Noah Webster’s 1828 Dictionary



DEJECTLY, adv. In a downcast manner.

DEJECTORY, a. Having power or tending to cast down, or to promote evacuations by stool.

DEJECTURE, n. That which is ejected; excrements.

DELACRYMATION, n. [L. A weeping.] A preternatural discharge of watery humors from the eyes; waterishness of the eyes.

DELACTATION, n. A weaning.

DELAPSATION, n. A falling down.

DELAPSE, v.i. [L. To slide.] To fall or slide down.

DELAPSION, n. A falling down of the uterus, anus, etc.

DELAPSED, pp. Fallen down.

DELATE, v.t. [L. To bear.]

1. To carry; to convey.

2. To accuse; to inform against; that is, to bear a charge against.


1. Carriage; conveyance; as the delation of sound.

2. To accuse; to inform against; that is, to bear a charge against.

DELATOR, n. An accuser; an informer.

DELAY, v.t.

1. To prolong the time of acting, or proceeding; to put off; to defer.

My lord delayeth his coming. Matthew 24:48.

2. To retard; to stop, detain or hinder for a time; to restrain motion, or render it slow; as, the mail is delated by bad roads.

Thyrsis, whose artful strains have oft delayed

The huddling brook to hear his madrigal.

3. To allay.

DELAY, v.i. To linger; to move slow; or to stop for a time.

There are certain bounds to the quickness and slowness of the succession of ideas, beyond which they can neither delay nor hasten.


1. A lingering; stay; stop.

2. A putting off or deferring; procrastination; as, the delay of trial is not to be imputed to the plaintiff.

3. Hinderance for a time.

DELAYED, pp. Deferred; detained; hindered for a time; retarded.

DELAYER, n. One who defers; one who lingers.

DELAYING, ppr. Putting off; deferring; procrastinating; retarding; detaining.

DELAYMENT, n. Hinderance.

DELE, v.t. Blot out; erase.

DELEBLE, a. That can be blotted out.

DELACTABLE, a. [L. To delight.] Delightful; highly pleasing; that gives great joy or pleasure; as a delectable garden.

DELECTABLENESS, n. Delightfulness.

DELECTABLY, adv. Delightfully.

DELECTATION, n. Great pleasure; delight.

DELEGACY, n. A number of persons delegated.

DELEGATE, v.t. [L. To send.]

1. To send away; appropriately, to send on an embassy; to send with power to transact business, as a representative. The President delegated three commissioners to the court of St. Cloud.

2. To entrust; to commit; to deliver to anothers care and exercise; as, to delegate authority or power to an envoy, representative or judge.


1. A person appointed and sent by another with powers to transact business as his representative; a deputy; a commissioner; a vicar. In the United States, a person elected or appointed to represent a state or a district, in the Congress, or in a Convention for forming or altering a constitution.

2. In Great Britain, a commissioner appointed by the king, under the great seal, to hear and determine appeals from the ecclesiastical court. Hence the Court of Delegates is the great court of appeal in all ecclesiastical causes. It is used also for the court of appeals from that of the admiralty.

3. A layman appointed to attend an ecclesiastical council.

DELEGATE, a. Deputed; sent to act for or represent another; as a delegate judge.

DELEGATED, pp. Deputed; sent with a trust or commission to act for another; appointed a judge; committed, as authority.

DELEGATING, ppr. Deputing; sending with a commission to act for another; appointing; committing; entrusting.


1. A sending away; the act of putting in commission, or investing with authority to act for another; the appointment of a delegate.

The duties of religion cannot be performed by delegation.

2. Th persons deputed to act for another, or for others. Thus, the representatives of Massachusetts in Congress are called the delegation, or whole delegation.

3. In the civil law, the assignment of a debt to another, as when a debtor appoints his debtor to answer to the creditor in his place.

DELETE, v.t. To blot out.

DELETERIOUS, a. [L. To blot out or destroy.]

1. Having the quality of destroying, or extinguishing life; destructive; poisonous; as a deleterious plant or quality.

2. Injurious; pernicious.

DELETERY, a. Destructive; poisonous.

DELETION, n. [L. To blot out.]

1. The act of blotting out or erasing.

2. Destruction.

DELETORY, n. That which blots out.

DELF, n.

1. A mine; a quarry; a pit dug.

2. Earthern ware, covered with enamel or white glazing in imitation of China ware or porcelain, made at Delft in Holland; properly, Delft-ware.

DELIBATE, v.t. [L. To taste.] To taste; to take a sip.

DELIBATION, n. A taste; an essay.

DELIBERATE, v.i. [L. To weigh.] To weigh in the mind; to consider and examine the reasons for and against a measure; to estimate the weight or force of arguments, or the probable consequences of a measure, in order to a choice or decision; to pause and consider. A wise prince will deliberate before he wages war.

The woman that deliberates is lost.

DELIBERATE, v.t. To balance in the mind; to weigh; to consider.

1. Weighing facts and arguments with a view to a choice or decision; carefully considering the probable consequences of a step; circumspect; slow in determining; applies to persons; as a deliberate judge or counselor.

2. Formed with deliberation; well advised or considered; not sudden or rash; as a deliberate opinion; a deliberate measure, or result.

3. Slow; as a deliberate death or echo.

DELIBERATELY, adv. With careful consideration, or deliberation; circumspectly; not hastily or rashly; slowly. This purpose was deliberately formed.

DELIBERATENESS, n. Calm consideration; circumspection; due attention to the arguments for and against a measure; caution.


1. The act of deliberating; the act of weighing and examining the reasons for and against a choice or measure; consideration. We say, a measure has been taken with deliberation.

2. Mutual discussion and examination of the reasons for and against a measure; as the deliberations of a legislative body or council.


1. Pertaining to deliberation; proceeding or acting by deliberation, or by mutual discussion and examination; as, the legislature is a deliberative body.

2. Having a right or power to deliberate or discuss.

In councils, the bishops have a deliberative voice.

3. Apt or disposed to consider.

DELIBERATIVE, n. A discourse in which a question is discussed or weighed and examined. A kind of rhetoric employed in proving a thing and convincing others of its truth, in order to persuade them to adopt it.

DELIBERATIVELY, adv. By deliberation.

DELICACY, n. In a general sense, that which delights or pleases. Hence,

1. Fineness of texture; smoothness; softness; tenderness; as the delicacy of the skin; and nearly in the same sense, applicable to food; as the delicacy of flesh, meat or vegetables. Hence,

2. Daintiness; pleasantness to the taste.

3. Elegant or feminine beauty; as delicacy of form.

4. Nicety; minute accuracy; as the delicacy of coloring in painting.

5. Neatness in dress; elegance proceeding from a nice selection and adjustment of the several parts of dress.

6. Softness of manners; civility or politemess proceeding from a nice observance of propriety, and a desire to please; as delicacy of behavior.

7. Indulgence; gentle treatment; as delicacy of education.

8. Tenderness; scrupulousness; the quality manifested in nice attention to right, and care to avoid wrong, or offense.

9. Acute or nice perception of what is pleasing to the sense of tasting; hence figuratively, a nice perception of beauty and deformity, or the faculty of such nice perception.

Delicacy of taste tends to invigorate the social affections, and moderate those that are selfish.

10. That which delights the senses, particularly the taste; applied to eatables; as, the peach is a great delicacy.

11. Tenderness of constitution; weakness; that quality or state of the animal body which renders it very impressible to injury; as delicacy of constitution or frame.

12. Smallness; fineness; slenderness; tenuity; as the delicacy of a thread, or fiber.

13. Tenderness; nice susceptibility of impression; as delicacy of feeling.

DELICATE, a. [L. Connected with delight; to delight.]

1. Of a fine texture; fine; soft; smooth; clear, or fair; as a delicate skin.

2. Nice; pleasing to the taste; of an agreeable flavor; as delicate food; a delicate dish.

3. Nice in perception of what is agreeable; dainty; as a delicate taste; and figuratively, nice and discriminating in beauty and deformity.

4. Nice; accurate; fine; soft to the eye; as a delicate color.

5. Nice in forms; regulated by minute observance of propriety, or by condescension and attention to the wishes and feelings of others; as delicate behavior or manners; a delicate address.

6. Pleasing to the senses; as a delicate flavor.

7. Fine; slender; minute; as a delicate thread.

8. That cannot be handled without injury or danger; that must be touched with care; as a delicate point or topic; a delicate question.

9. Composed of fine threads, or nicely interwoven; as a delicate texture; hence, soft and smooth to the touch; as delicate silk.

10. Tender; effeminate; not able to endure hardship; very impressible to injury; as a delicate frame or constitution.

11. Feeble; not sound or robust; as delicate health.

DELICATE, n. Any thing nice; a nicety.


1. In a delicate manner; with nice regard to propriety and the feelings of others.

2. Daintily; luxuriously.

They that live delicately are in kings courts. Luke 7:25.

3. With soft elegance; as an expression delicately turned.

4. Tenderly; with indulgence in ease, elegance and luxury. Proverbs 29:21.

DELICATENESS, n. The state of being delicate; tenderness; softness; effeminacy. Deuteronomy 28:56.


1. Highly pleasing to the taste; most sweet or grateful to the senses; affording exquisite pleasure; as a delicious viand; delicious fruit or wine.

2. Most pleasing to the mind; very grateful; yielding exquisite delight; as, this poem affords a delicious entertainment.

DELICIOUSLY, adv. In a delicious manner; in a manner to please the taste or gratify the mind; sweetly; pleasantly; delightfully; as, to feed deliciously; to be deliciously entertained.


1. The quality of being delicious, or very grateful to the taste or mind; as the deliciousness of a repast.

2. Delight; great pleasure.

DELIGATION, n. [L. To bind.] In surgery, a binding up; a bandaging.


1. A high degree of pleasure, or satisfaction of mind; joy.

His delight is in the law of the Lord. Psalm 1:2.

2. That which gives great pleasure; that which affords delight.

Titus was the delight of human kind.

I was daily his delight. Proverbs 8:30.

Delight is a more permanent pleasure than joy, and not dependent on sudden excitement.


1. To affect with great pleasure; to please highly; to give or afford high satisfaction or joy; as, a beautiful landscape delights the eye; harmony delights the ear; the good conduct of children, and especially their piety, delights their parents.

I will delight myself in thy statutes. Psalm 119:16.

2. To receive great pleasure in.

I delight to do thy will. Psalm 40:8.

DELIGHT, v.i. To have or take great pleasure; to be greatly pleased or rejoiced; followed by in.

I delight in the law of God after the inward man. Romans 7:22.


1. Greatly pleased; rejoiced; followed by with.

That ye may be delighted with the abundance of her glory. Isaiah 66:11.

2. a. Full of delight.

DELIGHTER, n. One who takes delight.

DELIGHTFUL, a. Highly pleasing; affording great pleasure and satisfaction; as a delightful thought; a delightful prospect.


1. In a manner to receive great pleasure; very agreeable; as, we were delightfully employed, or entertained.

2. In a delightful manner; charmingly; in a manner to afford great pleasure; as, the lady sings and plays delightfully.


1. The quality of being delightful, or of affording great pleasure; as the delightfulness of a prospect, or of scenery.

2. Great pleasure; delight.

DELIGHTLESS, a. Affording no pleasure or delight.

DELIGHTSOME, a. Very pleasing; delightful.

DELIGHTSOMELY, adv. Very pleasantly; in a delightful manner.

DELIGHTSOMENESS, n. Delightfulness; pleasantness in a high degree.

DELINEAMENT, n. Representation by delineation.

DELINEATE, v.t. [L. A line.]

1. To draw the lines which exhibit the form of a thing; to mark out with lines; to make a draught; to sketch or design; as, to delineate the form of the earth, or a diagram.

2. To paint; to represent in picture; to draw a likeness of; as, to delineate Nestor like Adonis, or time with Absaloms head.

3. Figuratively, to describe; to represent to the mind or understanding; to exhibit a likeness in words; as, to delineate the character of Newton, or the virtue of Aristides.

DELINEATED, pp. Drawn; marked with lines exhibiting the form or figure; sketched; designed; painted; described.

DELINEATING, ppr. Drawing the form; sketching; painting; describing.


1. First draught of a thing; outline; representation of a form or figure by lines; sketch; design.

2. Representation in words; description; as the delineation of a character.

DELINEATURE, n. Delineation.

DELINIMENT, n. Mitigation.

DELINQUENCY, n. [L. To fail or omit duty; to leave.] Failure or omission of duty; a fault; a misdeed; and positively, an offense; a crime. It is particularly, but not exclusively applied to neglect of duty in officers of public trust.

DELINQUENT, a. Failing in duty; offending by neglect of duty.

DELINQUENT, n. One who fails to perform his duty, particularly a public officer who neglects his duty; an offender; one who commits a fault or crime.

A delinquent ought to be cited in the place or jurisdiction where the delinquency was committed.

DELIQUATE, v.t. or i. [L. To melt.] To melt or be dissolved.

DELIQUATION, n. A melting.

DELIQUESCE, v.i. [L. To melt; to melt or become soft.] To melt gradually and become liquid by attracting and absorbing moisture from the air; as certain salts, acids and alkalies.

DELIQUESCENCE, n. Spontaneous liquefaction in the air; a gradual melting or becoming liquid by absorption of water from the atmosphere.

DELIQUESCENT, a. Liquefying in the air; capable of attracting moisture from the atmosphere and becoming liquid; as deliquescent salts.

DELIQUIATE, v.i. To melt and become liquid by imbibing water from the air.

DELIQUIATION, n. A melting by attracting water from the air.


1. In chimistry, a melting or dissolution in the air, or in a moist place.

2. A liquid state; as, a salt falls into a deliquium.

3. In medicine, a swooning or fainting; called also syncope.

DELIRAMENT, n. A wandering of the mind; foolish fancy.

DELIRIOUS, a. Roving in mind; light-headed; disordered in intellect; having ideas that are wild, irregular and unconnected.

DELIRIOUSNESS, n. The state of being delirious; delirium.

DELIRIUM, n. [L. To wander in mind, to rave; to make balks in plowing, that is, to err, wander, miss.]

A state in which the ideas of a person are wild, irregular and unconnected, or do not correspond with the truth or with external objects; a roving or wandering of the mind; disorder of the intellect. Fevers often produce delirium.

An alienation of mind connected with fever.

Symptomatic derangement, or that which is dependent on some other disease, in distinction from idiopathic derrangement or mania.

DELITESCENCE, n. Retirement; obscurity.

DELIVER, v.t. [L. Free, disengaged; to free, to peel.]

1. To free; to release, as from restraint; to set at liberty; as, to deliver one from captivity.

2. To rescue, or save.

Deliver me, O my God, from the hand of the wicked. Psalm 71:4.

3. To give, or transfer; to put into anothers hand or power; to commit; to pass from one to another.

Thou shalt deliver Pharoahs cup into his hand. Genesis 40:11.

So we say, to deliver goods to a carrier; to deliver a letter; to deliver possession of an estate.

4. To surrender; to yield; to give up; to resign; as, to deliver a fortress to an enemy. It is often followed by up; as, to deliver up the city; to deliver up stolen goods.

Th exalted mind

All sense of woe delivers to the wind.

5. To disbuden of a child.

6. To utter; to pronounce; to speak; to send forth in words; as, to deliver a sermon, an address, or an oration.

7. To exert in motion.

To deliver to the wind, to cast away; to reject.

To deliver over, to transfer; to give or pass from one to another; as, to deliver over goods to another.

2. To surrender or resign; to put into anothers power; to commit to the discretion of; to abandon to.

Deliver me not over to the will of my enemies. Psalm 27:12.

To deliver up, to give up; to surrender.

DELIVER, a. Free; nimble.

DELIVERABLE, a. That may be or is to be delivered.

A bill of lading may state that the goods are deliverable to a particular person therein named.


1. Release from captivity, slavery, oppression, or any restraint.

He hath sent me to heal the broken-hearted, to preach deliverance to the captives. Luke 4:18.

2. Rescue from danger or any evil.

God sent me to save your lives by a great deliverance. Genesis 45:7.

3. The act of bringing forth children.

4. The act of giving or transferring from one to another.

5. The act of speaking or pronouncing; utterance. [In the three last senses, delivery is now used.]

6. Acquittal of a prisoner, by the verdict of a jury. God send you a good deliverance.

DELIVERED, pp. Freed; released; transferred or transmitted; passed from one to another; committed; yielded; surrendered; rescued; uttered; pronounced.


1. One who delivers; one who releases or rescues; a preserver.

The Lord raised up a deliverer to Israel. Judges 3:9.

2. One who relates, or communicates.

DELIVERING, ppr. Releasing; setting free; rescuing; saving; surrendering; giving over; yielding; resigning.


1. The act of delivering.

2. Release; rescue; as from slavery, restraint, oppression or danger.

3. Surrender; a giving up.

4. A giving or passing from one to another; as the delivery of goods, or of a deed.

5. Utterance; pronunciation; or manner of speaking. He has a good delivery. I was charmed with his graceful delivery.

6. Childbirth. Isaiah 26:17.

7. Free motion or use of the limbs.

DELL, n. A pit, or a hollow place; a cavity or narrow opening.

DELPH, [See Delf. No. 2.]

DELPHIA or DELPHINIA, n. A vegetable alkali lately discovered in the Delphinium staphysagria. It is crystaline when wet, but it becomes opake when exposed to air. Its taste is bitter and acrid. When heated it melts, but on cooling becomes hard and brittle like resin.

DELPHIAN or DELPHIC, a. Relating to Delphi, and to the celebrated oracle of that place.


1. Pertaining to the dolphin, a genus of fishes.

2. Pertaining to the dauphin of France; as the delphine edition of the classics.

DELPHINITE, n. A mineral called also pistacite and epidote.


1. Triangular; an epithet applied to a muscle of the shoulder which moves the arm forwards, upwards and backwards.

2. In botany, shaped somewhat like a delta or rhomb, having four angles, of which the lateral ones are less distant from the base than the others; as a deltoid leaf.

Trowel-shaped, having three angles, of which the terminal one is much further from the base than the lateral ones.

DELUDABLE, a. That may be deluded or deceived; liable to be imposed on.

DELUDE, v.t.

1. To deceive; to impose on; to lead from truth or into error; to mislead the mind or judgement; to beguile. Cheat is generally applied to deception in bargains; delude, to deception in opinion. An artful man deludes his followers. We are often deluded by false appearances.

2. To frustrate or disappoint.

DELUDED, pp. Deceived; misled; led into error.

DELUDER, n. One who deceives; a deceiver; an imposter; one who holds out false pretenses.

DELUDING, ppr. Deceiving; leading astray; misleading the opinion or judgment.

DELUDING, n. The act of deceiving; falsehood.