Archive for the 'A' Category

AYE. adv.


AYE. adv. [aya, Saxon.] Always; to eternity; for ever.
And now in darksome dungeon, wretched thrall,
Remedyless for aye he doth him hold. Fairy Queen, b. i.
Either prepare to die,
Or on Diana’s altar to protest,
For aye, austerity and single life.
Shakespeare’s Midsummer Night’s Dream.
The soul, though made in time, survives for aye;
And, though it hath beginning, sees no end.
Sir John Davies.
And hears the muses, in a ring,
Aye round about Jove’s altar sing. Milton’s Il Penseroso.
Th’astonish’d mariners aye ply the pump;
No stay, nor rest, till the wide breach is clos’d. Philips.



To A’USTRALIZE. v.n. [from auster, the south wind, Lat.] To
tend towards the south.
Steel and good iron discover a verticity, or polary faculty;
whereby they do septentriate at one extreme, and australize at
another. Brown’s Vulgar Errours, b. ii. c. 2.

To ASSA’Y. v.a.


To ASSA’Y. v.a. [essayer, Fr.]
1. To make trial of; to make experiment of.
Gray and Bryan obtained leave of the general a little to as
say them; and so with some horsemen charged them home.
Sir J. Hayward.
What unweighed behaviour hath this drunkard picked out of
my conversation, that he dares in this manner assay me?
Shakesp. Merry Wives of Windsor.
2. To apply to, as the touchstone in assaying metals.
Whom thus afflicted, when sad Eve beheld,
Desolate where she sat, approaching nigh,
Soft words to his fierce passion she assay’d. Par. Lost, b. X.
3. To try; to endeavour.
David girded his sword upon his armour, and he assayed to
go, for he had not proved it. I Sam. xvii. 39.
[He rigg’d ye gallies up & furnish’d ym for all assayes. Knolles.]

ARO’YNT. adv.


ARO’YNT. adv. [a word of uncertain etymology, but very ancient
use.] Be gone; away: a word of expulsion, or avoiding.
Saint Withold footed thrice the wold,
He met the night-mare, and her name told,
Bid her alight, and her troth plight,
And aroynt thee, witch, aroynt thee right. Shak. King Lear.
[it seems derived from ye Fr. rogneux, or qui a la rogne a paltry, mangy fellow]

A’PISH. adj.


A’PISH. adj. [from ape.]
1. Having the qualities of an ape; imitative.
Report of fashions in proud Italy,
Whose manners still our tardy, apish nation
Limps after, in base aukward imitation. Shak. Richard II.
2. Foppish; affected.
Because I cannot flatter, and look fair,
Duck with French nods and apish courtesy,
I must be held a rancorous enemy. Shakesp. Richard III.
3. Silly; trifling; insignificant.
All this is but apish sophistry; and, to give it a name divine
and excellent, is abusive and unjust. Glanville’s Scepsis Scient.
4. Wanton; playful.
Gloomy sits the queen;
Till happy chance reverts the cruel scene;
And apish folly, with her wild resort
Of wit and jest, disturbs the solemn court. Prior.



ALL-CHEERING. adj. [from all and cheer.] That which gives
gayety and cheerfulness to all.
Soon as the all-cheering sun
Should, in the farthest east, begin to draw
The shady curtains from Aurora’s bed. Sh. Romeo and Jul.



A’FTERWIT. n.s. [from after and wit.] The contrivance of
expedients after the occasion of using them is past. See AF-
There is no recalling what’s gone and past; so that after
wit comes too late, when the mischief is done. L’Estrange.



A’FTERGAME. n.s. [from after and game.] The scheme which
may be laid, or the expedients which are practised after the
original design has miscarried; methods taken after the first
turn of affairs.
This earl, like certain vegetables, did bud and open slowly;
nature sometimes delighting to play an aftergame, as well as
fortune, which had both their turns and tides in course. Wotton.
The fables of the ax-handle and the wedge, serve to precau-
tion us not to put ourselves needlessly upon an aftergame, but
to weight beforehand what we say and do. L’Estrange’s Fab.
Our first design, my friend, has prov’d abortive;
Still there remains an aftergame to play. Addison’s Cato.



Æ’GLOGUE. n.s. [written instead of eclogue, from a mistaken
etymology.] A pastoral; a dialogue in verse between goat-
Which moved him rather in æglogues otherwise to write,
doubting, perhaps, his ability, which he little needed, or mind-
ing to furnish our tongue with this kind wherein it faulteth.
Spenser’s Pastorals.

A’DAGE. n.s.


A’DAGE. n.s. [adagium, Lat.] A maxim handed down from antiquity; a proverb.
Shallow, unimproved intellects, that are confident pretenders
to certainty; as if, contrary to the adage, science had no friend
but ignorance. Glanville’s Scepsis Scientifica, c.2.
Fine fruits of learning! old ambitious fool,
Dar’st apply that adage of the school;
As if ’tis nothing worth that lies conceal’d;
And science is not science ’til reveal’d? Dryd. Pers. Sat. i.