Noah Webster’s 1828 Dictionary



RELESSOR, n. The person who executes a release.

There must be a privity of estate between the relessor and release.

RELEVANCE, RELEVANCY, n. [See Relevant.]

1. The state of being relevant, or of affording relief or aid.

2. Pertinence; applicableness.

3. In Scots law, sufficiency to infer the conclusion.

RELEVANT, a. [L. relever, to relieve, to advance, to raise; re and lever, to raise.]

1. Relieving; lending aid or support.

2. Pertinent; applicable. The testimony is not relevant to the case. The argument is not relevant to the question. [This is the sense in which the word is now generally used.]

3. Sufficient to support the cause.

RELEVATION, n. A raising or lifting up. [Not in use.]

RELIANCE, n. [from rely.] Rest or repose of mind, resulting from a full belief of the veracity or integrity of a person, or of the certainty of a fact; trust; confidence; dependence. We may have perfect reliance on the promises of God; we have reliance on the testimony of witnesses; we place reliance on men of known integrity, or on the strength and stability of government.

RELIC, n. [L. reliquiae, from relinquo, to leave; re and linquo.]

1. That which remains; that which is left after the loss or decay of the rest; as the relics of a town; the relics of magnificence; the relics of antiquity. The relics of saints, real or pretended, are held in great veneration by the catholics.

2. The body of a deceased person; a corpse. [Usually in the plural.]

RELICT, n. [L. relictus, relicta, from relinquo, to leave.]

A widow; a woman whose husband is dead.


1. The removal, in whole or in part, of any evil that afflicts the body of mind; the removal or alleviation of pain, grief, want, care, anxiety, toil or distress, or of any thing oppressive or burdensome, by which some ease is obtained. Rest gives relief to the body when weary; an anodyne gives relief from pain; the sympathy of friends affords some relief to the distressed; a loan of money to a man embarrassed may afford him a temporary relief; medicines which will not cure a disease, sometimes give a partial relief. A complete relief from the troubles of life is never to be expected.

2. That which mitigates or removes pain, grief or other evil.

3. The dismission of a sentinel from his post, whose place is supplied by another soldier; also, the person who takes his place.

4. In sculpture, etc. the projecture or prominence of a figure above or beyond the ground or plane on which it is formed. Relief is of three kinds; high relief [alto relievo;] low relief [basso relievo;] and demi relief [demi relievo.] The difference is in the degree of projecture. High relief is formed from nature, as when a figure projects as much as the life. Low relief is when the figure projects but little, as in medals, festoons, foliages and other ornaments. Demi relief is when one half of the figure rises from the plane.

5. In painting, the appearance of projection, or the degree of boldness which a figure exhibits to the eye at a distance.

6. In feudal law, a fine or composition which the heir of a tenant, holding by knight’s service or other tenure, paid to the lord at the death of the ancestor, for the privilege of taking up the estate which, on strict feudal principles, had lapsed or fallen to the lord on the death of the tenant. This relief consisted of horses, arms, money and the like, the amount of which was originally arbitrary, but afterwards fixed at a certain rate by law. It is not payable, unless the heir at the death of his ancestor had attained to the age of twenty one years.

7. A remedy, partial or total, for any wrong suffered; redress; indemnification. He applied to chancery, but could get no relief. He petitioned the legislature and obtained relief.

8. The exposure of any thing by the proximity of something else.

RELIER, n. [from rely.] One who relies, or places full confidence in.

RELIEVABLE, a. Capable of being relieved; that may receive relief.

RELIEVE, v.t. [L. relevo. See Relief.]

1. To free, wholly or partially, from pain, grief, want, anxiety, care, toil, trouble, burden, oppression or any thing that is considered to be an evil; to ease of any thing that pains the body or distresses the mind. Repose relieves the wearied body; a supply of provisions relieves a family in want; medicines may relieve the sick man, even when they do not cure him. We all desire to be relieved from anxiety and from heavy taxes. Law or duty, or both, require that we should relieve the poor and destitute.

2. To alleviate or remove; as when we say, to relieve pain or distress; to relieve the wants of the poor.

3. To dismiss from a post or station, as sentinels, a guard or ships, and station others in their place. Sentinels are generally relieved every two hours; a guard is usually relieved once in twenty four hours.

4. To right; to ease of any burden, wrong or oppression by judicial or legislative interposition, by the removal of a grievance, by indemnification for losses and the like.

5. To abate the inconvenience of any thing by change, or by the interposition of something dissimilar. The moon relieves the luster of the sun with a milder light.

The poet must not encumber his poem with, too much business, but sometimes relieve the subject with a moral reflection.

6. To assist; to support.

Parallels or like relations alternately relieve each other; when neither will pass asunder, yet are they plausible together.


1. Freed from pain or other evil; eased or cured; aided; succored; dismissed from watching.

2. Alleviated or removed; as pain or distress.

RELIEVER, n. One that relieves; he or that which gives ease.

RELIEVING, ppr. Removing pain or distress, or abating the violence of it; easing; curing; assisting; dismissing from a post, as a sentinel; supporting.

RELIEVO, n. Relief; prominence of figures in statuary, architecture, etc.; apparent prominence of figures in painting.

RELIGHT, v.t. reli’te. [re and light.]

1. To light anew; to illuminate again.

2. To rekindle; to set on fire again.

RELIGHTED, pp. Lighted anew; rekindled.

RELIGHTING, ppr. Lighting again; rekindling.

RELIGION, n. relij’on. [L. religio, from religo, to bind anew; re and ligo, to bind. This word seems originally to have signified an oath or vow to the gods, or the obligation of such an oath or vow, which was held very sacred by the Romans.]

1. Religion, in its most comprehensive sense, includes a belief in the being and perfections of God, in the revelation of his will to man, in man’s obligation to obey his commands, in a state of reward and punishment, and in man’s accountableness to God; and also true godliness or piety of life, with the practice of all moral duties. It therefore comprehends theology, as a system of doctrines or principles, as well as practical piety; for the practice of moral duties without a belief in a divine lawgiver, and without reference to his will or commands, is not religion.

2. Religion, as distinct from theology, is godliness or real piety in practice, consisting in the performance of all known duties to God and our fellow men, in obedience to divine command, or from love to God and his law. James 1:27.

3. Religion, as distinct from virtue, or morality, consists in the performance of the duties we owe directly to God, from a principle of obedience to his will. Hence we often speak of religion and virtue, as different branches of one system, or the duties of the first and second tables of the law.

Let us with caution indulge the supposition, that morality can be maintained without religion.

4. Any system of faith and worship. In this sense, religion comprehends the belief and worship of pagans and Mohammedans, as well as of christians; any religion consisting in the belief of a superior power or powers governing the world, and in the worship of such power or powers. Thus we speak of the religion of the Turks, of the Hindoos, of the Indians, etc. as well as of the christian religion. We speak of false religion, as well as of true religion.

5. The rites of religion; in the plural.

RELIGIONARY, a. Relating to religion; pious. [Not used.]

RELIGIONIST, n. A bigot to any religious persuasion.

RELIGIOUS, a. [L. religiosus.]

1. Pertaining or relating to religion; as a religious society; a religious sect; a religious place; religious subjects.

2. Pious; godly; loving and reverencing the Supreme Being and obeying his precepts; as a religious man.

3. Devoted to the practice of religion; as a religious life.

4. Teaching religion; containing religious subject or the doctrines and precepts of religion, or the discussion of topics of religion; as a religious book.

5. Exact; strict; such as religion requires; as a religious observance of vows or promises.

6. Engaged by vows to a monastic life; as a religious order or fraternity.

7. Appropriated to the performance of sacred or religious duties; as a religious house.

RELIGIOUS, n. A person bound by monastic vows, or sequestered from secular concerns and devoted to a life of piety and devotion; a monk or friar; a nun.


1. Piously; with love and reverence to the Supreme Being; in obedience to the divine commands.

2. According to the rites of religion.

3. Reverently; with veneration.

4. Exactly; strictly; conscientiously; as a vow or promise religiously observed.

RELIGIOUSNESS, n. The quality or state of being religious.

RELINQUISH, v.t. [L. relinquo, re and linquo, to leave, to fail or faint; from the same root as liqueo, liquo, to melt or dissolve, deliquium, a fainting. Hence the sense is to withdraw or give way; to relinquish is to recede from.]

1. To withdraw from; to leave; to quit. It may be to forsake or abandon, but it does not necessarily express the sense of the latter. A man may relinquish an enterprise for a time, or with a design never to resume it. In general, to relinquish is to leave without the intention of resuming, and equivalent to forsake, but is less emphatical than abandon and desert.

They placed Irish tenants on the lands relinquished by the English.

2. To forbear; to withdraw from; as, to relinquish the practice of intemperance; to relinquish the rites of a church.

3. To give up; to renounce a claim to; as, to relinquish a debt.

To relinquish back, or to, to give up; to release; to surrender; as, to relinquish a claim to another.

RELINQUISHED, pp. Left; quitted; given up.

RELINQUISHER, n. One who leaves or quits.

RELINQUISHING, ppr. Quitting; leaving; giving up.

RELINQUISHMENT, n. The act of leaving or quitting; a forsaking; the renouncing a claim to.

RELIQUARY, n. [L. relinquo.]

A depository for relics; a casket in which relics are kept.

RELIQUIDATE, v.t. [re and liquidate.]

To liquidate anew; to adjust a second time.

RELIQUIDATED, pp. Liquidated again.

RELIQUIDATING, ppr. Liquidating again.

RELIQUIDATION, n. A second or renewed liquidation; a renewed adjustment.


1. Taste; or rather, a pleasing taste; that sensation of the organs which is experienced when we take food or drink of an agreeable flavor. Different persons have different relishes. Relish is often natural, and often the effect of habit.

2. Liking; delight; appetite.

We have such a relish for faction, as to have lost that of wit.

3. Sense; the faculty of perceiving excellence; taste; as a relish for fine writing, or a relish of fine writing. Addison uses both of and for after relish.

4. That which gives pleasure; the power of pleasing.

When liberty is gone, life grows insipid and has lost its relish.

5. Cast; manner.

It preserves some relish of old writing.

6. Taste; a small quantity just perceptible.

Devotion, patience, courage, fortitude, I have no relish of them.

RELISH, v.t.

1. To give an agreeable taste to.

A sav’ry bit that serv’d to relish wine.

2. To like the taste of; as, to relish venison.

3. To be gratified with the enjoyment or use of.

He knows how to prize his advantages and to relish the honors which he enjoys.

Men of nice palates would not relish Aristotle, as dressed up by the schoolmen.

RELISH, v.i.

1. To have a pleasing taste. The greatest dainties do not always relish.

2. To give pleasure.

Had I been the finder-out of this secret, it would not have relished among my other discredits.

3. To have a flavor.

A theory which, how much soever it may relish of wit and invention, hath no foundation in nature.

RELISHABLE, a. Gustable; having an agreeable taste.

RELISHED, pp. Giving an agreeable taste; received with pleasure.

RELIVE, v.i. reliv’. [re and live.] To live again; to revive.

RELIVE, v.t. reliv’. To recall to life. [Not in use.]

RELOAN, v.t. [re and loan.] To loan again; to lend what has been lent and repaid.

RELOAN, n. A second lending of the same money.

RELOANED, pp. Loaned again.

RELOANING, ppr. Loaning again.

RELOVE, v.t. [re and love.] To love in return. [Not in use.]

RELUCENT, a. [L. relucens, relucco; re and lucco, to shine.]

Shining; transparent; clear; pellucid; as a relucent stream.

RELUCT, v.i. [L. reluctor; re and luctor, to struggle.] To strive or struggle against. [Little used.]

RELUCTANCE, RELUCTANCY, n. [literally a straining or striving against.]

Unwillingness; great opposition of mind; repugnance; with to or against; as, to undertake a war with reluctance. He has a great reluctance to this measure.

Bear witness, heav’n with what reluctancy her helpless innocence I doom to die.


1. Striving against; unwilling; much opposed in heart.

Reluctant now I touch’d the trembling string.

2. Unwilling; acting with slight repugnance; coy.

3. Proceeding from an unwilling mind; granted with reluctance; as reluctant obedience.

RELUCTANTLY, adv. With opposition of heart; unwillingly. What is undertaken reluctantly is seldom well performed.

RELUCTATE, v.t. To resist; to struggle against.

RELUCTATION, n. Repugnance; resistance.


1. Striving to resist.

2. a. Averse; unwilling.

RELUME, v.t. [L. re and lumen, light.] To rekindle; to light again.

RELUMED, pp. Rekindled; lighted again.

RELUMINE, v.t. [re and lumino; re and lumen, light, from lucco, to shine.]

1. To light anew; to rekindle.

2. To illuminate again.

RELUMINED, pp. Rekindled; illuminated anew.

RELUMING, ppr. Kindling or lighting anew.

RELUMINING, ppr. Rekindling; enlightening anew.

RELY, v.i. [re and lie, or from the root of lie, lay.]

To rest on something, as the mind when satisfied of the veracity, integrity or ability of persons, or of the certainty of facts or of evidence; to have confidence in; to trust in; to depend; with on. We rely on the promise of a man who is known to be upright; we rely on the veracity or fidelity of a tried friend; a prince relies on the affections of his subjects for support, and on the strength of his army for success in war; above all things, we rely on the mercy and promises of God. That which is the ground of confidence, is a certainty or full conviction that satisfies the mind and leaves it at rest, or undisturbed by doubt.

Because thou has relied on the king of Syria, and not relied on the Lord thy God - 2 Chronicles 16:8.

RELYING, ppr. Reposing on something, as the mind; confiding in; trusting in; depending.

REMADE, pret. and pp. of remake.

REMAIN, v.i. [L. remaneo; re and maneo, Gr.]

1. To continue; to rest or abide in a place for a time indefinite. They remained a month in Rome. We remain at an inn for a night, for a week, or a longer time.

Remain a widow at thy father’s house, till Shelah my son be grown. Genesis 38:11.

2. To be left after others have withdrawn; to rest or abide in the same place when others remove, or are lost, destroyed or taken away.

Noah only remained alive, and they that were with him in the ark. Genesis 7:23.

3. To be left after a part or others have past. Let our remaining time or years be employed in active duties.

4. To continue unchanged, or in a particular state. He remains stupid; he remains in a low state of health.

5. Not to be lost; not to escape; not to be forgotten.

All my wisdom remained with me.

6. To be left, out of a greater number or quantity. Part of the debt is paid; that which remains will be on interest.

That which remaineth over, lay up for you to be kept till the morning. Exodus 16:23.

7. To be left as not included or comprised. There remains one argument which has not been considered.

That an elder brother has power over his brethren, remains to be proved.

8. To continue in the same state.

Children thou art, childless remain.

REMAIN, v.t. To await; to be left to; as, the easier conquest now remains thee. [This is elliptical for remains to thee. Remain is not properly a transitive verb.]
REMAIN, n. That which is left; a corpse; also, abode. [Not used.]


1. Any thing left after the separation and removal of a part.

If these decoctions be repeated till the water comes off clear, the remainder yields no salt.

The last remainders of unhappy Troy.

2. Relics; remains; the corpse of a human being. [Not now used.]

3. That which is left after a part is past; as the remainder of the day or week; the remainder of the year; the remainder of life.

4. The sum that is left after subtraction or after any deduction.

5. In law, an estate limited to take effect and be enjoyed after another estate is determined. A grants land to B for twenty years; remainder to D in fee. If a man by deed or will limits his books or furniture to A for life, with remainder to B, this remainder is good.

A writ of formedon in remainder, is a writ which lies where a man gives lands to another for life or in tail, with remainder to a third person in tail or in fee, and he who has the particular estate dies without issue heritable, and a stranger intrudes upon him in remainder and keeps him out of possession; in this case, the remainder-man shall have his writ of formedon in the remainder.

REMAINDER, a. Remaining; refuse; left; as the remainder biscuit; the remainder viands. Obs.

REMAINDER-MAN, n. In law, he who has an estate after a particular estate is determined.

REMAINING, ppr. Continuing; resting; abiding for an indefinite time; being left after separation and removal of a part, or after loss or destruction, or after a part is passed, as of time.

REMAINS, n. plu.

1. That which is left after a part is separated, taken away or destroyed; as the remains of a city or house demolished.

2. A dead body; a corpse.

The singular, remain, in the like sense, and in the sense of abode, is entirely obsolete.

REMAKE, v.t. pret. and pp. remade. [re and make.] To make anew.

REMAND, v.t. [L. re and mando.]

To call or send back him or that which is ordered to a place; as, to remand an officer from a distant place; to remand an envoy from a foreign court.

REMANDED, pp. Called or sent back.

REMANDING, ppr. Calling or sending back.

REMANENT, n. [L. remanens.] The part remaining. [Little used. It is contracted into remnant.]

REMANENT, a. Remaining. [little used.]

REMARK, n. Notice or observation, particularly notice or observation expressed in words or writing; as the remarks of an advocate; the remarks made in conversation; the judicious or the uncandid remarks of a critic. A remark is not always expressed, for we say, a man makes his remarks on a preacher’s sermon while he is listening to it. In this case the notice is silent, a mere act of the mind.

REMARK, v.t.

1. To observe; to note in the mind; to take notice of without expression. I remarked the manner of the speaker; I remarked his elegant expressions.

2. To express in words or writing what one thinks or sees; to express observations; as, it is necessary to repeat what has been before remarked.

3. To mark; to point out; to distinguish. [Not in use.]

His manacles remark him.


1. Observable; worthy of notice.

‘Tis remarkable that they talk most, who have the least to say.

2. Extraordinary; unusual; that deserves particular notice, or that may excite admiration or wonder; as the remarkable preservation of lives in shipwreck. The dark day in May, 1780, was a remarkable phenomenon.

REMARKABLENESS, n. Observableness; worthiness of remark; the quality of deserving particular notice.


1. In a manner or degree worthy of notice; as, the winters of 1825, 1826 and 1828 were remarkably free from snow. The winter of 1827 was remarkable for a great quantity of snow.

2. In an extraordinary manner.

REMARKED, pp. Noticed; observed; expressed in words or writing.

REMARKER, n. An observer; one who makes remarks.

REMARKING, ppr. Observing; taking notice of; expressing in words or writing.

REMARRIED, pp. Married again or a second time.

REMARRY, v.t. [re and marry.] To marry again or a second time.

REMARRYING, ppr. Marrying again or a second time.

REMASTICATE, v.t. [re and masticate.] To chew or masticate again; to chew over and over, as in chewing the cud.

REMASTICATED, pp. Chewed again or repeatedly.

REMASTICATING, ppr. Chewing again or over and over.

REMASTICATION, n. The act of masticating again or repeatedly.

REMEDIABLE, a. [from remedy.] That may be remedied or cured. The evil is believed to be remediable.

REMEDIAL, a. [L. remedialis.] Affording a remedy; intended for a remedy, or for the removal of an evil.

The remedial part of law is so necessary a consequence of the declaratory and directory, that laws without it must be very vague and imperfect. Statutes are declaratory of remedial.

REMEDIATE, in the sense of remedial, is not in use.

REMEDIED, pp. [from remedy.] Cured; healed; repaired.

REMEDILESS, a. [In modern books, the accent is placed on the first syllable, which would be well if there were no derivatives; but remedilessly, remedilessness, require the accent on the second syllable.]

1. Not admitting a remedy; incurable; desperate; as a remediless disease.

2. Irreparable; as, a loss or damage is remediless.

3. Not admitting change or reversal; as a remediless doom.

4. Not admitting recovery; as a remediless delusion.

REMEDILESSLY, adv. In a manner or degree that precludes a remedy.

REMEDILESSNESS, n. Incurableness.

REMEDY, n. [L. remedium; re and medeor, to heal.]

1. That which cures a disease; any medicine or application which puts an end to disease and restores health; with for; as a remedy for the gout.

2. That which counteracts an evil of any kind; with for, to or against; usually with for. Civil government is the remedy for the evils of natural liberty. What remedy can be provided for extravagance in dress? The man who shall invent an effectual remedy for intemperance, will deserve every thing from his fellow men.

3. That which cures uneasiness.

Our griefs how swift, our remedies how slow.

4. That which repairs loss or disaster; reparation.

In the death of a man there is no remedy.

REMEDY, v.t.

1. To cure; to heal; as, to remedy a disease.

2. To cure; to remove, as an evil; as, to remedy grief; to remedy the evils of a war.

3. To repair; to remove mischief; in a very general sense.

REMEDYING, ppr. Curing; healing; removing; restoring from a bad to a good state.

REMELT, v.t. [re and melt.] To melt a second time.

REMELTED, pp. Melted again.

REMELTING, ppr. Melting again.

REMEMBER, v.t. [Low L. rememoror; re and memoror. See Memory.]

1. To have in the mind an idea which had been in the mind before, and which recurs to the mind without effort.

We are said to remember any thing, when the idea of it arises in the mind with the consciousness that we have had this idea before.

2. When we use effort to recall an idea, we are said to recollect it. This distinction is not always observed. Hence remember is often used as synonymous with recollect, that is, to call to mind. We say, we cannot remember a fact, when we mean, we cannot recollect it.

Remember the days of old. Deuteronomy 32:7.

3. To bear or keep in mind; to attend to.

Remember what I warn thee; shun to taste.

4. To preserve the memory of; to preserve from being forgotten.

Let them have their wages duly paid, and something over to remember me.

5. To mention. [Not in use.]

6. To put in mind; to remind; as, to remember one of his duty. [Not in use.]

7. To think of and consider; to meditate. Psalm 63:6.

8. To bear in mind with esteem; or to reward. Ecclesiastes 9:15.

9. To bear in mind with praise or admiration; to celebrate. 1 Chronicles 16:12.

10. To bear in mind with favor, care, and regard for the safety or deliverance of any one. Psalm 74:2; Genesis 8:1; Genesis 19:29.

11. To bear in mind with intent to reward or punish. 3 John 10; Jeremiah 31:20, 34.

12. To bear in mind with confidence; to trust in. Psalm 20:7.

13. To bear in mind with the purpose of assisting or relieving. Galatians 2:10.

14. To bear in mind with reverence; to obey.

Remember thy Creator in the days of thy youth. Ecclesiastes 12:1.

15. To bear in mind with regard; to keep as sacred; to observe.

Remember the sabbath day, to keep it holy. Exodus 20:8.

To remember mercy, is to exercise it. Habakkuk 3:2.

REMEMBERED, pp. Kept in mind; recollected.

REMEMBERER, n. One that remembers.

REMEMBERING, ppr. Having in mind.


1. The retaining or having in mind an idea which had been present before, or an idea which had been previously received from an object when present, and which recurs to the mind afterwards without the presence of its object. Technically, remembrance differs from reminiscence and recollection, as the former implies that an idea occurs to the mind spontaneously, or without much mental exertion. The latter imply the power or the act of recalling ideas which do not spontaneously recur to the mind.

The righteous shall be in everlasting remembrance. Psalm 112:6.

Remembrance is when the same idea recurs, without the operation of the like object on the external sensory.

2. Transmission of a fact from one to another.

Titan among the heav’ns th’ immortal fact display’d, lest the remembrance of his grief should fall.

3. Account preserved; something to assist the memory.

Those proceedings and remembrances are in the Tower.

4. Memorial.

But in remembrance of so brave a deed, a tomb and funeral honors I decreed.

5. A token by which one is kept in the memory.

Keep this remembrance for thy Julia’s sake.

6. Notice of something absent.

Let your remembrance still apply to Banquo.

7. Power of remembering; limit of time within which a fact can be remembered; as when we say, an event took place before our remembrance, or since our remembrance.

8. Honorable memory. [Not in use.]

9. Admonition.

10. Memorandum; a note to help the memory.


1. One that reminds, or revives the remembrance of any thing.

God is present in the consciences of good and bad; he is there a remembrancer to call our actions to mind.

2. An officer in the exchequer of England, whose business is to record certain papers and proceedings, make out processes, etc.; a recorder. The officers bearing this name were formerly called clerks of the remembrance.