Noah Webster’s 1828 Dictionary



VIVES, n. A disease of animals, particularly of horses, seated in the glads under the ear, where a tumor is formed which sometimes ends in suppuration.

VIVIANITE, n. A phosphate of iron, of various shades of blue and green.

VIVID, a. [L. vividus, from vivo, to live.]

1. Lively; sprightly; active.

Body is a fit workhouse for sprightly vivid faculties to exert themselves in.

2. Lively; sprightly; forming brilliant images, or painting in lively colors; as a vivid imagination.

3. Bright; strong; exhibiting the appearance of life or freshness; as the vivid colors of the rainbow; the vivid green of flourishing vegetables.

Arts which present, with all the vivid charms of painting, the human face and human form divine.


1. With life; with strength.

Sensitive objects affect a man much more vividly than those which affect only his mind.

2. With brightness; in bright colors.

3. In glowing colors; with animated exhibition to the mind. The orator vividly represented the miseries of his client.


1. Life; strength; sprightliness.

2. Strength of coloring; brightness.

VIVIFIC, VIVIFICAL, a. [L. vivificus. See Vivify.] Giving life; reviving; enlivening.

VIVIFICATE, v.t. [L. vivifico, vivus, alive, and facio, to make.]

1. to give life to; to animate. [See Vivify.]

2. In chimistry, to recover from such a change of form as seems to destroy the essential qualities; or to give to natural bodies new luster, force and figor.


1. The act of giving life; revival.

2. Among chimists, the act of giving new luster, force and vigor; as the vivification of mercury.

VIVIFICATIVE, a. Able to animate or give life.

VIVIFIED, pp. revived; endued with life.

VIVIFY, v.t. [L. vivfico; vivus, alive, and facio, to make.]

To endue with life; to animate; to make to be living.

Sitting on eggs doth vivify, not nourish.

VIVIFYING, ppr. enduing with life; communicating life to.

VIVIPAROUS, a. [L. vivus, alive, and pario, to bear.]

1. Producing young in a living state, as all mammifers; as distinguished from oviparous, producing eggs, as fowls. If fowls were viviparous, it is difficult to how the female would fly during preganancy.

2. In botany, producing its offspring alive, either by bulbs instead of seeds, or by the seeds themselves germinating on the plant, instread of falling, as they usually do; as a viviparous plant.

VIXEN, n. [vixen is a she fox, or a fox’s cub.]

A froward, turbulent, quarrelsome woman.

VIXENLY, a. having the qualities of a vixen.

VIZ. a contraction of videlicet; to wit, that is, namely.

VIZARD, n. a mask. [See Visor.]

VIZARD, v.t. To mask.

VIZIER, VIZER, n. The chief minister of the Turkish empire.

VOCABLE, n. [L. vocabulum. See Voice.]

A word; a term; a name.

VOCABULARY, n. [L. vocabulum, a word.]

A list or collection of the words of a language, arranged in alphabetical order and explained; a dictionary or lexicon. We often use vocabulary in a sense somewhat different from that of dictionary, restricting the signification to the list of words; as when we say, the vocabulary of Johnson is more full or extensive than that of Entick. We rarely use the word as synonymous with dictionary, but in the other countries the corresponding word is used and this may be so used in English.

VOCAL, a. [L. vocalis. See Voice.]

1. Having a voice.

To hill or valley, fountain or fresh shade, made vocal by my song.

2. Uttered or modulated by the voice; as vocal melody; vocal prayer; vocal praise.

Vocal music, music made by the voice, in distinction from instrumental music; hence, music or tunes set to words, to be performed by the human voice.

VOCAL, n. Among the Romanists, a man who has a right to vote in certain elections.

VOCALITY, n. [L. vocalitas.] Quality of being utterable by the voice; as the vocality of the letters.

VOCALIZE, v.t. to form into voice; to make vocal.

It is one thing to give impulse to breath alone, and another to vocalize that breath.

VOCALIZED, pp. Made vocal; formed into voice.

VOCALIZING, ppr. Forming into voice or sound.


1. With voice; with an audible sound.

2. In words; as, to express desires vocally.

VOCATION, n. [L. vocatio, from voco, to call. See Voice.]

1. Among divines, a calling by the will of God; or the bestowment of God’s distinguishing grace upon a person or nation, by which that person or nation is put in the way of salvation; as the vocation of the Jews under the old dispensation, and of the Gentiles under the gospel.

2. Summons; call; inducement.

What can be urged for them who, not having the vocation of poverty to scribble, out of mere wantonness make themselves ridiculous!

3. Designation or destination to a particular state or profession.

None is to enter the ecclesiastic or monastie state, without a particular vocation.

4. Employment; calling; occupation; trade; a word that includes professions as well as mechanical occupations. Let every divine, every physician, every lawyer, and every mechanic, be faithful and diligent in his vocation.

VOCATIVE, a. [L. vocativus.] Relating to calling; as the vocative case in grammar.

VOCATIVE, n. In grammar, the fifth case or state of nouns in the Latin language; or the case in any language, in which a word is placed when the person is addressed: as Domine, O Lord.

VOCIFERATE, v.i. [L. vocifero, vex and fero.] To cry out with vehemence; to exclaim.

VOCIFERATE, v.t. To utter with a loud voice.

VOCIFERATING, ppr. Crying out with vehemence; uttering with a loud voice.

VOCIFERATION, n. A violent outcry; vehement utterance of the voice.

VOCIFEROUS, a. Making a loud outcry; clamorous; noisy; as vociferous heralds.

VOGUE, n. vig. [The sense of vogue is way, or the going of the world.]

The way or fashion of people at any particular time; temporary mode, custom or practice; popular reception for the time. We say, a particular form of dress is now in vogue; an amusing writer is now in vogue; such opinions are now in vogue. The phrase, the vogue of the world, used by good writers formerly, is nearly or quite obsolete.

Use may revive the obsoletest word, and banish those that now are most in vogue.

VOICE, n. [L. vox; voco. The sense of the verb is to throw, to drive out sound; and voice is that which is driven out.]

1. Sound or audible noise uttered by the mouth, either of human beings or of other animals. We say, the voice of a man is loud or clear; the voice of a woman is soft or musical; the voice of a dog is loud or harsh; the voice of a bird is sweet or melodious. The voice of human beings is articulate; that of beasts, inarticulate. The voices of men are different, and when uttered together, are often dissonant.

2. Any sound made by the breath; as the trumpet’s voice.

3. A vote; suffrage; opinion or choice expressed. Originally voice was the oral utterance of choice, but it now signifies any vote however given.

Some laws ordain, and some attend the choice of holy senates, and elect by voice.

I have no words; my voice is in my sword.

4. Language; words; expression.

Let us call on God in the voice of his church.

5. In Scripture, command; precept.

Ye would not be obedient to the voice of the Lord your God. Deuteronomy 8:20.

6. Sound.

After the fire, a still small voice. 1 Kings 19:12.

Canst thou thunder with a voice like him? Job 40:9.

The floods have lifted up their voice. Psalm 93:3.

7. Language; tone; mode of expression.

I desire to be present with you now, and to change my voice. Galatians 4:20.

8. In grammar, a particular mode of inflecting or conjugating verbs; as the active voice; the passive voice.

VOICE, v.t.

1. To rumor; to report.

It was voiced that the king purposed to put to death Edward Plantagenet. [Little used.]

2. To fit for producing the proper sounds; to regulate the tone of; as, to voice the pipes of an organ.

3. To vote.

VOICE, v.i. To clamor; to exclaim. Obs.


1. Fitted to produce the proper tones.

2. a. Furnished with a voice.

VOICELESS, a. vois’less. Having no voice or vote.

VOID, a. [L. viduus, divido. Gr.]

1. Empty; vacant; not occupied with any visible matter; as a void space or place. 1 Kings 22:10.

2. Empty; without inhabitants or furniture. Genesis 1:2.

3. Having no legal or binding force; null; not effectual to bind parties, or to convey or support a right; not sufficient to produce its effect. Thus a deed not duly signed and sealed, is void. A fraudulent contract is void, or may be rendered void.

My word shall not return to me void, but it shall accomplish that which I please. Isaiah 55:11.

I will make void the counsel of Judah and Jerusalem in this place. Jeremiah 19:7.

4. Free; clear; as a conscience void of offense. Acts 24:16.

5. Destitute; as void of learning; void of reason or common sense.

He that is void of wisdom, despiseth his neighbor. Proverbs 11:12.

6. Unsupplied; vacant; unoccupied; having no incumbent.

Divers offices that had been long void.

7. Unsubstantial; vain.

Lifeless idol, void and vain.

Void space, in physics, a vacuum.

1. To make void; to violate; to transgress.

They have made void thy law. Psalm 119:126.

2. To render useless or of no effect. Romans 4:14.

VOID, n. An empty space; a vacuum.

Pride, where wit falls, steps in to our defense, and fills up all the mighty void of sense.

Th’ illimitable void.

VOID, v.t.

1. To quit; to leave.

Bid them come down, or void the field.

2. To emit; to send out; to evacuate; as, to void excrementitious matter; to void worms.

3. To vacate; to annul; to nullify; to render of no validity or effect.

It had become a practice - to void the security given for money borrowed.

4. To make or leave vacant.

VOID, v.i. To be emitted or evacuated.

VOIDABLE, a. That may be annulled or made void, or that may be adjudged void, invalid or of no force.

- Such administration is not void, but voidable by sentence.


1. The act of emptying.

2. The act of ejecting from a benefice; ejection.

3. Vacancy; want of an incumbent.

4. Evasion; subterfuge.


1. Thrust out; evacuated.

2. a. In heraldry, having the inner or middle part cut out, as an ordinary.


1. A basket in which broken meat is carried from the table.

2. One who evacuates.

3. One who nullifies.

4. In heraldry, one of the ordinaries, whose figure is much like that of the flanch or flasque.

5. In agriculture, a provincial name of a kind of shallow basket of open work.


1. Ejecting; evacuating.

2. Making or declaring void, or of no force.

3. Quitting; leaving.

4. a. Receiving what is ejected; as a voiding lobby.


1. Emptiness; vacuity; destitution.

2. Nullify; inefficacy; want of binding force.

3. Want of substantiality.

VOITURE, n. [L. vectus, veho.] Carriage. [Not English.]

VOLALKALI, n. Volatile alkali; by contraction.

VOLANT, a. [L. volo, to fly.]

1. Flying; passing through the air; as volant automata.

2. Nimble; active; as volant touch.

3. In heraldry, represented as flying or having the wings spread.

VOLATILE, a. [L. volatilis, from volo, to fly.]

1. Flying; passing through the air on wings, or by the buoyant force of the atmosphere.

2. Having the power to fly; as birds are volatile animals.

3. Capable of wasting away, or of easily passing into the aeriform state. Thus substances which affect the smell with pungent or fragrant odors, as musk, hartshorn and essential oils, are called volatile substances, because they waste away on exposure to the atmosphere. Alcohol and ether are called volatile liquids for a similar reason, and because they easily pass into the state of vapor on the application of heat. On the contrary, gold is a fixed substance, because it does not suffer waste even when exposed to the heat of a furnace; and oils are called fixed, when they do not evaporate on simple exposure to the atmosphere.

4. Lively; gay; full of spirit; airy; hence, fickle; apt to change; as a volatile temper.

You are as giddy and volatile as ever.

VOLATILE, n. A winged animal. [little used.]


1. Disposition to exhale or evaporate; the quality of being capable of evaporation; that property of a substance which disposes it to rise and float in the air, and thus to be dissipated; as the volatility of fluids. Ether is remarkable for its volatility. Many or most solid bodies are susceptible of volatility by the action of intense heat.

By the spirit of a plant we understand that pure elaborated oil, which by reason of its extreme volatility, exhales spontaneously, and in which the odor or smell consists.

2. Great sprightliness; levity; liveliness; whence, mutability of mind; fickleness; as the volatility of youth.

VOLATILIZATION, n. [from volatilize.] The act or process of rendering volatile, or rather of causing to rise and float in the air.

VOLATILIZE, v.t. To render volatile; to cause to exhale or evaporate; to cause to pass off in vapor or invisible effluvia, and to rise and float in the air.

The water - dissolving the oil, and volatilizing it by the action.

VOLATILIZED, pp. Rendered volatile; caused to rise and float in air.

VOLATILIZING, ppr. Rendering volatile; causing to rise and float in air.

VOLCANIC, a. [from volcano.]

1. Pertaining to volcanoes; as volcanic heat.

2. Produced by a volcano; as volcanic tufa.

3. Changed or affected by the heat of a volcano.

VOLCANIST, n. [from volcano.]

1. One versed in the history and phenomena of volcanoes.

2. One who believes in the effects of eruptions of fire in the formation of mountains.

VOLCANITE, n. A mineral, otherwise called augite.

VOLCANITY, n. The state of being volcanic or of volcanic origin.

VOLCANIZATION, n. [from volcanize.] The process of undergoing volcanic heat and being affected by it.

VOLCANIZE, v.t. To subject to or cause to undergo volcanic heat and to be affected by its action.

VOLCANIZED, pp. Affected by volcanic heat.


1. In geology, an opening in the surface of the earth or in a mountain, from which smoke, flames, stones, lava or other substances are ejected. Such are seen in Etna and Vesuvius in Sicily and Italy, and Hecla in Iceland. It is vulgarly called a burning mountain. Herschel has discovered a volcano in the moon.

2. The mountain that ejects fire, smoke, etc.

VOLE, n. A deal at cards that draws all the tricks.


1. A flight of birds.

2. A large bird-cage, in which the birds have room to fly.

VOLITATION, n. [L. volito, dim. of volo, to fly.] The act of flying; flight.

VOLITION, n. [L. volitio, from volo, to will. See Will.]

1. The act of willing the act of determining choice, or forming a purpose. There is a great difference between actual volition, and approbation of judgment.

Volition is the actual exercise of the power which the mind has of considering or forbearing to consider an idea.

2. The power of willing or determining.

VOLITIVE, a. Having the power to will.

They not only perfect the intellectual faculty, but the volitive.

VOLLEY, n. plu. volleys. [L. volo.]

1. A flight of shot; the discharge of many small arms at once.

2. A burst or emission of many things at once; as a volley of words.

But rattling nonsense to full volleys breaks.

VOLLEY, v.t. to discharge with a volley.
VOLLEY, v.i. To throw out or discharge at once.

VOLLEYED, a. [from volley.] disploded; discharged with a sudden burst; as volleyed thunder.

VOLT, n. [L. volutus, volvo.]

1. a round or circular tread; a gait of two treads, made by a horse going sideways round a center.

2. In fencing, a sudden movement or leap to avoid a thrust.

Volta, in Italian music, signifies that the part is to be repeated one, two or more times.

VOLTAIC, a. Pertaining to Volta, the discoverer of voltaism; as the voltaic pile.

Volatic apparatus, the apparatus used for accumulating galvanic electricity. the agent itself is denominated galvanism, after its discoverer Galvani, while the instruments used for exciting and accumulating it, are called voltaic, in honor of Volta, who first contrived this kind of apparatus.

Voltaic pile, a column formed by successive pairs of metallic disks, as silver and zink, with moistened cloth between every two contiguous pairs.

Voltaic battery, the larger forms of voltaic apparatus, used for accumulating galvanic electricity.

VOLTAISM, n. That branch of electrical science which has its source in the chimical action between metals and different liquids. it is more properly called galvanism, from Galvani, who first proved or brought into notice its remarkable influence on animals.

VOLUBILATE, VOLUBILE, a. In gardening, a volubilate stem is one that climbs by winding or twining round another body.

VOLUBILITY, n. [L. volubilitas, from volvo, to roll.]

1. The capacity of being rolled; aptness to roll; as the volubility of a bowl.

2. The act of rolling.

By irregular volutibility.

3. Ready motion of the tongue in speaking; fluency of speech.

She ran over the catalogue of diversions with such a volubility of tongue, as drew a gentle reprimand from her father.

4. Mutability; liableness to revolution; as the volubility of human affairs. [Unusual.]

VOLUBLE, a. [L. volubilis.]

1. Formed so as to roll with ease, or to be easily set in motion; apt to roll; as voluble particles of matter.

2. Rolling; having quick motion.

This less voluble earth.

3. Nimble; active; moving with ease and smoothness in uttering words; fluent; as a flippant, voluble tongue.

4. Fluent; flowing with ease and smoothness; as a voluble speech.

5. Having fluency of speech.

Cassio, a knave very voluble.

VOLUBLY, adv. In a rolling or fluent manner.

VOLUME, n. [L. volumen, a roll; volvo, to roll. to make u long, in this word, is palpably wrong.]

1. Primarily a roll, as the ancients wrote on long strips of bark, parchment or other material, which they formed into rolls or folds. Of such volumes, Ptolemy’s library in Alexandria contained 3 or 700,000.

2. A roll or turn; as much as is included in a roll or coil; as the volume of a serpent.

3. Dimensions; compass; space occupied; as the volume of an elephant’s body; a volume of gas.

4. A swelling or spherical body.

The undulating billows rolling their silver volumes.

5. A book; a collection of sheets of paper, usually printed or written paper, folded and bound, or covered. A book consisting of sheets once folded, is called a folio, or a folio volume; of sheets twice folded, a quarto; and thus according to the number of leaves in a sheet, it is called an octavo, or a duodecimo. The Scriptures or sacred writings, bound in a single volume, are called the Bible. The number of volumes in the Royal Library, in rue de Richlieu, at Paris, is variously estimated. It is probable it may amount to 400,000.

An odd volume of a set of books, bears not the value of its proportion to the set.

6. In music, the compass of a voice from grave to acute; the tone or power of voice.

VOLUMED, a. Having the form of a volume or roll; as volumed mist.


1. Consisting of many coils or complications.

The serpent roll’d voluminous and vast.

2. Consisting of many volumes or books.

The collections of Muratori and of the Byzantine history, are very voluminous.

3. Having written much, or made many volumes; as a voluminons writer.

4. Copious; diffusive. He was too voluminous in discourse. [Not in use.]

VOLUMINOUSLY, adv. In many volumes; very copiously.

VOLUMINOUSNESS, n. State of being bulky or in many volumes.

VOLUMIST, n. One who writes a volume; an author. [Not in use.]

VOLUNTARILY, adv. [from voluntary.] Spontaneously; of one’s own will; without being moved, influenced or impelled by others.

To be agents voluntarily in our own destruction, is against God and nature.

VOLUNTARINESS, n. The state of being voluntary or optional.

VOLUNTARY, a. [L. voluntarius, from voluntas, will, from volo.]

1. Acting by choice or spontaneously; acting without being influenced or impelled by another.

2. Free, or having power to act by choice; not being under restraint; as, man is a voluntary agent.

3. Proceeding from choice or free will.

That sin or guilt pertains exclusively to voluntary action, is the true principle of orthodoxy.

4. Willing; acting with willingness.

She fell to lust a voluntary prey.

5. Done by design; purposed; intended. If a man kills another by lopping a tree, here is no voluntary murder.

6. Done freely, or of choice; proceeding from free will. He went into voluntary exile. He made a voluntary surrender.

7. Acting of his own accord; spontaneous; as the voluntary dictates of knowledge.

8. Subject to the will; as the voluntary motions of an animal. Thus the motion of a leg or an arm is voluntary, but the motion of the heart is involuntary.

A voluntary escape, in law, is the escape of a prisoner by the express consent of the sheriff.

Voluntary jurisdiction, is that which is exercised in doing that which no one opposes; as in granting dispensations, etc.

Voluntary affidavit or oath, is one made in an extra-judicial matter.

Voluntary waste, is that which is committed by positive acts.


1. One who engages in any affair of his own free will; a volunteer. [In this sense, volunteer is now generally used.]

2. In music, a piece played by a musician extemporarily, according to his fancy. In the Philosophical Transactions, we have a method of writing voluntaries, as fast as the musician plays the notes. This is by a cylinder turning under the keys of the organ.

3. A composition for the organ.

VOLUNTEER, n. A person who enters into military or other service of his own free will. In military affairs, volunteers enter into service voluntarily, but when in service they are subject to discipline and regulations like other soldiers. They sometimes serve gratuitously, but often receive a compensation.

VOLUNTEER, a. Entering into service of free will; as volunteer companies.
VOLUNTEER, v.t. To offer or bestow voluntarily, or without solicitation or compulsion; as, to volunteer one’s services.
VOLUNTEER, v.i. To enter into any service of one’s free will, without solicitation or compulsion. He volunteered in that undertaking.

[These verbs are in respectable use.]

VOLUPTUARY, n. [L. volupturius, from voluptas, pleasure.]

A man addicted to luxury or the gratification of the appetite, and to other sensual pleasures.

VOLUPTUOUS, a. [L. voluptuoosus.]

Given to the enjoyments of luxury and pleasure; indulging to excess in sensual gratifications.

Soften’d with pleasure and voluptuous life.

VOLUPTUOUSLY, adv. Luxuriously; with free indulgence of sensual pleasures; as, to live voluptuously.

VOLUPTUOUSNESS, n. Luxuriousness; addictedness to pleasure or sensual gratification.

Where no voluptuousness, yet all delight.

VOLUTATION, n. [L. volutatio, from voluto, from volvo, Eng. to wallow.]

A wallowing; a rolling of the body on the earth. [See Wallow.]

VOLUTE, n. [L. volutus, volvo.]

1. In architecture, a kind of spiral scroll, used in the Ionic and composite capitals, of which it is a principal ornament. The number of volutes in the Ionic order, is four; in the Composite, eight. There are also eight angular volutes in the Corinthian capital, accompanied with eight smaller ones, called helices.

2. In natural history, a genus of shells.

VOLUTION, n. A spiral turn.

VOLUTITE, n. A petrified shell of the genus Voluta.

VOLVIC, a. Denoting a species of stone or lava.

VOMIC, a. The vomic nut, nux vomica, is the seed of the Strychnos nux vomica, a native of the East Indies. It is a very active poison.

VOMICA, n. [L.] An encysted tumor on the lungs.

VOMIT, v.i. [L. vomo. probably the Gr. is the same word, with the loss of its first letter.]

To eject the contents of the stomach by the mouth. Some persons vomit with ease, as do cats and dogs. But horses do not vomit.

VOMIT, v.t.

1. To throw up or eject from the stomach; to discharge from the stomach through the mouth. It is followed often by up or out, but without necessity and to the injury of the language. In the yellow fever, the patients often vomit dark colored matter, like coffee grounds.

The fish vomited out Jonah upon the dry land. Jonah 2:10.

2. To eject with violence from any hollow place. Volcanoes vomit flames, ashes, stones and liquid lava.


1. The matter ejected from the stomach.

2. That which excites the stomach to discharge its contents; an emetic.

Black vomit, the dark colored matter ejected from the stomach in the last stage of the yellow fever or other malignant disease; hence, the yellow fever, vulgarly so called.

VOMITED, pp. Ejected from the stomach through the mouth, or from any deep place through an opening.

VOMITING, ppr. Discharging from the stomach through the mouth, or ejecting from any deep place.


1. The act of ejecting the contents of the stomach through the mouth. Vomiting is an inverted action of the stomach.

2. The act of throwing out substances with violence from a deep hollow, as a volcano, etc.

VOMITION, n. The act or power of vomiting.

VOMITIVE, a. Causing the ejection of matter from the stomach; emetic.

VOMITORY, a. [L. vomitorius.] Procuring vomits; causing to eject from the stomach; emetic.


1. An emetic.

2. A door.