Noah Webster’s 1828 Dictionary



LILT, v.i.

1. To do any thing with dexterity or quickness. [Local.]

2. To sing or play on the bagpipe.

LILY, n. [L. lilium; Gr.] A genus of plants of many species, which are all bulbous-rooted, herbaceous perennials, producing bell-shaped, hexapetalous flowers of great beauty and variety of colors.

Lily of the valley, a plant of the genus convallaria, with a monopetalous, bell-shaped corol, divided at the top into six segments.

LILY-DAFFODIL, n. A plant and flower.

LILY-HANDED, a. Having white delicate hands.

LILY-HYACINTH, n. A plant.

LILY-LIVERED, a. White-livered; cowardly. [Not used.]

LIMATION, n. [L. limo, to file.] The act of filing or polishing.

LIMATURE, n. [L. limo, to file.]

1. A filing.

2. Filings; particles rubbed off by filing.

LIMB, n. lim. [L. limbus, edge or border, extremity; limes, limit. The sense of limb is from shooting or extending.]

1. Edge or border. This is the proper signification of the word; but in this sense it is limited chiefly to technical use, and applied to the sun, moon, or a star, to a leaf, to a quadrant, etc. We say, the sun or moon is eclipsed on its northern limb. But we never say, the limb of a board, of a tract of land or water, etc.

2. In anatomy, and in common use, an extremity of the human body; a member; a projecting part; as the arm or leg; that is, a shoot.

3. The branch of a tree; applied only to a branch of some size, and not to a small twig.

4. In botany, the border or upper spreading part of a monopetalous corol.

LIMB, v.t. lim.

1. To supply with limbs.

2. To dismember; to tear off the limbs.

LIMBAT, n. A cooling periodical wind in the isle of Cyprus, blowing from the north west from eight o’clock, A.M. to the middle of the day or later.

LIMBEC, n. [contracted from alembic.] A still; a word not now used.

LIMBEC, v.t. To strain or pass through a still. Obs.

LIMBED, a. In composition, formed with regard to limbs; as well-limbed; large-limbed; short-limbed.

LIMBER, a. Easily bent; flexible; pliant; yielding. In America, it is applied to material things; as a limber rod; a limber joint.

LIMBER, n. In a ship, a square hole cut through the floor timbers, as a passage for water to the pump-well.

LIMBERNESS, n. The quality of being easily bent; flexibleness; pliancy.


1. A two-wheeled carriage, having boxes for ammunition.

2. Thills; shafts of a carriage. [Local.]

LIMBILITE, n. A mineral from Limbourg, in Swabia, of a honey yellow color, and compact texture.

LIMBLESS, a. Destitute of limbs.

LIMB-MEAL, a. Piece-meal.

LIMBO, LIMBUS, n. [L. limbus.]

1. A region bordering on hell, or hell itself.

Among catholics, a place where the souls of persons are lodged after death.

2. A place of restraint.

LIME, n. [L. limus; Gr. and allied to clammy. On this word is formed slime.]

1. A viscous substance, sometimes laid on twigs for catching birds.

2. Calcarious earth, oxyd of calcium, procured from chalk and certain stones and shells, by expelling from them the carbonic acid, by means of a strong heat in a furnace. The best lime for mortar or cement is obtained from limestone, or carbonate of lime, of which marble is a fine species.

3. The linden tree.

4. [See Lemon.] A species of acid fruit, smaller than the lemon.

LIME, v.t.

1. To smear with a viscous substance.

2. To entangle; to ensnare.

3. To manure with lime.

Land may be improved by draining, marling and liming.

4. To cement.

LIME-BURNER, n. One who burns stones to lime.

LIMED, pp. Smeared with lime; entangled; manured with lime.

LIMEHOUND, n. A dog used in hunting the wild boar; a limer.

LIMEKILN, n. li’mekil. A kiln or furnace in which stones or shells are exposed to a strong heat and reduced to lime.

LIMESTONE, n. Stone of which lime is made by the expulsion of its carbonic acid, or fixed air. It is called carbonate of lime. Of this there are several species.

LIMETWIG, n. A twig smeared with lime.

LIMETWIGGED, a. Smeared with lime.

LIMEWATER, n. Water impregnated with lime.

LIMING, ppr. Daubing with viscous matter; entangling; manuring with lime.

LIMIT, n. [L. limes. See Limb.]

1. Bound; border; utmost extent; the part that terminates a thing; as the limit of a town, city or empire; the limits of human knowledge.

2. The thing which bounds; restraint.

3. Limits, plu., the extent of the liberties of a prison.

LIMIT, v.t.

1. To bound; to set bounds to.

2. To confine within certain bounds; to circumscribe; to restrain. The government of England is a limited monarchy.

They tempted God and limited the Holy One of Israel. Psalm 78:41.

3. To restrain from a lax or general signification. World sometimes signifies the universe, and sometimes its signification is limited to this earth.

LIMITABLE, a. That may be limited, circumscribed, bounded or restrained.

LIMITANEOUS, a. Pertaining to bounds.

LIMITARIAN, a. That limits or circumscribes.

LIMITARIAN, n. One that limits; one who holds the doctrine that a part of the human race only are to be saved; opposed to universalist.

LIMITARY, a. Placed at the limit, as a guard.

- Proud limitary cherub.

LIMITATION, n. [L. limitatio.]

1. The act of bounding or circumscribing.

2. Restriction; restraint; circumscription. The king consented to a limitation of his prerogatives. Government by the limitation of natural rights secures civil liberty.

3. Restriction; confinement from a lax indeterminate import. Words of general import are often to be understood with limitations.

4. A certain precinct within which friars were allowed to beg or exercise their functions.


1. Bounded; circumscribed; restrained.

2. a. Narrow; circumscribed. Our views of nature are very limited.

LIMITEDLY, adv. With limitation.

LIMITEDNESS, n. State of being limited.


1. He or that which limits or confines.

2. A friar licensed to beg within certain bounds, or whose duty was limited to a certain district.

LIMITLESS, a. Having no limits; unbounded.


1. A limehound; a mongrel.

2. A dog engendered between a hound and a mastiff.

3. A thill or shaft. [Local. See Limber.]

4. A thill-horse. [Local.]

LIMN, v.t. lim. [L. lumino.] To draw or paint; or to paint in water colors.

LIMNED, pp. lim’med. Painted.

LIMNER, n. [L. illuminator, in the middle ages, alluminor.]

1. One that colors or paints on paper or parchment; one who decorates books with initial pictures.

2. A portrait painter.

LIMNING, ppr. Drawing; painting; painting in water colors.

LIMNING, n. The act or art of drawing or painting in water colors.

LIMOUS, a. [L. limosus, from limus, slime.] Muddy; slimy; thick.

LIMP, v.i. To halt; to walk lamely.

LIMP, n. A halt; act of limping.
LIMP, a. Vapid; weak. [Not used.]

LIMPER, n. One that limps.

LIMPET, n. [L. lepas; Gr. from to peel or strip off bark.]

A univalve shell of the genus Patella, adhering to rocks.

LIMPID, a. [L. limpidus.] Pure; clear; transparent; as a limpid stream.

LIMPIDNESS, n. Clearness; purity.

LIMPING, ppr. Halting; walking lamely.

LIMPINGLY, adv. Lamely; in a halting manner.

LIMSY, a. Weak; flexible.

LIMY, a. [See Lime.]

1. Viscous; glutinous; as limy snares.

2. Containing lime; as a limy soil.

3. Resembling lime; having the qualities of lime.

LIN, v.i. To yield. Obs.

LIN, n. A pool or mere. [Not used.]


A pin used to prevent the wheel of a carriage from sliding off the axle-tree.

LINCTURE, n. [L. lingo, linctus.] Medicine taken by licking.


The lime-tree, or teil-tree, of the genus Tilia.

LINE, n. [L. linea, linum; Gr. flax.]

1. In geometry, a quantity extended in length, without breadth or thickness; or a limit terminating a surface.

2. A slender string; a small cord or rope. The angler uses a line and hook. The seaman uses a hand line, a hauling line, spilling lines, etc.

3. A thread, string or cord extended to direct any operation.

We as by line upon the ocean go.

4. Lineament; a mark in the hand or face.

He tipples palmistry, and dines on all her fortune-telling lines.

5. Delineation; sketch; as the lines of a building.

6. Contour; outline; exterior limit of a figure.

Free as thy stroke, yet faultless as thy line.

7. In writing, printing and engraving, the words and letters which stand on a level in one row, between one margin and another; as a page of thirty lines.

8. In poetry, a verse, or the words which form a certain number of feet, according to the measure.

9. A short letter; a note. I received a line from my friend by the last mail.

10. A rank or row of soldiers, or the disposition of an army drawn up with an extended front; or the like disposition of a fleet prepared for engagement.

11. A trench or rampart; an extended work in fortification.

Unite thy forces and attack their lines.

12. Method; disposition; as line of order.

13. Extension; limit; border.

Eden stretched her line from Auran eastward to the royal towers of great Seleucia.

14. Equator; equinoctial circle.

When the sun below the line descends -

15. A series or succession of progeny or relations, descending from a common progenitor. We speak of the ascending or descending line; the line of descent; the male line; a line of kings.

16. The twelfth part of an inch.

17. A straight extended mark.

18. A straight or parallel direction. The houses must all stand in a line. Every new building must be set in a line with other on the same street.

19. Occupation; employment; department or course of business. We speak of men in the same line of business.

20. Course; direction.

What general line of conduct ought to be pursued?

21. Lint or flax. [Seldom used.]

22. In heraldry, lines are the figures used in armories to divide the shield into different parts, and to compose different figures.

23. In Scripture, line signifies a cord for measuring; also, instruction, doctrine. Psalm 19:4; Isaiah 28:10, 13, 17.

A right line, a straight or direct line; the shortest line that can be drawn between two points.

Horizontal line, a line drawn parallel to the horizon.

Equinoctial line, in geography, a great circle on the earth’s surface, at 90 degrees distance from each pole, and bisecting the earth at that part. In astronomy, the circle which the sun seems to describe, in March and September, when the days and nights are of equal length.

Meridian line, an imaginary circle drawn through the two poles of the earth, and any part of its surface.

A ship of the line, a ship of war large enough to have a place in the line of battle. All ships carrying seventy four or more large guns, are ships of the line. Smaller ships may sometimes be so called.

LINE, v.t. [supposed to be from L. linum, flax, whence linen, which is often used for linings.]

1. To cover on the inside; as a garment lined with linen, fur or silk; a box lined with paper or tin.

2. To put in the inside.

- What if I do line one of their hands?

3. To place along by the side of any thing for guarding; as, to line a hedge with riflemen; to line works with soldiers.

4. To strengthen by additional works or men.

Line and new repair your towns of war with men of courage.

5. To cover; to add a covering; as, to line a crutch.

6. To strengthen with any thing added.

Who lined himself with hope.

7. To impregnate; applied to irrational animals.


Race; progeny; descendants in a line from a common progenitor.

LINEAL, a. [L. linealis, from linea, line.]

1. Composed of lines; delineated; as lineal designs.

2. In a direct line from an ancestor; as lineal descent; lineal succession.

3. Hereditary; derived from ancestors.

4. Allied by direct descent.

For only you are lineal to the throne.

5. In the direction of a line; as lineal measure.

Lineal measure, the measure of length.

LINEALITY, n. The state of being in the form of a line.

LINEALLY, adv. In a direct line; as, the prince is lineally descended from the conqueror.

LINEAMENT, n. [L. lineamentum.]

Feature; form; make; the outline or exterior of a body or figure, particularly of the face.

Man he seems in all his lineaments.

- The lineaments of the body.

- Lineaments of a character.

LINEAR, a. [L. linearis.]

1. Pertaining to a line; consisting of lines; in a straight direction.

2. In botany, like a line; slender; of the same breadth throughout, except at the extremities; as linear leaf.

Linear numbers, in mathematics, such as have relation to length only; such is a number which represents one side of a plane figure. If the plane figure is a square, the linear figure is called a root.

Linear problem, that which may be solved geometrically by the intersection of two right lines.

LINEATE, a. In botany, marked longitudinally with depressed parallel lines; as a lineate leaf.

LINEATION, n. Draught; delineation, which see.

LINED, pp. Covered on the inside.

LINEN, n. [L. linun, flax, Gr. The sense is probably long, extended or smooth. In the latter sense, it would accord with L. linio, lenio.]

1. Cloth made of flax or hemp.

2. An under garment.

LINEN, a. [L. lineus.]

1. Made of flax or hemp; as linen cloth; a linen stocking.

2. Resembling linen cloth; white; pale.

Fossil-linen, a kind of amianth, with soft, parallel, flexible fibers.

LINEN-DRAPER, n. A person who deals in linens.

Linener and linen-man, in a like sense, are obsolete.

LING, n.

A fish of the genus Gadus, or cod kind, which grows to the length of four feet or more, is very slender, with a flat head. This fish abounds on the coasts of Scotland and Ireland, and forms a considerable article of commerce.

LING, n. A species of long grass; heath.

LINGER, v.i.

1. To delay; to loiter; to remain or wait long; to be slow.

Nor cast one longing, lingering look behind.

Whose judgment now of a long time lingereth not. 2 Peter 2:3.

2. To hesitate; to be slow in deciding; to be in suspense.

Perhaps thou lingerest, in deep thought detained.

3. To remain long in any state. The patient lingers on a bed of sickness.

LINGER, v.t. To protract.

LINGERER, n. One who lingers.


1. Delaying; loitering.

2. a. Drawing out in time; remaining long; protracted; as a lingering disease.

To die is the fate of man; but to die with lingering anguish is generally his folly.

LINGERING, n. A delaying; a remaining long; tardiness; protraction.

The lingerings of holyday customs.

LINGERINGLY, adv. With delay; slowly; tediously.

LINGET, n. A small mass of metal.

LINGLE, n. Shoemaker’s thread. [Not in use or local.]

LINGO, n. [L. lingua.] Language; speech. [Vulgar.]

LINGUADENTAL, a. [L. lingua, tongue, and dens, a tooth.]

Formed or uttered by the joint use of the tongue and teeth; as the letters d and t.

LINGUADENTAL, n. An articulation formed by the tongue and teeth.

LINGUAFORM, a. [lingua and form.] Having the form or shape of the tongue.

LINGUAL, a. [L. lingua, the tongue.] Pertaining to the tongue; as the lingual nerves, the ninth pair, which go to the tongue; the lingual muscle, or muscle of the tongue.

LINGUIST, n. [L. lingua, tongue.] A person skilled in languages; usually applied to a person well versed in the languages taught in colleges, Greek, Latin, and Hebrew.

LINGULATE, a. [L. lingulatus, from lingua, tongue.]

Shaped like the tongue or a strap. [But ligulate is more generally used.]

LINGWORT, n. An herb.

LINIMENT, n. [L. linimentum. from linio, lino, to anoint.]

A species of soft ointment; a composition of a consistence somewhat thinner than an unguent, but thicker than oil

LINING, ppr. [See Line.] Covering on the inside, as a garment.


1. The inner covering of any thing, as of a garment or a box. The pleura is called the lining of the thorax.

2. That which is within.

LINK, n.

1. A single ring or division of a chain.

2. Any thing doubled and closed like a link; as a link of horse hair.

3. A chain; any thing connecting.

- And love, the common link, the new creation crowned.

4. Any single constituent part of a connected series. This argument is a link in the chain of reasoning.

5. A series; a chain.

LINK, n. [Gr.; L. lychnus, a lamp or candle, coinciding in elements with light.]

A torch made of tow or hards, etc., and pitch.

LINK, v.t.

1. To complicate.

2. To unite or connect by something intervening or in other manner.

- Link towns to towns by avenues of oak.

- And creature link’d to creature, man to man.

LINK, v.i. To be connected.

LINKBOY, LINKMAN, n. A boy or man that carries a link or torch to light passengers.

LINKED, pp. United; connected.

LINKING, ppr. Uniting; connecting.

LINNET, n. [L. carduelis, from carduus, a thistle.]

A small singing bird of the genus Fingilla.

LINSEED. [See Lintseed.]

LINSEY-WOOLSEY, a. Made of linen and wool; hence, vile; mean; of different and unsuitable parts.

LINSTOCK, n. [lint and stock.] A pointed staff with a crotch or fork at one end, to hold a lighted match; used in firing cannon. It may be stuck in the ground or in the deck of a ship.

LINT, n. [L. linteum, linteus, from linium, flax.]

Flax; but more generally, linen scraped into a soft substance, and used for dressing wounds and sores.


The head-piece of a door-frame or window-frame; the part of the frame that lies on the side-pieces. Exodus 12:22-23.

LINTSEED, n. Flaxseed.

LION, n. [L. leo, leonis, Gr.]

1. A quadruped of the genus Felis, very strong, fierce and rapacious. The largest lions are eight or nine feet in length. The male has a thick head, beset with long bushy hair of a yellowish color. The lion is a native of Africa and the warm climates of Asia. His aspect is noble, his gait stately, and his roar tremendous.

2. A sign in the zodiac.

LIONESS, n. The female of the lion kind.

LIONLIKE, a. Like a lion; fierce.