Noah Webster’s 1828 Dictionary
LEGITIMATELY — LEUCO-ETHIOPIC
1. Lawfully; according to law.
2. Genuinely; not falsely.
LEGITIMATENESS, n. legality; lawfulness; genuineness.
1. The act of rendering legitimate, or of investing an illegitimate child with the rights of one born in wedlock.
2. Lawful birth. [Unusual.]
LEGUME, LEGUMEN, n. [L. legumen, lego to collect, and signifying that which collects, or holds, or a collection.]
1. In botany, a pericarp or seed-vessel, of two valves, in which the seeds are fixed to one suture only. In the latter circumstance it differs from a siliqua, in which the seeds are attached to both sutures. In popular use, a legume is called a pod, or a cod; as a pea-pod, or peas-cod.
2. In the plural, pulse, peas, beans, etc.
LEGUMINOUS, a. Pertaining to pulse; consisting of pulse. Leguminous plants are such as have a legume for a pericarp, as peas and beans.
LEISURABLE, a. s as z. [See Leisure.] Vacant of employment; not occupied; as leisurable hours. [Little used.]
LEISURABLY, adv. At leisure; without hurry. [Little used.]
LEISURE, n. lezh’ur or lee’zhur.
1. Freedom from occupation or business; vacant time; time free from employment.
The desire of leisure is much more natural than of business and care.
I shall leave with him that rebuke to be considered at his leisure.
2. Convenience of time.
He sigh’d, and had no leisure more to say. [Not used.]
LEISURELY, a. Done at leisure; not hasty; deliberate; slow; as a leisurely walk or march; a leisurely survey of life.
LEISURELY, adv. Not in haste or hurry; slowly; at leisure; deliberately.
We descended very leisurely, by friend being careful to count the steps.
A sweetheart; a gallant, or a mistress. Obs.
LEME, n. A ray of light. [Not in use.]
LEME, v.i. To shine. Obs.
LEMMA, n. [Gr. from to receive.]
In mathematics, a previous proposition proved, or a proposition demonstrated for the purpose of being used in the demonstration of some other proposition. It is therefore a received truth.
LEMMING, LEMING, n. A species of animal belonging to the genus Mus; a kind of rat, in the north of Europe, which sometimes migrates from north to south in immense numbers.
Lemnian earth, or sphragide, from the isle of Lemnos, in the Egean sea, a kind of astringent medicinal earth, of a fatty consistence and reddish color, used in the same cases as bole. It has the external appearance of clay, with a smooth surface resembling agate, especially in recent fractures. It removes impurities like soap.
LEMNISCATE, n. [L. lemniscus, a ribbon; lemniscatus, adorned with ribbons.] A curve in the form of the figure 8.
1. The fruit of a tree belonging to the genus Citrus, which grows in warm climates. This fruit furnishes a cooling acid juice, which forms an ingredient in some of our most delicious liquors.
2. Lemon or lemon tree, the tree that produces lemons.
A liquor consisting of lemon juice mixed with water and sweetened.
LEMUR, n. [L.] A genus of quadrupeds, the Makis, natives of Africa and the East Indies.
LEMURES, n. [L.] Hobgoblins; evil spirits. [Not English.]
LEND, v.t. pret. and pp. lent.
1. To grant to another for temporary use, on the express or implied condition that the thing shall be returned; as, to lend a book; or
2. To grant a thing to be used, on the condition that its equivalent in kind shall be returned; as, to lend a sum of money, or a loaf of bread.
3. To afford; to grant; to furnish, in general; as, to lend assistance; to lend an ear to a discourse.
Cato, lend me for a while they patience.
4. To grant for temporary use, on condition of receiving a compensation at certain periods for the use of the thing, and an ultimate return of the thing, or its full value. Thus money is lent on condition of receiving interest for the use, and of having the principal sum returned at the stipulated time. Lend is correlative to borrow.
5. To permit to use for another’s benefit. A lent his name to obtain money from the bank.
6. To let for hire or compensation; as, to lend a horse or gig. [This sense is used by Paley, and probably may be common in England. But in the United States, I believe, the word is never thus used, except in reference to money. We lend money upon interest, but never lend a coach or horse for a compensation. We use let.]
LENDABLE, a. That may be lent.
1. One who lends.
The borrower is servant to the lender. Proverbs 22:7.
2. One who makes a trade of putting money to interest.
1. The act of loaning.
2. That which is lent or furnished.
LENDS, n. Loins. [Not in use.]
1. The extent of anything material from end to end; the longest line which can be drawn through a body, parallel to its sides; as the length of a church or of a ship; the length of a rope or line.
2. Extent; extension.
Stretch’d at his length he spurns the swarthy ground.
3. A certain extent; a portion of space; with a plural.
Large lengths of seas and shores -
4. Space of time; duration, indefinitely; as a great length of time. What length of time will this enterprise require for its accomplishment?
5. Long duration.
May heaven, great monarch, still augment your bliss, with length of days, and every day like this.
6. Reach or extent; as, to pursue a subject to a great length.
7. Extent; as the length of a discourse, essay, or argument.
He had marched to the length of Exeter.
[Unusual and inelegant.]
1. At length, at or in the full extent. Let the name be inserted at length.
2. At last; at the end or conclusion.
LENGTH, v.t. To extend. [Not used.]
LENGTHEN, v.t. length’n.
1. To extend in length; to make longer; to elongate; as, to lengthen a line.
2. To draw out or extend in time; to protract; to continue in duration; as, to lengthen life. The days lengthen from December to June.
3. To extend; as, to lengthen a discourse or a dissertation.
4. To draw out in pronunciation; as, to lengthen a sound or a syllable. This verb is often followed by out, which may be sometimes emphatical, but in general is useless.
What if I please to lengthen out his date?
LENGTHEN, v.i. To grow longer; to extend in length. A hempen rope contracts when wet, and lengthens when dry.
LENGTHENED, pp. Made longer; drawn out in length; continued in duration.
LENGTHENING, ppr. Making longer; extending in length or in duration.
LENGTHENING, n. Continuation; protraction. Daniel 4:27.
LENGTHFUL, a. Of great length in measure.
LENGTHWISE, adv. In the direction of the length; in a longitudinal direction.
LENGTHY, a. Being long or moderately long; not short; not brief; applied mostly to moral subjects, as to discourses, writings, arguments, proceedings, etc.; as a lengthy sermon; a lengthy dissertation; a lengthy detail.
No ministerial act in France, in matters of judicial cognizance, is done without a process verbal, in which the facts are stated amidst a great deal of lengthy formality, with a degree of minuteness, highly profitable to the verbalizing officers and to the revenue.
P. S. Murray has sent or will send a double copy of the Bride and Giaour; in the last one, some lengthy additions; pray accept them, according to old customs.
Chalmers’ Political Annals, in treating of South Carolina - is by no means as lengthy as Mr. Hewitt’s History.
LENIENT, a. [L. leniens, from lenio, lenis, soft, mild.]
1. Softening; mitigating; assuasive.
Time, that on all things lays his lenient hand, yet tames not this.
Sometimes with of; as lenient of grief.
2. Laxative; emollient.
Oils relax the fibers, are lenient, balsamic.
LENIENT, n. That which softens or assuages; an emollient.
LENIFY, v.t. To assuage; to soften; to mitigate. [Little used.]
LENIMENT, n. An assuasive. [Not used.]
LENITIVE, a. [L. lenio, to soften.]
Having the quality of softening or mitigating, as pain or acrimony; assuasive; emollient.
1. A medicine or application that has the quality of easing pain; that which softens or mitigates.
2. A palliative; that which abates passion.
LENITY, n. [L. lenitas, from lenis, mild, soft.]
Mildness of temper; softness; tenderness; mercy. Young offenders may be treated with lenity. It is opposed to severity and rigor.
LENS, n. plu. lenses. [L. lens, a lentil.] A transparent substance, usually glass, so formed that rays of light passing through it are made to change their direction, and to magnify or diminish objects at a certain distance. Lenses are double-convex, or convex on both sides; double-concave, or concave on both sides; plano-convex, or plano-concave, that is, with one side plane, and the other convex or concave; or convex on one side and concave on the other; the latter is called a meniscus.
LENT, pp. of lend.
The quadragesimal fast, or fast of forty days observed by the christian church before Easter, the festival of our Savior’s resurrection. It begins at Ash Wednesday, and continues till Easter.
LENTEN, a. Pertaining to lent; used in lent; sparing; as a lenten entertainment; a lenten salad.
LENTICULAR, a. [L. lenticularis, from lens, supra.]
1. Resembling a lentil.
2. Having the form of a lens; lentiform.
LENTICULARLY, adv. In the manner of a lens; with a curve.
LENTICULITE, n. A petrified shell.
LENTIFORM, a. [L. lens and forma, form.] Of the form of a lens.
LENTIGINOUS, a. [L. lentigo, a freckle, from L. lens.] Freckly; scurfy; furfuraceous.
LENTIGO, n. A freckly eruption on the skin.
LENTIL, n. [L. lens.] A plant of the genus Ervum. It is an annual plant, rising with weak stalks about 18 inches. The seeds, which are contained in a pod, are round, flat, and a little convex in the middle. It is cultivated for fodder, and for its seeds.
A tree of the genus Pistacia, the mastichtree, a native of Arabia, Persia, Syria, and the south of Europe. The wood is of a pale brown, resinous and fragrant. [See Mastich.]
LENTITUDE, n. [L. lectus, slow.] Slowness. [Not used.]
LENTNER, n. A kind of hawk.
LENTOR, n. [L. from lentus, slow, tough, clammy.]
1. Tenacity; viscousness.
2. Slowness; delay; sluggishness.
3. Siziness; thickness of fluids; viscidity; a term used in the humoral pathology.
LENTOUS, a. [L. lentus, slow, thick.] Viscid; viscous; tenacious.
LENZINITE, n. [from Lenzius, a German mineralogist.]
A mineral of two kinds, the opaline and argillaceous; a variety of clay, occurring usually in small masses of the size of a nut.
LEO, n. [L.] The Lion, the fifth sign of the zodiac.
LEONINE, a. [L. leoninus, from leo, lion.] Belonging to a lion; resembling a lion, or partaking of his qualities; as leonine fierceness or rapacity.
Leonine verses, so named from Leo, the inventor, are those, the end of which rhymes with the middle; as,
Gloria factorum temere conceditur horum.
LEONINELY, adv. In the manner of a lion.
LEOPARD, n. lep’ard. [L. leo, lion, and pardus, pard. Gr. from Heb. to separate, that is, spotted, broken into spots.]
A rapacious quadruped of the genus Felis. It differs from the panther and the once in the beauty of its color, which is of a lively yellow, with smaller spots than those of the two latter, and disposed in groups. It is larger than the once and less than the panther. This animal is found in Africa and Asia, and so rapacious as to spare neither man nor beast.
LEOPARD’S-BANE, n. A plant of the genus Doronicum. The German Leopard’s-bane is of the genus Arnica.
LEPER, n. [L. lepra, leprosy. Gr.] A person affected with leprosy.
LEPID, a. [L. lepidus.] Pleasant; jocose. [Little used.]
LEPIDOLITE, n. [Gr. a scale.] A mineral found in scaly masses, ordinarily of a violet or lilac color; allied to mica.
Lepidolite is of a peach-blossom red color, sometimes gray; massive and in small concretions. On account of its beautiful color, it has been cut into snuff-boxes. It is sometimes called lilalite.
LEPIDOPTER, LEPIDOPTERA, n. [Gr. a scale, and a wing.] The Lepidopteras are an order of insects having four wings covered with fine scales, like powder, as the butterfly.
LEPIDOPTERAL, a. Belonging to the order of Lepidopters.
LEPORINE, a. [L. leporinus, from lepus, a hare.]
Pertaining to a hare; having the nature or qualities of the hare.
LEPROSITY, n. Squamousness. [Little used.]
LEPROSY, n. [See Leper.] A foul cutaneous disease, appearing in dry, white, thin, scurfy scabs, attended with violent itching. It sometimes covers the whole body, rarely the face. One species of it is called elephantiasis.
The term leprosy is applied to two very distinct diseases, the scaly and the tuberculated, or the proper leprosy and the elephantiasis. The former is characterized by smooth laminated scales, sometimes livid, but usually whitish; in the latter, the skin is thickened, livid and tuberculated. It is called the black leprosy, but this term is also applied to the livid variety of the scaly leprosy.
His hand was leprous as snow. Exodus 4:6.
LEPROUSLY, adv. In an infectious degree.
LERE, n. Learning; lesson; lore. Obs.
LERE, v.t. To learn; to teach. Obs.
LESION, n. le’zhun. [L. lasio, from lado, to hurt.]
A hurting; hurt; wound; injury.
LESS, for unless. [Not in use.]
LESS, A terminating syllable of many nouns and some adjectives. Hence it is a privative word, denoting destitution; as a witless man, a man destitute of wit; childless, without children; fatherless; faithless; penniless; lawless, etc.
LESS, a. Smaller; not so large or great; as a less quantity or number; a horse of less size or value. We are all destined to suffer affliction in a greater or less degree.
LESS, adv. Not so much; in a smaller or lower degree; as less bright or loud; less beautiful; less obliging; less careful. The less a man praises himself, the more disposed are others to praise him.
1. Not so much.
They gathered some more, some less. Exodus 16:17.
2. An inferior.
The less is blessed by the better. Hebrews 7:7.
LESS, v.t. To make less. [Not in use.]
LESSEE, n. [from lease.] The person to whom a lease is given, or who takes an estate by lease.
LESSEN, v.t. les’n. [from less.]
1. To make less; to diminish; to reduce in bulk, size, quantity, number or amount; to make smaller; as, to lessen a kingdom or its population.
2. To diminish in degree, state of quality; as, awkward manners tend to lessen our respect for men of merit.
3. To degrade; to reduce in dignity.
St. Paul chose to magnify his office, when ill men conspired to lessen it.
LESSEN, v.i. les’n.
1. To become less; to shrink; to contract in bulk, quantity, number or amount; to be diminished. The apparent magnitude of objects lessens as we recede from them.
2. To become less in degree, quality or intensity; to decrease. The strength of the body, and the vivacity of the temper usually lessen as we advance in age.
LESSENED, pp. Made smaller; diminished.
LESSENING, ppr. Reducing in bulk, amount or degree; degrading.
LESSER, a. [This word is a corruption; but too well established to be discarded.]
Less; smaller. Authors always write the Lesser Asia.
By the same reason, may a man in a state of nature, punish the lesser breaches of that law.
God made the lesser light to rule the night. Genesis 1:16.
LESSON, n. les’n. [L. lectio, from lego, to read.]
1. Any thing read or recited to a teacher by a pupil or learner for improvement; or such a portion of a book as a pupil learns and repeats at one time. The instructor is pleased when his pupils recite their lessons with accuracy and promptness.
2. A portion of Scripture read in divine service. Thus endeth the first lesson.
3. A portion of a book or manuscript assigned by a preceptor to a pupil to be learnt, or for an exercise; something to be learnt. Give him his lesson.
4. Precept; doctrine or notion inculcated.
Be not jealous over the wife of thy bosom, and teach her not an evil lesson against thyself.
5. Severe lecture; reproof; rebuke.
She would give her a lesson for walking so late.
6. Tune written for an instrument.
7. Instruction or truth, taught by experience. The lessons which sickness imparts, she leaves to be practiced when health is established.
LESSON, v.t. les’n. To teach; to instruct.
Children should be lessoned into a contempt and detestation of this vice.
LESSONED, pp. Taught; instructed.
LESSONING, ppr. Teaching.
LESSOR, n. [from lease.] One who leases; the person who lets to farm, or gives a lease.
LEST, con. That not; for fear that.
Ye shall not eat of it, neither shall ye touch it, lest ye die. Genesis 3:3.
The phrase may be thus explained. Ye shall not touch it; that separated or dismissed, ye die. That here refers to the preceding command or sentence; that being removed or not observed, the fact being not so, ye will die.
Sin no more, lest a worse thing come to thee. John 5:14.
Sin no more; that fact not taking place, a worse thing will happen to thee.
LET, v.t. pret. and pp. let. Letted is obsolete. [To let out, like L. elocare, is to lease.]
1. To permit; to allow; to suffer; to give leave or power by a positive act, or negatively, to withhold restraint; not to prevent. A leaky ship lets water enter into the hold. Let is followed by the infinitive without the sign to.
Pharaoh said, I will let you go. Exodus 8:28.
When the ship was caught and could not bear up into the wind, we let her drive. Acts 27:15.
2. To lease; to grant possession and use for a compensation; as, to let to farm; to let an estate for a year; to let a room to lodgers; often followed by out, as, to let out a farm; but the use of out is unnecessary.
3. To suffer; to permit; with the usual sign of the infinitive.
There’s a letter for you, Sir, if your name be Horatio, as I am let to know it is. [Not used.]
4. In the imperative mode, let has the following uses. Followed by the first and third persons, it expresses desire or wish; hence it is used in prayer and entreaty to superiors, and to those who have us in their power; as, let me not wander from thy commandments. Psalm 119:10.
Followed by the first person plural, let expresses exhortation or entreaty; as, rise, let us go.
Followed by the third person, it implies permission or command addressed to an inferior. Let him go, let them remain, are commands addressed to the second person. Let thou, or let ye, that is, do thou or you permit him to go.
Sometimes let is used to express a command or injunction to a third person. When the signal is given to engage, let every man do his duty.
When applied to things not rational, it implies allowance or concession.
O’er golden sands let rich Pactolus flow.
5. To retard; to hinder; to impede; to interpose obstructions. 2 Thessalonians 2:7.
[This sense is now obsolete, or nearly so.]
To let alone, to leave; to suffer to remain without intermeddling; as, let alone this idle project; let me alone.
To let down, to permit to sink or fall; to lower.
She let them down by a cord through the window. Joshua 2:15.
To let loose, to free from restraint; to permit to wander at large.
To let in or into, to permit or suffer to enter; to admit. Open the door, let in my friend. We are not let into the secrets of the cabinet.
To let blood, to open a vein and suffer the blood to flow out.
To let out, to suffer to escape; also, to lease or let to hire.
To let off, to discharge, to let fly, as an arrow; or cause to explode, as a gun.
LET, v.i. To forbear. Obs.
LET, n. A retarding; hinderance; obstacle; impediment; delay. [Obsolete, unless in some technical phrases.]
LET, a termination of diminutives; as hamlet, a little house; rivulet, a small stream. [See Little.]
LETHAL, a. [L. lethalis, mortal, from Gr. oblivion.] Deadly; mortal; fatal.
LETHALITY, n. Mortality.
LETHARGIC, LETHARGICAL, a. [L. lethargicus.] Preternaturally inclined to sleep; drowsy; dull; heavy.
LETHARGICALLY, adv. In a morbid sleepiness.
LETHARGICALNESS, LETHARGICNESS, n. Preternatural or morbid sleepiness or drowsiness.
LETHARGIED, pp. or a. Laid asleep; entranced.
LETHARGY, n. [L. lethargia; Gr. oblivion and idle.]
1. Preternatural sleepiness; morbid drowsiness; continued or profound sleep, from which a person can scarcely be awaked, and if awaked, remains stupid.
2. Dullness; inaction; inattention.
Europe lay them under a deep lethargy.
LETHARGY, v.t. To make lethargic or dull.
LETHE, n. le’thee. [Gr. forgetfulness; L. lateo, to be hid.] Oblivion; a draught of oblivion.
LETHEAN, a. Inducing forgetfulness or oblivion.
LETHIFEROUS, a. [L. lethum, death, and fero, to bring.]
Deadly; mortal; bringing death or destruction.
LETTER, n. [from let.]
1. One who permits.
2. One who retards or hinders.
3. One who gives vent; as a blood-letter.
LETTER, n. [L. litera.]
1. A mark or character, written, printed, engraved or painted; used as the representative of a sound, or of an articulation of the human organs of speech. By sounds, and articulations or closures of the organs, are formed syllables and words. Hence a letter is the first element of written language, as a simple sound is the first element of spoken language or speech. As sounds are audible and communicate ideas to others by the ear, so letters are visible representatives of sounds, and communicate the thoughts of others by means of the eye.
2. A written or printed message; an epistle; a communication made by visible characters from one person to another at a distance.
The style of letters ought to be free, easy and natural.
3. The verbal expression; the literal meaning.
We must observe the letter of the law, without doing violence to the reason of the law, and the intentions of the lawgiver.
4. Type; a charter formed of metal or wood, usually of metal, and used in printing books.
5. Letters, in the plural, learning; erudition; as a man of letters.
Dead letter, a writing or precept, which is without authority or force. The best law may become a dead letter.
Letter of attorney, a writing by which one person authorizes another to act in his stead.
Letter of marque, a private ship commissioned or authorized by a government to make reprisals on the ships of another state. [See Marque.]
Letters patent, or overt, open, a writing executed and sealed, by which power and authority are granted to a person to do some act, or enjoy some right; as letters patent under the seal of England.
LETTER, v.t. To impress or form letters on; as, to letter a book; a book gilt and lettered.
LETTER-CASE, n. A case or book to put letters in.
LETTERED, pp. Stamped with letters.
1. Literate; educated; versed in literature or science.
LETTER-FOUNDER, n. One who casts letters; a type-founder.
LETTERING, ppr. Impressing or forming letters on; as lettering a book on the cover.
LETTERLESS, a. Illiterate; unlettered; not learned.
LETTER-PRESS, n. [letter and press.] Print; letters and words impressed on paper or other material by types.
LETTUCE, n. let’tis. [L. lactuca, according to Varro, from lac, milk.]
A genus of plants, the Lactuca, of many species, some of which are used as salads.
LEUCIN, LEUCINE, n. [Gr. white.] A peculiar white pulverulent substance obtained from beef-fibers, treated with sulphuric acid, and afterwards with alcohol.
LEUCITE, n. [Gr. white.] A stony substance, so called from its whiteness, found among volcanic productions in Italy, in crystals, or in irregular masses; formerly called crystals of white shorl, or white granite or granilite.
Hauy called this mineral, amphigene. It is called by some writers leucolite, and by others, dodecahedral zeolite.
LEUCO-ETHIOPIC, a. [Gr. white, and black.]
White and black; designating a white animal of a black species, or the albino.