Noah Webster’s 1828 Dictionary



ADORABLY, adv. In a manner worthy of adoration.


1. The act of paying honors to a divine being; the worship paid to God; the act of addressing as a God.

Adoration consists in external homage, accompanied with the highest reverence. It is used for the act of praying, or preferring requests or thanksgiving, to the Supreme Being.

2. Homage paid to one in high esteem; profound reverence.

Adoration, among the Jews, as performed by bowing, kneeling and prostration. Among the Romans, the devotee, with his head uncovered, applied his right hand to his lips, bowing and turning himself from left to right. The Persians fell on the face, striking the forehead against the earth, and kissing the ground. The adoration paid to the Grecian and Roman emperors, consisted in bowing and kneeling at the feet of the prince, laying hold of his robe, then withdrawing the hand and clapping it to the lips. In modern times, adoration is paid to the pope by kissing his feet, and to princes, by kneeling and kissing the hand. This word was used by the Romans for acclamation or great applause, given to public performer; and the election of a pope is sometimes by adoration, that is, by sudden acclamation without scrutiny.

ADORE, v.t. [L. adoro. In Heb. to honor, reverence or glorify to adorn; to be magnificent or glorious, to magnify, to glorify. This word is usually referred to the Latin ad orare, to carry to one’s mouth; ad and os, oris; as, in order to kiss one’s hand, the hand is carried to one’s mouth. See Calmet, ad verbum, who cites, in confirmation of this opinion, the ancient practice of kissing the hand. See Job 31:27; 1 Kings 19:18; Psalm 2:12; Genesis 41:40. Ainsworth supposes the word to be a compound of ad and oro, to pray; and if the word is compound, as I suspect, this opinion is most probably correct.]

1. To worship with profound reverence; to address with exalted thoughts, by prayer and thanksgiving; to pay divine honors to; to honor as a god or as divine.

2. To love in the highest degree; to regard with the utmost esteem, affection and respect; as, the people adore their prince.

ADORED, pp. Worshipped as divine; highly reverenced; greatly beloved.

ADORER, n. One who worships, or honors as divine; in popular language, an admiring lover.

ADORING, ppr. or a. Honoring or addressing as divine; regarding with great love or reverence.

ADORN, v.t. [L. adorno, ad and orno, to deck, or beautify, to dress, set off, extol, furnish.]

1. To deck or decorate; to make beautiful; to add to beauty by dress; to deck with external ornaments.

A bride adorneth, herself with jewels. Isaiah 61:10.

To set off to advantage; to add ornaments to; to embellish by any thing external or adventitious; as, to adorn a speech by appropriate action, sentiments with elegance of language, or a gallery with pictures.

3. To make pleasing, or more pleasing; as, great abilities adorned by virtue or affability.

4. To display the beauty or excellence of; as, to adorn the doctrine of God. Titus 2:10.

ADORN, n. Ornament. Obs.
ADORN, a. Adorned; decorated. Obs.

ADORNED, pp. Decked; decorated; embellished.

ADORNING, ppr. Ornamenting; decorating; displaying beauty.

ADORNING, n. Ornament; decoration. 1 Peter 3:3, 5.

ADOSCULATION, n. [L. ad and osculatio, a kissing, from osculum, a kiss, or mouth.]

The impregnation of plants by the falling of the farina on the pistils.

Adosculation is also defined to be the inserting of one part of a plant into another.


In heraldry, denoting two figures or bearings place back to back.

ADOWN, prep. [a and down.] From a higher to a lower situation; downwards; implying descent.

ADOWN, adv. Down; on the ground; at the bottom.

ADREAD, a. Adred’. [See Dread.] Affected by dread. Obs.

ADRIATIC, a. [L. Aldria, or Hadria, the gulf of Venice.]

Pertaining to the Gulf, called, from Venice, the Venetian Gulf.

ADRIATIC, n. The Venetian Gulf; a Gulf that washes the eastern side of Italy.

ADRIFT, a. or adv. [See Drive. Adrift is the participle of the verb.]

Literally, driven; floating; floating at random; impelled or moving without direction. As an adjective, it always follows its noun; as, the boat was adrift.

ADROGATION, n. [L. ad and rogo, to ask. See Interrogate and Rogation.]

A species of adoption in ancient Rome, by which a person, capable of choosing for himself, was admitted into the relation of a son. So called from the questions put to the parties.

ADROIT, [L. directus, dirigo. See Right.]

Dextrous; skillful; active in the use of the hands, and figuratively, in the exercise of the mental faculties; ingenious; ready in invention or execution.

ADROITLY, adv. With dexterity; in a ready skillful manner.

ADROITNESS, n. Dexterity; readiness in the use of the limbs, or of the mental faculties.

ADRY, a.

Thirsty, in want of drink. [This adjective always follows the noun.]

ADSCITITIOUS, a. [L. ascititius, from adscisco, ascisco, to add or join.]

Added; taken as supplemental; additional; not requisite.

ADSCITITIOUS, n. [L. adstrictio, astrictio, of ad and stringo, to strain or bind fast. See Strict.]

A binding fast. Among physicians, the rigidity of a part of the body, occasioning a retention of usual evacuations; costiveness; a closeness of the emunctories; also the styptic effects of medicines.


ADULARIA, n. [From Adula, the summit of a Swiss mountain.]

A mineral deemed the most perfect variety of felspar; its color white, or with a tinge of green, yellow, or red.

ADULATION, n. [L. adulatio.]

Servile flattery; praise in excess, or beyond what is merited; high compliment.

ADULATOR, n. A flatterer; one who offers praise servilely.

ADULATORY, a. Flattering; containing excessive praise or compliments; servilely praising; as, an adulatory address.

ADULATRESS, n. A female that flatters with servility.

ADULT, n. [L. adultus, grown to maturity, from oleo, to grow; Heb. to ascend.]

Having arrived at mature years, or to full size and strength; as an adult person or plant.

ADULT, n. A person grown to full size and strength, or to the years of manhood. It is also applied to full grown plants. among civilians, a person between fourteen and twenty-five years of age.

ADULTERANT, n. The person or thing that adulterates.

ADULTERATE, v.t. [L. adultero, from adulter, mixed, or an adulterer; ad and alter, other.]

To corrupt, debase, or make impure by an admixture of baser materials; as, to adulterate liquors, or the coin of a country.

ADULTERATE, v.i. To commit adultery. Obs.
ADULTERATE, a. Tainted with adultery; debased by foreign mixture.

ADULTERATED, pp. Corrupted; debased by a mixture with something of less value.

ADULTERATENESS, n. The quality or state of being debased or counterfeit.

ADULTERATING, ppr. Debasing; corrupting; counterfeiting.

ADULTERATION, n. The act of adulterating, or the state of being adulterated, corrupted or debased by foreign mixture.

The adulteration of liquors, of drugs, and even of bread and beer, is common, but a scandalous crime.

ADULTERER, n. [L. adulter.]

1. A man guilty of adultery; a man who has sexual commerce with any married woman, except his wife. [See Adultery.]

2. In scripture, an idolator. Ezekiel 23:37.

3. An apostate from the true faith, or one who violates his covenant engagements; a very wicked person. Jeremiah 9:2; Jeremiah 23:10.

4. One devoted to earthly things. James 4:4.

ADULTERESS, n. A married woman guilty of incontinence.

ADULTERINE, a. Proceeding from adulterous commerce; spurious.

ADULTERINE, n. In the civil law, a child issuing from an adulterous connection.


1. Guilty of adultery; pertaining to adultery.

2. In scripture, idolatrous, very wicked. Matthew 12:39; Matthew 16:4; Mark 8:38.

ADULTERY, n. [L. adulterium. See Adulterate.]

1. Violation of the marriage bed; a crime, or a civil injury, which introduces, or may introduce, into a family, a spurious offspring.

By the laws of Connecticut, the sexual intercourse of any man, with a married woman, is the crime of adultery in both: such intercourse of a married man, with an unmarried woman, is fornication in both, and adultery of the man, within the meaning of the law respecting divorce; but not a felonious adultery in either, or the crime of adultery at common law, or by statute. This latter offense is, in England, proceeded with only in the ecclesiastical courts.

In common usage, adultery means the unfaithfulness of any married person to the marriage bed. In England, Parliament grant absolute divorces for infidelity to the marriage bed in either party; and the spiritual courts divorce a mensa et thoro.

2. In a scriptural sense, all manner of lewdness or unchastity, as in the seventh commandment.

3. In scripture, idolatry, or apostasy from the true God. Jeremiah 3:8, 9.

4. In old laws, the fine and penalty imposed for the offense of adultery.

5. In ecclesiastical affairs, the intrusion of a person into a bishopric, during the life of the bishop.

6. Among ancient naturalists, the grafting of trees was called adultery, being considered as an unnatural union.

ADULTNESS, n. The state of being adult.

ADUMBRANT, a. [See Adumbrate.] Giving a faint shadow, or slight resemblance.

ADUMBRATE, v.t. [L. adumbro, to shade, from umbra, a shade.]

To give a faint shadow, or slight likeness; to exhibit a faint resemblance, like a shadow.


1. The act of making a shadow or faint resemblance.

2. A faint sketch; an imperfect representation of a thing.

3. In heraldry, the shadow only of a figure, outlined, and painted of a color darker than the field.

ADUNATION, n. [L. ad and unus, unio.]

The state of being united; union. [Not used.]

ADUNCITY, n. [L. aduncitas, hookedness, of ad and uncus, a hook.]

Hookedness; a bending in form of a hook.

ADUNCOUS, a. [L. aduncus.]

Hooked; bent or made in the form of a hook.

ADUNQUE, a. Adunk’. Hooked. [Not used.]

ADURE, v.t. [L. aduro, ad and uro, to burn.]

To burn up. [Not used.]

ADUST, a. [L. adustus, burnt, the participle of aduro, to burn.]

Burnt; scorched; become dry by heat; hot and fiery.

ADUSTED, a. Become hot and dry; burnt; scorched.

ADUSTION, n. The act of burning, scorching, or heating to dryness; a state of being thus heated or dried.

ADVANCE, v.t. adv’ans. [Heb. surface, face; whence.]

1. To bring forward; to move further in front. Hence,

2. To promote; to raise to a higher rank; as, to advance one from the bar to the bench.

3. To improve or make better, which is considered as a progression or moving forward; as, to advance one’s true interests.

4. To forward; to accelerate growth; as, to advance the growth of plants.

5. To offer or propose; to bring to view or notice; as, to advance an opinion or an argument.

6. In commerce, to supply beforehand; to furnish on credit, or before goods are delivered, or work done; or to furnish as a part of a stock or fund; as, to advance money on loan or contract, or towards a purchase or establishment.

7. To furnish for others; to supply or pay for others, in expectation of reimbursement.

They advanced the money out of their own funds, and took the sheriff’s deeds in their own name.

8. To raise; to enhance; as, to advance the price of goods.


1. To move or go forward; to proceed; as, the troops advanced.

2. To improve, or make progress; to grow better, greater, wiser or older; as, to advance in knowledge, in stature, in wisdom, or in years.

3. To rise in rank, office, or consequence; to be preferred, or promoted; as, to advance in political standing.


1. A moving forward, or towards the front.

2. Gradual progression; improvement; as, an advance in religion or knowledge.

3. Advancement; promotion; preferment; as, an advance in rank or office.

4. First hint by way of invitation; first step towards an agreement; as, A made an advance towards a reconciliation with B. In this sense, it is very frequently used in the plural.

The amours of an empress require the plainest advances.

5. In trade, additional price; profit; as, an advance on the prime cost of goods.

6. A giving beforehand; a furnishing of something, on contract, before an equivalent is received, as money or goods, towards a capital or stock, or on loan; or the money or goods thus furnished; as, A made large advances to B.

7. A furnishing of money or goods for others, in expectation of reimbursement; or the property so furnished.

I shall, with great pleasure, make the necessary advances.

The account was made up with intent to show what advances had been made.

In advance, in front; before; also beforehand; before an equivalent is received, or when one partner in trade has furnished more than his proportion; as, A is in advance to B a thousand dollars or pounds.

ADVANCED, pp. Moved forward; promoted; improved; furnished beforehand; situated in front, or before the rest; also old, having reached the decline of life; as, advanced in years; an advanced age.


1. The act of moving forward or proceeding.

2. The state of being advanced; preferment; promotion, in rank or excellence; the act of promoting.

3. Settlement on a wife, or jointure.

4. Provision made by a parent for a child, by gift of property, during his, the parent’s life, to which the child would be entitled as heir, after his parent’s death.

ADVANCER, n. One who advances; a promoter.

Among sportsmen, a start or branch of a buck’s attire, between the back antler and the palm.

ADVANCING, ppr. Moving forward; proceeding; promoting; raising to higher rank or excellence; improving; supplying beforehand, as on loan, or as stock in trade.

ADVANCIVE, a. Tending to advance, or promote.


1. Any state, condition, or circumstance, favorable to success, prosperity, interest, or reputation.

The enemy had the advantage of elevated ground.

2. Benefit; gain; profit.

What advantage will it be to thee? Job 35:3.

There exists, in the economy and course of nature, an indissoluble union between virtue and happiness; between duty and advantage.

3. Means to an end; opportunity; convenience for obtaining benefit; as, student enjoy great advantages for improvement.

The General took advantage of his enemy’s negligence.

4. Favorable state or circumstances; as, jewels set to advantage.

5. Superiority, or prevalence over; with of or over.

Lest Satan should get an advantage of us, (or over us.) 2 Corinthians 2:11.

6. Superiority, or that which gives it; as, the advantage of a good constitution.

7. Interest; increase; overplus.

And with advantage means to pay thy love. Obs.

8. Additional circumstance to give preponderation.


1. To benefit; as to yield profit or gain.

What is a man advantaged, if he gain the whole world, and lose himself, or be cast away? Luke 9:25.

2. To promote; to advance the interest of.

ADVANTAGEABLE, a. Profitable; convenient; gainful. [Little used.]

ADVANTAGED, pp. Benefitted; promoted.

ADVANTAGE-GROUND, n. Ground that gives advantage or superiority; a state that gives superior advantages for annoyance or resistance.

ADVANTAGEOUS, a. Being of advantage; furnishing convenience, or opportunity to gain benefit; gainful; profitable; useful; beneficial; as, an advantageous position of the troops; trade is advantageous to a nation.

ADVANTAGEOUSLY, adv. In an advantageous manner; profitably; usefully; conveniently.

ADVANTAGEOUSNESS, n. The quality or state of being advantageous; profitableness; usefulness; convenience.

ADVANTAGING, ppr. Profiting; benefiting.

ADVENE, v.i. [L. advenio, to come to, ad and venio.]

To accede, or come to; to be added to, or become a part of, though not essential. [Little used.]

ADVENIENT, a. Advening; coming from outward causes.

ADVENT, n. [L. adventus, from advenio, of ad and venio, to come. See Find.]

A coming; appropriately the coming of our Savior, and in the calendar, it includes four sabbaths before Christmas, beginning of St. Andrew’s Day, or on the sabbath next before or after it. It is intended as a season of devotion, with reference to the coming of Christ in the flesh, and his second coming to judge the world.

ADVENTINE, a. Adventitious. [Not used.]

ADVENTITIOUS, a. [L. adventitius, from advenio. See Advent.]

Added extrinsically; accidental; not essentially inherent; casual; foreign.

Diseases of continuance get an adventitious strength from custom.

ADVENTITIOUSLY, adv. Accidentally.

ADVENTIVE, a. Accidental; adventitious. [Little used.]

ADVENTIVE, n. The thing or person that comes from without. [Little used.]

ADVENTUAL, a. Relating to the season of advent.

ADVENTURE, n. [See Advent.]

1. Hazard; risk; chance; that of which one has no direction; as, at all adventures, that is, at all hazards. [See Venture.]

2. An enterprize of hazard; a bold undertaking, in which hazards are to be encountered, and the issue is staked upon unforeseen events.

3. That which is put to hazard; a sense in popular use with seamen, and usually pronounced venture. Something which a seaman is permitted to carry abroad, with a view to sell for profit.

A bill of adventure, is a writing signed by a person, who takes goods on board of his ship, wholly at the risk of the owner.

ADVENTURE, v.t. To risk, or hazard; to put in the power of unforeseen events; as, to adventure one’s life. [See Venture.]
ADVENTURE, v.i. To dare; to try the chance; as, to adventure on “the tempestuous sea of liberty.”

ADVENTURED, pp. Put to hazard; ventured; risked.


1. One who hazards, or puts something at risk, as merchant-adventurers.

2. One who seeks occasions of chance, or attempts bold, novel, or extraordinary enterprizes.

ADVENTURESOME, a. Bold; daring; incurring hazard. [See Venturesome.]

ADVENTURESOMENESS, n. The quality of being bold and venturesome.

ADVENTURING, ppr. Putting to risk; hazarding.


1. Inclined or willing to incur hazard; bold to encounter danger; daring; courageous; enterprizing; applied to persons.

2. Full of hazard; attended with risk; exposing to danger; requiring courage” applied to things; as, an adventurous undertaking.

And followed freedom on the adventurous tide.

ADVENTUROUSLY, adv. Boldly; daringly; in a manner to incur hazard.

ADVENTUROUSNESS, n. The act or quality of being adventurous.

ADVERB, n. [L. adverbium, of ad and verbum, to a verb.]

In grammar, a word used to modify the sense of a verb, participle, adjective or attribute, and usually placed near it; as, he writes well; paper extremely white. This part of speech might be more significantly named a modifier, as its use is to modify, that is, to vary or qualify the sense of another word, by enlarging or restraining it, or by expressing form, quality or manner, which the word itself does not express. The term adverb, denoting position merely, is often improper.

ADVERBIAL, a. Pertaining to an adverb.

ADVERBIALLY, adv. In the manner of an adverb.

ADVERSARIA, n. [L. from adversus. See Adverse.]

Among the ancients, a book of accounts, so named from the placing of debt and credit in opposition to each other. A commonplace book.

ADVERSARY, n. [See Adverse.]

1. An enemy or foe; one who has enmity at heart.

The Lord shall take vengeance on his adversaries. Nahum 1:2.

In scripture, Satan is called THE adversary, by way of eminence. 1 Peter 5:8.

2. An opponent or antagonist, as in a suit at law, or in single combat; an opposing litigant.

ADVERSARY, a. Opposed; opposite to; adverse. In law, having an opposing party, as an adversary suit; in distinction from an application, in law or equity, to which no opposition is made.

ADVERSATIVE, a. Noting some difference, contrariety, or opposition; as, John is an honest man, but a fanatic. Here but is called an adversative conjunction. This denomination however is not always correct; for but does not always denote opposition, but something additional.

ADVERSATIVE, n. A word denoting contrariety or opposition.

ADVERSE, a. [L. adversus, opposite; of ad and versus, turned; from verto, to turn. See Advert. This word was formerly accented, by some authors, on the last syllable; but the accent is now settled on the first.]

1. Opposite; opposing; acting in a contrary direction; conflicting; counteracting; as, adverse winds; an adverse party.

2. Figuratively, opposing desire; contrary to the wishes, or to supposed good; hence, unfortunate; calamitous; afflictive; pernicious, unprosperous; as, adverse fate or circumstances.

ADVERSE, v.t. advers’. To oppose. [Not used.]

ADVERSELY, adv. In an adverse manner; oppositely; unfortunately; unprosperously; in a manner contrary to desire or success.

ADVERSENESS, n. Opposition; unprosperousness.

ADVERSITY, n. An event, or series of events, which oppose success or desire; misfortune; calamity; affliction; distress; state of unhappiness.

In the day of adversity, consider. Ecclesiastes 7:14.

Ye have rejected God, who saved you out of all you adversities. 1 Samuel 10:19.

ADVERT, v.i. [L. adverto, of ad and verto, to turn.]

To turn the mind or attention to; to regard, observe, or notice: with to; as, he adverted to what was said, or to a circumstance that occurred.

ADVERTED, pp. Attended to; regarded; with to.

ADVERTENCE, ADVERTENCY, n. A direction of the mind to; attention; notice; regard; consideration; heedfulness.

ADVERTENT, a. Attentive; heedful.

ADVERTING, ppr. Attending to; regarding; observing.

ADVERTISE, v.t. s as z. [See Advert.]

1. To inform; to give notice, advice or intelligence to, whether of a past or present event, or of something future.

I will advertise thee what this people will do to thy people in the latter day. Numbers 24:14.

I thought to advertise thee, saying; buy it before the inhabitants and elders of my people. Ruth 4:4.

In this sense, it has of before the subject of information; as, to advertise a man of his losses.

2. To publish a notice of; to publish a written or printed account of; as, to advertise goods or a farm.

ADVERTISED, pp. Informed; notified; warned; used of persons: published; made known; used of things.

ADVERTISEMENT, n. Information; admonition, notice given. More generally, a publication intended to give notice; this may be, by a short account printed in a newspaper, or by a written account posted, or otherwise made public.

ADVERTISER, n. One who advertises. This title is often given to public prints.