyance or transportation through a bouyant medium, as air or water. [Not in use.]
WAFTED, pp. Borne or conveyed through air or water.
1. He or that which wafts; a passage boat.
2. The conductor of vessels at sea; an old word.
WAFTING, ppr. Carrying through a bouyant medium.
WAFTURE, n. The act of waving. [Not in use.]
WAG, v.t. To move one way and the other with quick turns; to move a little way, and then turn the other way; as, to wag the head.
Every one that passeth thereby shall be astonished, and wag his head. Jeremiah 18:16; Matthew 27:39. [Wag expresses particulary the motion of the head and body used in buffoonery, mirth, derision, sport and mockery. It is applied also to birds and beasts; as, to wag the tail.]
1. To be quick in ludicrous motion; to stir.
Tis merry in hall, where beards wag all.
Tremble and start at wagging of a straw.
2. To go; to depart; to pack offf.
I will provoke him tot, or let him wag.
3. To be moved one way and the other.
The resty sieve waggd neer the more.
WAG, n. A droll; a man full of low sport and humor; a ludicrous fellow.
We wink at wags, when they offend.
The counselor never pleaded without a piece of packthread in his hand, which he used to twist about his finger all the while he was speaking; the wags used to call it the thread of his discourse.
1. To lay; to bet; to throw down as a pledge; to stake; to put at hazard on the event of a contest. Thisis the common popular sense of the word in New England; as, to wage a dollar; to wage a horse.
2. To venture; to hazard.
To wake and wage a danger profitless.
3. To make; to begin; to carry on; that is, to go forward or advance to attack, as in invasion or aggression; used in the phrase, to wage war. he waged war with all his enemies.
He ponderd which of all his sons was fit
To reign, and wage immortal war with wit.
4. To set to hire.
Thou must wage Thy works for wealth. [Not in use.]
5. To take to hire; to hire for pay; to employ for wages; as eaged soldiers. He was well waged and rewarded.
To wage oness law, to give security to make ones law. The defendent is then to swear that he owes nothing to the plaintiff, and eleven neighbors, called compurgators, are to avow upon their oaths, that they believe in their consciences he has declared the truth. This is called wager of law.
WAGED, pp. laid; deposited; as a pledge; made or gegun, as war.
1. Something deposited, laid or hazarded on the event of a contest or some unsettled question; a bet.
Besides these plates for horseraces, the wagers may be as the persons please.
If any atheist can stake his soul for a wager against such an inexhaustible disproportion
2. Subject on which bets are laid.
3. In law, an offer to make oath of innocence or nonindebtedness; or the act of making oath, together with the oaths of eleven compurgators, to fortify the defendents oath.
Wager of battle, is when the tenant in a writ of right, offers to prove his right by the body of his champion, and throwing down his glove as a gage or pledge, thus wages or stipulates battle with the champion or demandant, who by taking up the glove, accepts the challenge. The champions, armed with batons enter the list, and taking each other by the hand, each swears to the justice of the cause of the party for whom he appears; they then fight till the stars appear, and if the champion of the tenant can defend himself till that time, his cause prevails.
WAGER, v.t. To lay; to bet; to hazard on the issue of a contest; or on some question that is to be decided, or on some casualty.
WAGERED, pp. Laid; pledged; as a bet.
WAGERER, n. One who wagers or lays a bet.
WAGERING, ppr. Laying; betting.
Wagering policy, in commerce, a policy of insurance, insuring a sum of money when no property is at hazard; as a policy to insure money on a ship when no property is on board; that is, insurance, interest or no interest; or a wagering policy may be a policy to insure property that is already insured. Such policies in England, are by Statute 19 Geo. 3. made null and void.
WAGES, n. plural in termination, but singular in signification.
1. Hire; reward; that which is paid or stipulated for services; but chiefly for services by manual labor, or for military and naval services. We speak of servants wages, a laborers wages, or soldiers wages; but we never apply the word to the rewards given to men in office, which are called fees or salary. The word is however sometimes applied to the compensation given to representatives in the legislature. [U. States]
Tell me, what shall thy wages be? Genesis 29:15.
Be content with your wages. Luke 3:14.
2. Reward; fruit; recompense; that which is given or received in return.
The wages of sin is death. Romans 6:23.
1. A name given in Cornwall to the martinazzo, dunghunter, or dungbird, a species of Larus or seagull.
1. Mischievous merriment; sportive trick or gayety; sarcasm in good humor; frolicksome; as a company of waggish boys.
2. Done, made or laid in waggery or for sport; as a waggish trick.
WAGGISHLY, adv. In a waggish manner; in sport.
WAGGISHNESS, n. Mischievous sport; wanton merriment.
WAGGLE, v.i. To waddle; to reel or move from side to side.
Why do you go nodding and waggling so?
WAGGLE, v.t. To move one way and the other; as, a bird waggles its tail.
1. A vehicle moved on four wheels, and usually drawn by horses; used for the transportation of heavy commodities. In America, light wagons are used for the conveyance of families, and for carrying light commodities to market, particulary a very light kind drawn by one horse.
2. A chariot. [Not in use.]
WAGON, v.t. To transport in a wagon. Goods are wagoned from London to the interior.
WAGON, v.i. To practice the transportation of goods in a wagon. The man wagons between Philadelphia and Pittsburg.
WAGONAGE, n. Money paid for carriage in a wagon.
1. One who conducts a wagon.
2. A constellation, Charles wain.
WAGONING, ppr. Transporting in a wagon.
WAGONING, n. The business of transporting in a wagon.
WAGTAIL, n. [wag and tail.] A small bird, a species of Motacilla.
WAID, a. Crushed. [Not in use.]
WAIF, n. Goods found, of which the owner is not known. These were originally such goods as a thief, when pursued, threw away to prevent being apprehended. They belong to the king, unless the owner makes fresh suit of the felon, takes him and brings him to justice.
WAIL, v.t. To lament; to moan; to bewail.
Or if no more her absent lord she wails--
WAIL, v.i. To weep; to express sorrow audibly.
Therefore I will wail and howl. Micah 1:8.
WAIL, n. Loud weeping; violent lamentation.
WAILFUL, a. Sorrowful; mournful.
WAILING, ppr. Lamenting with audible cries.
WAILING, n. Loud cries of sorrow; deep lamentation.
There shall be wailing and gnashing of teeth. Matthew 13:42.
WAILMENT, n. Lamentation.
1. A wagon; a carriage for the transportation of goods on wheels.
2. A constellation, Charles wain.
WAINAGE, n. A finding of carriages.
WAIN-BOTE, n. Timber for wagons for carts.
WAIN-HOUSE, n. A house or shed for wagons and carts. [Local.]
WAIN-ROPE, n. A rope for binding a load on a wagon; a cart-rope.
WAINSCOT, n. In building, timber-work serving to line the walls of a room, being made in panels.
1. To line with boards; as, to wainscot a hall.
Music sounds better in chambers wainscoted than hanged.
2. To line with different materials.
The other is wainscoted with looking-glass.
WAINSCOTED, pp. Lined with boards or panels.
WAINSCOTING, ppr. Lining with boards.
WAIR, n. A piece of timber two yards long, and a foot broad. [I know not where used.]
1. That part of the human body which is immediately below the ribs or thorax; or the small part of the body between the thorax and hips.
2. That part of a ship which is between the quarter deck and forecastle. But in many ships now built, there is no quarter deck, and in such the waist is the middle part of the ship.
WAISTBAND, n. The band or upper pat of breeches, trousers or pantaloons, which encompasses the waist.
WAISTCLOTHS, n. Coverings of canvas or tarpauling for the hammocks, stowed on the gangways, between the quarter deck and forecastle.
WAISTCOAT, n. [waist and coat.] A short coat or garment for men, extending no lower than the hips, and covering the waist; a vest. This under garment is now generally called in America a vest.
WAISTER, n. In ships, waisters are men who are stationed in the waist in working the ship.
WAIT, v.i. [The sense is to stop, or to continue.]
1. To stay or rest in expectation; to stop or remain stationary, till the arrival of some person or event. Thus we say, I went to the place of meeting, and there waited an hour for the moderator or chairman. I will go to the hotel, and there wait till you come. We will wait for the mail.
2. To stay proceedings, or suspend any business, in expectation of some person, event, or the arrival of some hour. The court was obliged to wait for a witness.
3. To rest in expectation and patience.
All the days of my appointed time will I wait, till my change come. Job 14:14.
4. To stay; not to depart.
Haste, my dear father, tis no time to wait.
5. To stay; to continue by reason of hindrance.
6. To lie in ambush, as an enemy.
Such ambush waited to intercept thy way.
To wait on or upon, to attend, as a servant; to perform menial services for; as, to wait on a gentleman; to wait on the table.
To wait on,
1. To attend; to go to see; to visit on business or for ceremony. Tell the gentleman I will wait on him at ten o’clock.
2. To pay servile or submissive attendance.
3. To follow, as a consequence; as the ruin that waits on such a supine temper. [Instead of this, we use await.]
4. To look watchfully.
It is a point of cunning to wait on him with whom you speak, with your eye. [Unusual.]
5. To attend to; to perform.
To wait at, to attend in service; to perform service at. 1 Corinthians 9:13.
To wait for, to watch, as an enemy. Job 15:22.
1. To stay for; to rest or remain stationary in expectation of the arrival of.
Awd with these words, in camps they still abide, and wait with longing eyes their promisd guide. [Elliptical for wait for.]
2. To attend; to accompany with submission or respect.
He chose a thousand horse, the flowr of all his warlike troops, to wait the funeral. [This use is not justifiable, but by poetical license.]
3. To attend as a consequence of something.
Such doom waits luxury--
[Not in use. In this sense we use attend or attend on.]
WAIT, n. Ambush. As a noun, this word is used only in certain phrases. To lie in wait, is to lie in ambush; to be secreted in order to fall by surprise on an enemy; hence figuratively, to lay snares, or to make insidious attempts, or to watch for the purpose of ensnaring. Joshua 8:4.
In wait, is used in a like sense by Milton.
To lay wait, to set an ambush. Jeremiah 9:8.
1. One who waits; an attendant; a servant in attendance.
The waiters stand in ranks; the yeoman cry, make room, as if a duke were passing by.
2. A server; a vessel on which tea furniture, etc. is carried.
WAITING, ppr. Staying in expectation.
Waiting on, attending; accompanying; serving.
Waiting for, staying for the arrival of.
Waiting at, staying or attending at in expectation or in service.
In waiting, in attendance.
WAITING-MAID, WAITING-WOMAN, n. An upper servant who attends a lady. Waiting-gentlewoman is sometimes, though less commonly used.
1. Itinerant nocturnal musicians. [Not in use.]
2. Nocturnal musicians who attended great men.
WAIVE, n. A woman put out of the protection of the law.
WAIWODE, n. In the Turkish empire, the governor of a small province or town; a general.
WAKE, v.i. [G. The primary sense is to stir, to rouse, to excite.]
1. To be awake; to continue awake; to watch; not to sleep. Psalm 127:1.
The father waketh for the daughter.
Though wisdom wakes, suspicion sleeps.
I cannot think any time, waking or sleeping, without being sensible of it.
2. To be excited or roused from sleep; to awake; to be awakened. He wakes at the slightest noise.
3. To cease to sleep; to awake.
4. To be quick; to be alive or active.
5. To be excited from a torpid state; to be put in motion. The dormant powers of nature wake from their frosty slumbers.
Gentle airs to fan the earth now wakd.
1. To rouse from sleep.
The angel that talked with me, came again and waked me. Zechariah 4:1.
2. To arouse; to excite; to put in motion or action.
Prepare war, wake up the mighty men. Joel 3:9.
[The use of up is common, but not necessary.]
To wake the soul by tender strokes of art.
3. To bring to life again, as if from the sleep of death.
To second life wakd in the renovation of the just.
1. The feast of the dedication of the church, formerly kept by watching all night.
2. Vigils; state of forbearing sleep.
--Their merry wakes and pastimes keep.
3. Act of waking. [Old song.]
Wake of a ship, the track it leaves in the water, formed by the meeting of the water, which rushes from each side to fill the space which the ship makes in passing through it.
To be in the wake of a ship, is to be in her track, or in a line with her keel.
1. Not sleeping; indisposed to sleep.
Dissembling sleep, but wakeful with the fright--
2. Watchful; vigilant.
WAKEFULLY, adv. With watching or sleeplessness.
1. Indisposition to sleep.
2. Forbearance of sleep; want of sleep.
WAKEN, v.i. wakn. To wake; to cease to sleep; to be awakened.
Early Turnus wakning with the light.
WAKEN, v.t. wakn.
1. To excite or rouse from sleep.
Go, waken Eve.
2. To excite to action or motion.
Then Homers and Tyraeus martial muse wakend the world.
3. To excite; to produce; to rouse into action.
They introduce their sacred song, and waken raptures high.
WAKENED, pp. Roused from sleep; excited into action.
WAKENER, n. One who rouses from sleep.
WAKENING, ppr. Rousing form sleep or stupidity; calling into action.
WAKER, n. One who watches; one who rouses from sleep.
WAKE-ROBIN, n. A plant of the genus Arum.
1. Being awake; not sleeping.
2. Rousing from sleep; exciting into motion or action.
1. The period of being awake.
1. In cloth, a ridge or streak rising above the rest. We say, cloth is wove with a wale.
2. A streak or stripe; the mark of a rod or whip on animal flesh.
Wales of a ship, an assemblage of strong planks, extending along a ships sides throughout the whole length, at different heights, and serving to strengthen the decks and form the curves. They are distinguished into the main wale and the channel wale.
WALE-KNOT, WALL-KNOT, n. A single wale-knot is made by untwisting the ends of a rope, and making a bight with the first strand; then passing the second over the end of the first, and the third over the end of the second, and through the bight of the first. The double is made by passing the ends, singly, close underneath the first wale, and thrusting them upwards through the middle, only the last end comes up under two bights.
WALK, v.i. [G., to full, to felt hats; a fuller; to stir, to be agitated, to rove, to travel, to wander, to roll. Our ancestors appropriated the verb to moving on the feet, and the word is peculiarly expressive of that rolling or wagging motion which marks the walk of clownish people.]
1. To move slowly on the feet; to step slowly along; to advance by steps moderately repeated; as animals. Walking in men differs from running only in the rapidity and length of the steps; but in quadrupeds, the motion or order of the feet is sometimes changed.
At the end of twelve months, he walked in the palace of the kingdom of Babylon. Daniel 4:29.
When Peter had come down out of the ship, he walked on the water, to go to Jesus. Matthew 14:29.
2. To move or go on the feet for exercise or amusement. Hundreds of students daily walk on Downing terrace in Cambridge.
3. To appear, as a specter.
The spirits of the dead may walk again.
4. To act on any occasion.
Do you think Id walk in any plot?
5. To be in motion, as a clamorous tongue.
Her tongue did walk in foul reproach.
6. To act or move on the feet in sleep.
When was it she last walkd? [But this is unusual. When we speak of noctambulation, we say, to walk in sleep.]
7. To range; to be stirring.
Affairs that walk, as they say spirits do at midnight. [Unusual.]
8. To move off; to depart.
When he comes forth he will make their cows and garrans walk. [Not elegant.]
9. In Scripture, to live and act or behave; to pursue a particular course of life.
To walk with God, to live in obedience to his commands, and have communion with him. Genesis 5:24.
To walk in darkness, to live in ignorance, error and sin, without comfort. 1 John 1:6.
To walk in the light, to live in the practice of religion, and to enjoy its consolations. 1 John 1:7.
To walk by faith, to live in the firm belief of the gospel and its promises, and to rely on Christ for salvation. 2 Corinthians 5:7.
To walk through the fire, to be exercised with severe afflictions. Isaiah 43:2.
To walk after the flesh, to indulge sensual appetites, and to live in sin. Romans 8:1.
To walk after the Spirit, to be guided by the counsels and influences of the Spirit and by the word of God, and to live a life of holy deportment.
To walk in the flesh, to live this natural life, which is subject to infirmities and calamities. 2 Corinthians 10:3.
To walk in, to enter, as a house. Walk in, gentlemen.
WALK, v.t. wauk.
1. To pass through or upon; as, to walk the streets. [This is elliptical for to walk in or through the street.]
2. To cause to walk or step slowly; to lead, drive or ride with a slow pace. He found the road so bad he was obliged to walk his horse. The coachman walked his horses from Woodbridge to Princeton.
WALK, n. Wauk.
1. The act of walking; the act of moving on the feet with a slow pace.
2. The act of walking for air or exercise; as a morning walk; an evening walk.
3. Manner of walking; gait; step. We often know a person in a distant apartment by his walk.
4. Length of way or circuit through which one walks; or a place for walking; as a long walk; a short walk. The gardens of the Tuilerie and of the Luxemburgh are very pleasant walks.
5. An avenue set with trees.
6. Way; road; range; place of wandering.
The mountains are his walks.
The starry walks above.
7. Region; space.
He opened a boundless walk for his imagination.
8. Course of life or pursuit. This is not within the walk of the historian.
9. The slowest pace of a horse, ox or other quadruped.
10. A fish. [A mistake for whelk.]
11. In the West Indies, a plantation of canes, etc.
A sheep walk, so called, is high and dry land where sheep pasture.
WALKABLE, a. Waukable. Fit to be walked on. [Not much used.]
WALKER, n. Wauker.
1. One who walks.
2. In our mother tongue, a fuller.
3. In law, a forest officer appointed to walk over a certain space for inspection; a forester.
4. One who deports himself in a particular manner.
5. A fulling-mill. [Not in use or local.]
WALKING, ppr. Wauking. Moving on the legs with a slow pace; moving; conducting ones self.
WALKING, n. Wauking. The act of moving on the feet with a slow pace.
WALKING-STAFF, WALKING-STICK, n. A staff or stick carried in the hand for support or amusement in walking.
WALK-MILL, n. Wauk-mill. A fulling mill. [Local.]
WALL, n. [L., stake, post, probably originally a fence of stakes, a palisade or stockade; the first rude fortification of uncivilized men.]
1. A work or structure of stone, brick or other materials, raised to some highth, and intended for a defense or security. Walls of stone, with or without cement, are much used in America for fences on farms; walls are laid as the foundations of houses and the security of cellars. Walls of stone or brick form the exterior of buildings, and they are often raised round cities and forts as a defense against enemies.
2. Walls, in the plural, is used for fortifications in general; works for defense.
I rush undaunted to defend the walls.
3. A defense; means of security or protection. 1 Samuel 25:16.
To take the wall, to take the upper or most honorable place.
I will take the wall of any man or maid of Montagues.
1. To inclose with a wall; as, to wall a city.
2. To defend by walls.
And terror of his name that walls us in from danger.
3. To fill up with a wall.
WALL-CREEPER, n. A small bird of the genus Certhia; the spider-catcher.
WALL-CRESS, n. [wall and cress.]
1. A plant of the genus Arabis.
2. A plant of the genus Turritis.
WALL-EYE, n. [wall and eye.]
1. A disease in the crystaline humor of the eye; the glaucoma.
2. In horses, an eye in which the iris is of a very light gray color.