Noah Webster’s 1828 Dictionary



REFRANGIBILITY, n. [from refrangible.]

The disposition of rays of light to be refracted or turned out of a direct course, in passing out of one transparent body or medium into another.

REFRANGIBLE, a. [L. re and frango, to break.]

Capable of being refracted or turned out of a direct course in passing from one medium to another; as rays of light.

REFRENATION, n. [See Refrain.] The act of restraining. [Not used.]

REFRESH, v.t. [See Fresh.]

1. To cool; to allay heat.

A dew coming after a heat refresheth.

2. To give new strength to; to invigorate; to relieve after fatigue; as, to refresh the body. A man or a beast is refreshed by food and rest. Exodus 23:12.

3. To revive; to reanimate after depression; to cheer; to enliven.

For they have refreshed my spirit and yours. 1 Corinthians 16:18.

4. To improve by new touches any thing impaired.

The rest refresh the scaly snakes.

5. To revive what is drooping; as, rain refreshes the plants.

REFRESH, n. Act of refreshing. [Not used.]

REFRESHED, pp. Cooled; invigorated; revived; cheered.

REFRESHER, n. He or that which refreshes, revives or invigorates.

REFRESHING, ppr. or a. Cooling; invigorating; reviving; reanimating.

REFRESHING, n. Refreshment; relief after fatigue or suffering.


1. Act of refreshing; or new strength or vigor received after fatigue; relief after suffering; applied to the body.

2. New life or animation after depression; applied to the mind or spirits.

3. That which gives fresh strength or vigor, as food or rest.

REFRET, n. The burden of a song.

REFRIGERANT, a. [See Refrigerate.]

Cooling; allaying heat.

REFRIGERANT, n. Among physicians, a medicine which abates heat and refreshes the patient.

REFRIGERATE, v.t. [L. refrigero; re and frigus, cold.] To cool; to allay the heat of; to refresh.


REFRIGERATING, ppr. Allaying heat; cooling.

REFRIGERATION, n. The act of cooling; the abatement of heat; state of being cooled.


REFRIGERATIVE, n. A remedy that allays heat.

REFRIGERATORY, a. Cooling; mitigating heat.


1. In distillation, a vessel filled with cold water, through which the worm passes; by which means the vapors are condensed as they pass through the worm.

2. Any thing internally cooling.

REFRIGERIUM, n. [L.] Cooling refreshment; refrigeration. [Not in use.]

REFT, pp. of reave.

1. Deprived; bereft. [Not in use.]

2. pret. of reave. Took away. [Not in use.]

REFT, n. A chink. [See Rift.]

REFUGE, n. [L. refugium, refugio; re and fugio, to flee.]

1. Shelter or protection from danger or distress.

- Rocks, dens and caves, but I in none of these find place or refuge.

We have made lies our refuge. Isaiah 28:17.

- We might have strong consolation, who have fled for refuge to lay hold on the hope set before us. Hebrews 6:18.

2. That which shelters or protects from danger, distress or calamity; a strong hold which protects by its strength, or a sanctuary which secures safety by its sacredness; any place inaccessible to an enemy.

The high hills are a refuge for the wild goats. Psalm 104:18.

The Lord also will be a refuge for the oppressed. Psalm 9:9.

3. An expedient to secure protection or defense.

This last old man - their latest refuge was to send to him.

4. Expedient, in general.

Light must be supplied, among graceful refuges, by terracing any story in danger of darkness.

Cities of refuge, among the Israelites, certain cities appointed to secure the safety of such persons as might commit homicide without design. Of these there were three on each side of Jordan. Joshua 20:2-3.

REFUGE, v.t. To shelter; to protect.


1. One who flies to a shelter or place of safety.

2. One who, in times of persecution or political commotion, flees to a foreign country for safety; as the French refugees, who left France after the revocation of the edict of Nantz, and settled in Flanders and America; the refugees from Hispaniola, in 1792; and the American refugees, who left their country at the revolution.

REFULGENCE, REFULGENCY, n. [L. refulgens, refulgeo; re and fulgeo, to shine.] A flood of light; splendor.

REFULGENT, a. Casting a bright light; shining; splendid; as refulgent beams; refulgent light; refulgent arms.

A conspicuous and refulgent truth.

REFULGENTLY, adv. With a flood of light; with great brightness.

REFUND, v.t. [L. refundo; re and fundo, to pour.]

1. To pour back.

Were the humors of the eye tinctured with any color, they would refund that color upon the object. [Unusual or obsolete.]

2. To repay; to return in payment or compensation for what has been taken; to restore; as, to refund money taken wrongfully; to refund money advanced with interest; to refund the amount advanced.

REFUNDED, pp. Poured back; repaid.

REFUNDING, ppr. Pouring back; returning by payment or compensation.

REFUSABLE, a. s as z. [from refuse.] That may be refused.

REFUSAL, n. s as z.

1. The act of refusing; denial of any thing demanded, solicited or offered for acceptance. The first refusal is not always proof that the request will not be ultimately granted.

2. The right of taking in preference to others; the choice of taking or refusing; option; pre-emption. We say, a man has the refusal of a farm or a horse, or the refusal of an employment.

REFUSE, v.t. s as z. [L. recuso; re and the root of causor, to accuse; causa, cause. The primary sense of causor is to drive, to throw or thrust at, and recuso is to drive back, to repel or repulse, the sense of refuse.]

1. To deny a request, demand, invitation or command; to decline to do or grant what is solicited, claimed or commanded.

Thus Edom refused to give Israel passage through his border. Numbers 20:21.

2. To decline to accept what is offered; as, to refuse an office; to refuse an offer.

If they refuse to take the cup at thy hand - Jeremiah 25:28.

3. To reject; as, to refuse instruction or reproof. Proverbs 10:17.

The stone which the builders refused is become the head of the corner. Psalm 118:22.

[Note - Refuse expenses rejection more strongly than decline.]

REFUSE, v.i. s as z. To decline to accept; not to comply.

Too proud to ask, to humble too refuse.


Literally, refused; rejected; hence, worthless; of no value; left as unworthy of reception; as the refuse parts of stone or timber.

Please to bestow on him the refuse letters.

REFUSE, n. That which is refused or rejected as useless; waste matter.
REFUSE, n. Refusal. Obs.

REFUSED, pp. Denied; rejected; not accepted.

REFUSER, n. One that refuses or rejects.

REFUSING, ppr. Denying; declining to accept; rejecting.

REFUTABLE, a. [from refute.] That may be refuted or disproved; that may be proved false or erroneous.

REFUTAL, n. Refutation. [Not used.]

REFUTATION, n. [L. refutatio. See Refute.]

The act or process of refuting or disproving; the act of proving to be false or erroneous; the overthrowing of an argument, opinion, testimony, doctrine or theory, by argument or countervailing proof.

REFUTE, v.t. [L. refuto; re and futo, Obs. The primary sense of futo, is to drive or thrust, to beat back.]

To disprove and overthrow by argument, evidence or countervailing proof; to prove to be false or erroneous; to confute. We say, to refute arguments, to refute testimony, to refute opinions or theories, to refute a disputant.

There were so many witnesses to these two miracles, that it is impossible to refute such multitudes.

REFUTED, pp. Disproved; proved to be false or erroneous.

REFUTER, n. One that refutes.

REFUTING, ppr. Proving to be false or erroneous; confuting.

REGAIN, v.t. [re and gain.]

To gain anew; to recover what has escaped or been lost.

REGAINED, pp. Recovered; gained anew.

REGAINING, ppr. Gaining anew; recovering.

REGAL, a. [L. regalis, from rex, L. rectus. See Reck and Reckon.]

Pertaining to a king; kingly; royal; as a regal title; regal authority; regal state, pomp or splendor; regal power or sway. But we say, a royal or kingly government, not a regal one. We never say, a regal territory, regal dominions, regal army, or regal navy. Regal expresses what is more personal.

REGAL, n. A musical instrument.

REGALE, n. The prerogative of monarchy.

REGALE, n. [See the verb, below.] A magnificent entertainment or treat given to embassadors and other persons of distinction.
REGALE, v.t. [Eng. gale, gallant, jolly; Gr.]

To refresh; to entertain with something that delights; to gratify, as the senses; as, to regale the taste, the eye or the ear. The birds of the forest regale us with their songs.

REGALE, v.t. To feast; to fare sumptuously.

REGALED, pp. Refreshed; entertained; gratified.

REGALEMENT, n. Refreshment; entertainment; gratification.

REGALIA, n. [L. from rex, king.]

1. Ensigns of royalty; the apparatus of a coronation; as the crown, scepter, etc.

2. In law, the rights and prerogatives of a king.

REGALING, ppr. Refreshing; entertaining; gratifying.

REGALITY, n. [from L. regalis.] Royalty; sovereignty; kingship.

He came partly in by the sword and had high courage in all points of regality.

REGALLY, adv. In a royal manner.

REGARD, v.t.

1. To look towards; to point or be directed.

It is a peninsula which regardeth the main land.

2. To observe; to notice with some particularity.

If much you note him, you offend him; feed and regard him not.

3. To attend to with respect and estimation; to value.

This aspect of mine, the best regarded virgins of your clime have lov’d.

4. To attend to as a thing that affects our interest or happiness; to fix the mind on as a matter of importance. He does not regard the pain he feels. He does not regard the loss he has suffered. He regards only the interest of the community.

5. To esteem; to hold in respect and affection. The people regard their pastor, and treat him with great kindness. 2 Kings 3:14.

6. To keep; to observe with religious or solemn attention.

He that regardeth the day, regardeth it to the Lord. Romans 14:6.

7. To attend to as something to influence our conduct.

He that regardeth the clouds shall not reap. Ecclesiastes 11:4.

8. To consider seriously; to lay to heart.

They regard not the work of the Lord. Isaiah 5:12.

9. To notice with pity or concern. Deuteronomy 28:50.

10. To notice favorably or with acceptance; to hear and answer.

He will regard the prayer of the destitute. Psalm 102:17.

11. To love and esteem; to practice; as, to regard iniquity in the heart. Psalm 66:18.

12. To respect; to have relation to. The argument does not regard the question.

To regard the person, to value for outward honor, wealth or power. Matthew 22:16.


1. Look; aspect directed to another.

But her with stern regard he thus repell’d.

[Nearly or quite obsolete.]

2. Attention of the mind; respect in relation to something. He has no regard to the interest of society; his motives are wholly selfish.

3. Respect; esteem; reverence; that view of the mind which springs from value, estimable qualities, or any thing that excites admiration.

With some regard to what is just and right they’ll lead their lives.

To him they had regard, because of long time he had bewitched them with sorceries. Acts 8:11.

4. Respect; account.

Change was thought necessary, in regard of the injury the church received by a number of things then in use.

5. Relation; reference.

To persuade them to pursue and preserve in virtue, in regard to themselves; in justice and goodness, in regard to their neighbors; and piety towards God.

6. Note; eminence; account.

Mac Ferlagh was a man of meanest regard among them.

7. Matter demanding notice.

8. Prospect; object of sight. [Not proper nor in use.]

9. In the forest laws, view; inspection.

Court of regard, or survey of dogs, a forest court in England, held every third year for the lawing or expeditation of mastifs, that is, for cutting off the claws and ball of the fore feet, to prevent them from running after deer.

REGARDABLE, a. Observable; worthy of notice.


1. In law, a villain regardant is one annexed to the manor or land.

2. In heraldry, looking behind, as a lion or other beast.

REGARDED, pp. Noticed; observed; esteemed; respected.


1. One that regards.

2. In law, the regarder of the forest is an officer whose business is to view the forest, inspect the officers, and inquire of all offenses and defaults.

REGARDFUL, a. Taking notice; heedful; observing with care; attentive.

Let a man be very tender and regardful of every pious motion made by the Spirit of God on his heart.


1. Attentively; heedfully.

2. Respectfully.


1. Noticing; considering with care; attending to; observing; esteeming; caring for.

2. Respecting; concerning; relating to.


1. Not looking or attending to; heedless; negligent; careless; as regardless of life or of health; regardless of danger; regardless of consequences.

Regardless of the bliss wherein he sat.

2. Not regarded; slighted.

REGARDLESSLY, adv. Heedlessly; carelessly; negligently.

REGARDLESSNESS, n. Heedlessness; inattention; negligence.

REGATA, REGATTA, n. In Venice, a grand rowing match in which many boats are rowed for a prize.

REGATHER, v.t. To gather or collect a second time.

REGATHERED, pp. Collected again.

REGATHERING, ppr. Gathering a second time.

REGEL, REGIL, n. A fixed star of the first magnitude in Orion’s left foot.

REGENCY, n. [L. regens, from rego, to govern.]

1. Rule’ authority; government.

2. Vicarious government.

3. The district under the jurisdiction of a vicegerent.

4. The body of men entrusted with vicarious government; as a regency constituted during a king’s minority, insanity, or absence from the kingdom.

REGENERACY, n. [See Regenerate.] The state of being regenerated.

REGENERATE, v.t. [L. regenero; re and genero. See Generate.]

1. To generate or produce anew; to reproduce.

Through all the soil a genial ferment spreads, regenerates the plants and new adorns the meads.

2. In theology, to renew the heart by a change of affections; to change the heart and affections from natural enmity to the love of God; to implant holy affections in the heart.

REGENERATE, a. [L. regeneratus.]

1. Reproduced.

2. Born anew; renovated in heart; changed from a natural to a spiritual state.


1. Reproduced.

2. Renewed; born again.

REGENERATENESS, n. The state of being regenerated.


1. Reproducing.

2. Renovating the nature by the implantation of holy affections in the heart.


1. Reproduction; the act of producing anew.

2. In theology, new birth by the grace of God; that change by which the will and natural enmity of man to God and his law are subdued, and a principle of supreme love to God and his law, or holy affections, are implanted in the heart.

He saved us by the washing of regeneration and renewing of the Holy Spirit. Titus 3:5.

REGENERATORY, a. Renewing; having the power to renew; tending to reproduce or renovate.

REGENT, a. [L. regens, from rego, to rule.]

1. Ruling; governing; as a regent principle.

2. Exercising vicarious authority.

Queen regent, a queen who governs; opposed to queen consort.


1. A governor; a ruler; in a general sense; as Uriel, regent of the sun.

2. One invested with vicarious authority; one who governs a kingdom in the minority, absence or disability of the king.

3. In colleges, a teacher of arts and sciences, having pupils under his care, generally of the lower classes; those who instruct the higher classes being called professors.

4. In English universities, a master of arts under five years standing, and a doctor under two.

5. In the state of New york, the member of a corporate body which is invested with the superintendence of all the colleges, academies and schools in the state. This board consists of twenty one members, who are called “the regents of the university of the state of New York.” They are appointed and removable by the legislature. They have power to grant acts of incorporation for colleges, to visit and inspect all colleges, academies and schools, and to make regulations for governing the same.

REGENTESS, n. A protectress of a kingdom.


1. The power of governing, or the office of a regent.

2. Deputed authority.

REGERMINATE, v.i. [re and germinate.]

To germinate again.

Perennial plants regerminate several years successively.

REGERMINATING, ppr. Germinating anew.

REGERMINATION, n. A sprouting or germination anew.

REGEST, n. A register. [Not in use.]

REGIBLE, a. Governable. [Not in use.]

REGICIDE, n. [L. rex, king, and caedo, to slay.]

1. A king-killer; one who murders a king.

2. The killing or murder of a king.

REGIMEN, n. [L. from rego, to govern.]

1. In medicine, the regulation of diet with a view to the preservation or restoration of health; or in a more general sense, the regulation of all the non-naturals for the same purposes.

2. Any regulation or remedy which is intended to produce beneficial effects by gradual operation.

3. In grammar, government; that part of syntax or construction, which regulates the dependency of words, and the alterations which one occasions or requires in another in connection with it; the words governed.

4. Orderly government; system of order.

REGIMENT, n. [L. regimen.]

1. In military affairs, a body of men, either horse, foot or artillery, commanded by a colonel or lieutenant colonel and major, and consisting of a number of companies, usually from eight to ten.

2. Government; mode of ruling; rule; authority; as used by Hooker, Hale and others. [Wholly obsolete.]

REGIMENT, v.t. To form into a regiment or into regiments with proper officers. [A military use of the word.]

REGIMENTAL, a. Belonging to a regiment; as regimental officers; regimental clothing.

REGIMENTALS, n. plu. The uniform worn by the troops of a regiment.

REGIMENTED, pp. Formed into a regiment; incorporated with a regiment.

REGION, n. re’jun. [L. regio, rego.]

1. A tract of land or space of indefinite extent, usually a tract of considerable extent. It is sometimes nearly synonymous with country; as all the region of Argob. Deuteronomy 3:4.

He had dominion over all the region on this side the river. 1 Kings 4:24.

So we speak of the airy region, the etherial regions, the upper regions, the lower regions.

2. The inhabitants of a region or district of country. Matthew 3:5.

3. A part of the body; as the region of the heart or liver.

4. Place; rank.

He is of too high a region. [Unusual.]

REGISTER, n. [Low L. registrum, from regero, to set down in writing; re and gero, to carry.]

1. A written account or entry of acts, judgments or proceedings, for preserving and conveying to future times an exact knowledge of transactions. The word appropriately denotes an official account of the proceedings of a public body, a prince, a legislature, a court an incorporated company and the like, and in this use it is synonymous with record. But in a lax sense, it signifies any account entered on paper to preserve the remembrance of what is done.

2. The book in which a register or record is kept, as a parish register; also, a list, as the register of seamen.

3. [Low L. registrarius.] The officer or person whose business is to write or enter in a book accounts of transactions, particularly of the acts and proceedings of courts or other public bodies; as the register of a court of probate; a register of deeds.

4. In chimistry and the arts, an aperture with a lid, stopper or sliding plate, in a furnace, stove, etc. for regulating the admission of air and the heat of the fire.

5. The inner part of the mold in which types are cast.

6. In printing, the correspondence of columns on the opposite sides of the sheet.

7. A sliding piece of wood, used as a stop in an organ.

Parish register, a book in which are recorded the baptisms of children and the marriages and burials of the parish.

Register ship, a ship which obtains permission to trade to the Spanish West Indies and is registered before sailing.


1. To record; to write in a book for preserving an exact account of facts and proceedings. The Greeks and Romans registered the names of all children born.

2. To enroll; to enter in a list.

REGISTERSHIP, n. The office of register.

REGISTRAR, n. An officer in the English universities, who has the keeping of all the public records.

REGISTRATION, n. The act of inserting in a register.


1. The act of recording or writing in a register.

2. The place where a register is kept.

3. A series of facts recorded.

REGLEMENT, n. Regulation. [Not used.]

REGLET, n. [L. regula, rego.]

A ledge of wood exactly planed, used by printers to separate lines and make the work more open.

REGNANT, a. [L. regno, to reign.]

1. Reigning; exercising regal authority; as a queen regnant. The modern phrase is queen regent.

2. Ruling; predominant; prevalent; having the chief power; as vices regnant. We now say, reigning vices.

REGORGE, v.t. regorj’.

1. To vomit up; to eject from the stomach; to throw back or out again.

2. To swallow again.

3. To swallow eagerly.

REGRADE, v.i. [L. regredior; re and gradior, to go.] To retire; to go back. [Not used.]

REGRAFT, v.t. [re and graft.] To graft again.

REGRAFTED, pp. Grafted again.