Noah Webster’s 1828 Dictionary



BOCAQUE or BOCAKE, n. An animal found on the banks of the Nieper, resembling a rabbit, except that its ears are shorter, and it has no tail.

BOCASINE, n. A sort of fine linen or buckram.

BOCE, n. The sparus, a beautiful fish.

BOCKELET, BOCKERET, n. A kind of long-winged hawk.

BODE, v.t. To portend; to foreshow; to presage; to indicate something future by signs; to be the omen of; most generally applied to things; as, our vices bode evil to the country.

BODE, v.i. To foreshow; to presage.

This bodes well to you.

BODE, n. An omen.

1. A stop.

BODEMENT, n. An omen; portent; prognostic; a fore-showing.

BODGE, v.i. [See Boggle.] To boggle; to stop. [Not used.]

BODGE, n. A botch. [Not used.]

BODICE, n. Stays; a waistcoat, quilted with whalebone; worn by women.

BODIED, a. [from body.] Having a body.

BODILESS, a. [See Body.] Having no body or material form; incorporeal.

BODILY, a. Having or containing a body or material form; corporeal; as bodily dimensions.

1. Relating or pertaining to the body, in distinction from the mind; as bodily defects; bodily pain.

2. Real; actual; as bodily act.

BODILY, adv. Corporeally; united with a body or matter.

It is his human nature, in which the Godhead dwells bodily.

BODING, ppr. [from bode.] Foreshowing; presaging.

BODING, n. An omen.

BODKIN, n. [Gr. a thorn.]

1. An instrument of steel; bone, ivory or the like, with a small blade, and a sharp point, for making holes by piercing. A like instrument with an eye, for drawing thread, tape, or ribin through a loop, etc. An instrument to dress the hair.

2. A dagger. [Not in use.]

BODLEIAN, a. Pertaining to Sir Thomas Bodley, who founded a celebrated library in the 16th century.

BODY, n.

1. The frame of an animal; the material substance of an animal, in distinction from the living principle of beasts, and the soul of man.

Be not anxious for your body.

2. Matter, as opposed to spirit.

3. A person; a human being; sometimes alone; more generally, with some or no; as, somebody; nobody.

4. Reality, as opposed to representation.

A shadow of things to come, but the body is of Christ. Colossians 2:17.

5. A collective mass; a number of individuals or particulars united; as the body of mankind. Christians united or the Church is called the body, of which each Christian is a member, and Christ the head. 1 Corinthians 12:12-27.

6. The main army, in distinction from the wings, van or rear. Also, any number of forces under one commander.

7. A corporation; a number of men, united by a common tie, by one form of government, or by occupation; as the legislative body; the body of the clergy; body corporate; body politic.

8. The main part; the bulk; as the body of a tree; the body of a coach, of a ship, etc.

9. Any extended solid substance; matter; any substance or mass distinct from others; as a metaline body; a floating body; a moving body; a light body; a heavy body.

10. A pandect; a general collection; a code; a system; as a body of laws; a body of divinity.

11. Strength; as wine of a good body.

12. Among painters, colors bear a body, when they are capable of being ground so fine, and of being mixed so entirely with oil, as to seem only a very thick oil of the same color.

13. The unrenewed part of man, or sensual affections.

But I keep under by body. 1 Corinthians 9:27.

14. The extent; the limits.

Cause to come here on such a day, twelve free and lawful men--from the body of your county.

BODY, v.t. To produce in some form.

Imagination bodies forth the forms of things.

BODY-CLOTHES, n. plu. [body and cloth.]

Clothing or covering for the body, as for a horse.

BODY-GUARD, n. The guard that protects or defense the person; the life guard. Hence, security.

BOG, n.

1. A quagmire covered with grass or other plants. It is defined by marsh, and morass, but differs from a marsh, as a part from the whole. Wet grounds are bogs, which are the softest and too soft to bear a man; marshes or fens, which are less soft, but very wet; and swamps, which are soft spongy land, upon the surface, but sustain man and beast, and are often mowed.

2. A little elevated spot or clump of earth, in marshes and swamps, filled with roots and grass. [This is a common use of the word in New England.]

BOG, v.t. To whelm or plunge, as in mud and mire.

BOG-BEAN, n. [bog and bean; called buck-bean.]

Menyanthes, a plant, the marsh-trefoil, which grows in moist and marshy places.

BOG-BERRY, n. [bog and berry.] Vaccinium, a name of the cranberry growing in low lands and marshy places.

BOGGLE, v.i.

1. To doubt; to hesitate; to stop, as if afraid to proceed, or as if impeded by unforeseen difficulties; to play fast and loose. We boggle at every unusual appearance.

2. To dissemble.

BOGGLE, v.t. To embarrass with difficulties; a popular or vulgar use of the word in the United States.

BOGGLED, pp. Perplexed and impeded by sudden difficulties; embarrassed.

BOGGLER, n. A doubter; a timorous man.

BOGGLING, ppr. Starting or stopping at difficulties; hesitating.

BOGGLISH, a. Doubtful. [Not used.]

BOGGY, a. [from bog.] Containing bogs; full of bogs.

BOGHOUSE, n. [bog and house.] A house of office.

BOG-LAND, a. [bog and land.] Living in or pertaining to a marshy country.

BOGLE, BOGGLE, n. A bugbear.

BOG-ORE, n. An ore of iron found in boggy or swampy land.

BOG-RUSH, n. [bog and rush.] A rush that grows in bogs, the Schoenus.

1. A bird, a species of warbler, of the size of a wren, of a testaceous brown color, seen among the bog-rushes of Schonen in Sweden.

BOG-SPAVIN, n. [bog and spavin.] In horses, an encysted tumor on the inside of the hough, containing a gelatinous matter.

BOG-TROTTER, n. [bog and trot.] One who lives in a boggy country.

BOG-WHORT, n. [bog and whort.] The bilberry or whortleberry growing in low lands.

BOHEA, n. A species of coarse or low priced tea from China; a species of black tea.

BOIAR or BOYAR, n. In the Russian Empire, a nobleman; a lord; a person of quality; a soldier. This word answers nearly to Baron in Great Britain, and other countries in the west of Europe.

BOIARIN, n. In Russia, a gentleman; a person of distinction; the master of a family.

BOLGUACU, n. The largest of the serpent kind, and said to be forty feet long.

BOIL, v.i. [L. bullio, bulla, a bubble.]

1. To swell, heave, or be agitated by the action of heat; to bubble; to rise in bubbles; as, the water boils. In a chimical sense, to pass from a liquid to an aeriform state or vapor, with a bubbling motion.

2. To be agitated by any other cause than heat; as, the boiling waves which roll and foam.

3. To be hot or fervid; to swell by native heat, vigor or irritation; as the boiling blood of youth; his blood boils with anger.

4. To be in boiling water; to suffer boiling heat in water or other liquid, for cookery or other purpose.

5. To bubble; to effervesce; as a mixture of acid and alkali. To boil away, to evaporate by boiling.

To boil over, is to run over the top of a vessel, as liquor when thrown into violent agitation by heat or other cause of effervescence.

BOIL, v.t. To dress or cook in boiling water; to seethe; to extract the juice or quality of any thing by boiling.

1. To prepare for some use in boiling liquor; as, to boil silk, thread or cloth. To form by boiling and evaporation. This word is applied to a variety of processes for different purposes; as, to boil salt, or sugar, etc. In general, boiling is a violent agitation, occasioned by heat; to boil a liquor is to subject it to heat till it bubbles, and to boil any solid substance is to subject it to heat in a boiling liquid.

BOIL, n. A tumor upon the flesh, accompanied with soreness and inflammation; a sore angry swelling.

BOILED, pp. Dressed or cooked by boiling; subjected to the action of boiling liquor.

BOILER, n. A person who boils.

1. A vessel in which any thing is boiled. A large pan, or vessel of iron, copper or brass, used in distilleries, pot-ash works and the like, for boiling large quantities of liquor at once.

BOILERY, n. A place for boiling and the apparatus.

BOILING, ppr. Bubbling; heaving in bubbles; being agitated as boiling liquor; swelling with heat, ardor or passion; dressing or preparing for some purpose by hot water.

BOILING, n. The act or state of bubbling; agitation by heat; ebullition; the act of dressing by hot water; the act of preparing by hot water, or of evaporating by heat.

BOIOBI, n. A green snake, found in America, an ell in length, called by the Portuguese, cobra de verb. It is harmless, unless provoked; but its bite is noxious.


1. Loud; roaring; violent; stormy; as a boisterous wind.

2. Turbulent; furious; tumultuous; noisy; as a boisterous man.

3. Large; unwieldy; huge; clumsily violent; as a boisterous club.

4. Violent; as a boisterous heat.

BOISTEROUSLY, adv. Violently; furiously; with loud noise; tumultuously.

BOISTEROUSNESS, n. The state or quality of being boisterous; turbulence; disorder; tumultuousness.

BOITIAPO, n. A Brazilian serpent, about eight feet long, covered with triangular scales, of an olive or yellowish color, whose bite is mortal.

BOLARY, a. [See Bole.] Pertaining to bole or clay, or partaking of its nature and qualities.

BOLBITINE, a. An epithet given to one of the channels of the Nile, by which its waters are discharged into the Mediterranean. It is the second from West to East, but nearly filled with sand.

BOLD, a.

1. Daring; courageous; brave; intrepid; fearless; applied to men or other animals; as, bold as a lion.

2. Requiring courage in the execution; executed with spirit or boldness; planned with courage and spirit; as a bold enterprise.

3. Confident; not timorous.

We were bold in our God to speak to you. 1 Thessalonians 2:2.

4. In an ill sense, rude, forward, impudent.

5. Licentious; showing great liberty of fiction or expression; as, the figures of an author are bold.

6. Standing out to view; striking to the eye; as bold figures in painting, sculpture and architecture.

7. Steep; abrupt; prominent; as a bold shore, which enters the water almost perpendicularly, so that ships can approach near to land without danger.

Where the bold cape its warning forehead rears.

To make bold, to take freedoms; a common, but not a correct phrase. To be bold is better.

BOLD, v.t. To make daring. [Not used.]

BOLDEN, v.t. To make bold; to give confidence. This is nearly disused; being superseded by embolden.

BOLD-FACE, n. [bold and face.] Impudence; sauciness; a term of reprehension, and reproach.

BOLD-FACED, a. Impudent.

BOLDLY, adv. In a bold matter; courageously; intrepidly; without timidity or fear; with confidence. Sometimes, perhaps, in a bad sense, for impudently.

BOLDNESS, n. Courage; bravery; intrepidity; spirit; fearlessness. I cannot, with Johnson, interpret this word by fortitude or magnanimity. Boldness does not, I think, imply the firmness of mind, which constitutes fortitude, nor the elevation and generosity of magnanimity.

1. Prominence; the quality of exceeding the ordinary rules of scrupulous nicety and caution; applied to style, expression, and metaphors in language; and to figures in painting, sculpture and architecture.

2. Freedom from timidity; liberty.

Great is my boldness of speech towards you. 2 Corinthians 7:4.

3. Confidence; confident trust.

We have boldness and access with confidence. Ephesians 3:12.

4. Freedom from bashfulness; assurance; confident mien.

5. Prominence; steepness; as the boldness of the shore.

6. Excess of freedom, bordering on impudence.

BOLE, n.

1. The body, or stem of a tree. [Not in use.]

2. A measure of corn, containing six bushels.

BOLE, n. A kind of fine clay, often highly colored by iron. Its color is reddish yellow of various shades, often with a tinge of brown, sometimes passing to reddish, yellowish, or blackish brown, flesh red, or yellowish white. It is opake or a little translucid, especially at the edges, in the red and yellow varieties. It is compact and its fracture conchoidal. It is brittle, smooth, a little unctuous, and receives a polish from the finger nail. It adheres to the tongue, melts by degrees in the mouth and impresses a slight sense of astringency.

Armenian bole is of a bright red color, with a tinge of yellow, harder than the other kinds, and of a rough dusty surface.

Bole of Blois is yellow, lighter than the other kinds, and it effervesces with acids.

Bohemian bole is of a yellow color, with a cast of red, and of a flaky texture.

French bole is of a pale red color, variegated with specks of white and yellow.

Lemnian bole is of a pale red color.

Silesian bole is of a pale yellow color.

BOLETIC, a. Boletic acid is the acid of Boletus, a genus of mushrooms.

BOLETUS, n. [L.] A genus of mushrooms, containing many species.

BOLIS, n. [L. from Gr., a dart; to throw.]

A fire-ball darting through the air, followed by a train of light or sparks.

BOLL, n. The pod or capsule of a plant, as of flax; a pericarp. Bole, a measure of six bushels, is sometimes written in this manner.

BOLL, v.i. To form into a pericarp or seed-vessel.

The barley was in the ear and the flax was bolled. Exodus 9:31.

Heb., Gr., as translated by the seventy.

Bollard timbers, in a ship, or knight-heads, are two timbers, rising just within the stem, one on each side of the bowsprit, to secure its end.

In docks, bollards are large posts set in the ground on each side, to which are lashed large blocks, through which are reeved the transporting hawsers for docking and undocking ships.

BOLOGNIAN STONE. Bolo’nain stone. Radiated sulphate of barytes; found in roundish masses, composed of radiating fibers; first discovered near Bologna. It is phosphorescent, when calcined.


1. A long pillow or cushion, used to support the head of persons lying on a bed; generally laid under the pillows.

2. A pad, or quilt, used to hinder pressure, support any part of the body, or make a bandage sit easy upon a wounded part a compress.

3. In sadlery, a part of a saddle raised upon the bows or hinder part, to hold the rider’s thigh.

4. In ships, a cushion or bag, filled with tarred canvas, used to preserve the stays from being worn or chafed by the masts.

BOLSTER, v.t. To support with a bolster, pillow or any soft pad or quilt.

1. To support; to hold up; to maintain.

2. To afford a bed to.

BOLSTERED, a. Swelled out.

BOLSTERER, n. A supporter.

BOLSTERING, n. A prop or support.

BOLT, n. [L. pello.]

1. An arrow; a dart; a pointed shaft.

2. A strong cylindrical pin, of iron or other metal, used to fasten a door, a plank, a chain, etc. In ships, bolts are used in the sides and decks, and have different names, as rag-bolts, eye-bolts, ring-bolts, chain-bolts, etc. In gunnery, there are prise-bolts, transom-bolts, traverse-bolts, and bracket-bolts.

3. A thunder-bolt; a stream of lightning, so named from its darting like a bolt.

4. The quantity of twenty-eight ells of canvas.

BOLT, v.t. To fasten or secure with a bolt, or iron pin, whether a door, a plank, fetters or any thing else.

1. To fasten; to shackle; to restrain.

2. To blurt out; to utter or throw out precipitately.

I hate when vice can bolt her arguments.

In this sense it is often followed by out.

3. To sift or separate bran from flour. In America this term is applied only to the operation performed in mills.

4. Among sportsmen, to start or dislodge, used of coneys.

5. To examine by sifting; to open or separate the parts of a subject, to find the truth; generally followed by out. “Time and nature will bolt out the truth of things.” [Inelegant.]

6. To purify; to purge. [Unusual.]

7. To discuss or argue; as at Gray’s inn, where cases are privately discussed by students and barristers.

BOLT, v.i. To shoot forth suddenly; to spring out with speed and suddenness; to start forth like a bolt; commonly followed by out; as, to bolt out of the house, or out of a den.

BOLT-AUGER, n. [bolt and auger.] A large borer, used in ship-building.

BOLT-BOAT, n. [bolt and boat.] A strong boat that will endure a rough sea.

BOLTED, pp. Made a fast with a bolt; shot forth; sifted; examined.

BOLTER, n. An instrument or machine for separating bran from flour or the coarser part of meal from the finer.

1. A kind of net.

BOLT-HEAD, n. [bolt and head.] A long straight-necked glass vessel for chimical distillations, called also a matrass or receiver.

BOLTING, ppr. Fastening with a bolt, or bolts; blurting out; shooting forth suddenly; separating bran from flour; sifting; examining; discussing; dislodging.

BOLTING, n. The act of fastening with a bolt or bolts; a sifting; discussion.

BOLTING-CLOTH, n. [bolt and cloth.] A linen or hair cloth of which bolters are made for sifting meal.

BOLTING-HOUSE, n. [bolt and house.] The house or place where meal is bolted.

BOLTING-HUTCH, n. A tub for bolted flour.

BOLTING-MILL, n, [bolt and mill.] A machine or engine for sifting meal.

BOLTING-TUB, n. A tub to sift meal in.

BOLT-ROPE, n. [bolt and rope.] A rope to which the edges of sails are sewed to strengthen them. That part of it on the perpendicular side is called the leech-rope; that at the bottom, the foot-rope; that at the top, the head-rope.

BOLT-SPRIT, n. [From the universal popular pronunciation of this word, this may have been the original word; but I doubt it. See. Bowspirit.]

BOLUS, n. [L. bolus; Gr. a mass.] A soft mass of any thing medicinal to be swallowed at once, like a pill. It may be of any ingredients, made a little thicker than honey.

BOM, n. A large serpent found in America, of a harmless nature, and remarkable for uttering a sound like bom.

BOMB, [L. bombus.] A great noise.

1. A large shell of cast iron, round and hollow, with a vent to receive a fusee, which is made of wood. This being filled with gunpowder and the fusee driven into the vent, the fusee is set on fire and the bomb is thrown from a mortar, in such a direction as to fall into a fort, city or enemy’s camp, when it bursts with great violence and often with terrible effect. The inventor of bombs is not known; they came into common use about the year 1634.

2. The stroke upon a bell.

BOMB, v.t. To attack with bombs; to bombard. [Not used.]
BOMB, v.i. To sound.

BOMBARD, n. [bomb and ard, kind.]

1. A piece of short thick ordnance with a large mouth, formerly used; some of them carrying a ball of three hundred pounds weight. It is called also basilisk, and by the Dutch, donderbuss, thunder-gun. But the thing and the name are no longer in use.

2. An attack with bombs; bombardment.

3. A barrel; a drinking vessel.

BOMBARD, v.t. To attack with bombs thrown from mortars.

BOMBARDED, pp. Attacked with bombs.

BOMBARDIER, n. One whose business is to attend the loading and firing of mortars.

1. Carabus, a genus of insects of the beetle kind.

BOMBARDING, ppr. Attacking with shells or bombs.

BOMBARDMENT, n. An attack with bombs; the act of throwing bombs into a town, fort or ship.

BOMBARDO, n. A musical instrument of the wind kind, much like the bassoon, and used as a base to the hautboy.

BOMBASIN, n. s as z. A name given to two sorts of stuffs, one of silk, the other crossed of cotton.

BOMBAST, n. Originally a stuff of soft loose texture, used to swell garments. Hence, high sounding words; an inflated style; fustian; a serious attempt, by strained description, to raise a low or familiar subject beyond its rank, which, instead of being sublime, never fails to be ridiculous.

BOMBAST, a. High-sounding; inflated; big without meaning.

BOMBASTIC, a. Swelled; high sounding; bombast.

BOMBASTRY, n. Swelling words without much meaning; fustian.

BOMB-CHEST, n. [bomb and chest.] A chest filled with bombs or only with gunpowder, placed under ground, to make destruction by its displosion.

BOMBIAT, n. A salt formed by the bombic acid and any base saturated.

BOMBIC, a. [L. bombyx, a silk worm.]

Pertaining to the silk worm; as bombic acid.

BOMBILATION, n. [L. bombilo.] Sound; report; noise. [Little used.]

BOMB-KETCH, BOMB-VESSEL, n. A small ship or vessel, constructed for throwing bombs into a fortress from the sea, and built remarkably strong, in order to sustain the shocks produced by the discharge of the mortars. They generally are rigged as ketches.

BOMBYCINOUS, a. [L. bombycinus, from bombyx, a silk worm.]

1. Silken; made of silk.

2. Being of the color of the silk worm; transparent, with a yellow tint.

BONA-FIDE, [L.] With good faith; without fraud or deception.

BONA-ROBA, n. A showy wanton.