Webster's Dictionary, 1913

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Aborsive (ȧ*bôr"sĭv) adjective Abortive. [ Obsolete] Fuller.

Abort (ȧ*bôrt") intransitive verb [ Latin abortare , from abortus , past participle of aboriri ; ab + oriri to rise, to be born. See Orient .]


1. To miscarry; to bring forth young prematurely.

2. (Biol.) To become checked in normal development, so as either to remain rudimentary or shrink away wholly; to become sterile.

Abort noun [ Latin abortus , from aboriri .]
1. An untimely birth. [ Obsolete] Sir H. Wotton.

2. An aborted offspring. [ Obsolete] Holland.

Aborted adjective
1. Brought forth prematurely.

2. (Biol.) Rendered abortive or sterile; undeveloped; checked in normal development at a very early stage; as, spines are aborted branches.

The eyes of the cirripeds are more or less aborted in their mature state.
Owen.

Aborticide (ȧ*bôr"tĭ*sīd) noun [ Latin abortus + caedere to kill. See Abort .] (Medicine) The act of destroying a fetus in the womb; feticide.

Abortifacient (ȧ*bôr`tĭ*fā"sh e nt) adjective [ Latin abortus (see Abort , v. ) + faciens , present participle of facere to make.] Producing miscarriage. -- noun A drug or an agent that causes premature delivery.

Abortion (ȧ*bôr"shŭn) noun [ Latin abortio , from aboriri . See Abort .]
1. The act of giving premature birth; particularly, the expulsion of the human fetus prematurely, or before it is capable of sustaining life; miscarriage.

» It is sometimes used for the offense of procuring a premature delivery, but strictly the early delivery is the abortion , "causing or procuring abortion " is the full name of the offense. Abbott.

2. The immature product of an untimely birth.

3. (Biol.) Arrest of development of any organ, so that it remains an imperfect formation or is absorbed.

4. Any fruit or produce that does not come to maturity, or anything which in its progress, before it is matured or perfect; a complete failure; as, his attempt proved an abortion .

Abortional adjective Pertaining to abortion; miscarrying; abortive. Carlyle.

Abortionist noun One who procures abortion or miscarriage.

Abortive adjective [ Latin abortivus , from aboriri . See Abort , v. ]
1. Produced by abortion; born prematurely; as, an abortive child. [ R.]

2. Made from the skin of a still-born animal; as, abortive vellum. [ Obsolete]

3. Rendering fruitless or ineffectual. [ Obsolete] "Plunged in that abortive gulf." Milton.

4. Coming to naught; failing in its effect; miscarrying; fruitless; unsuccessful; as, an abortive attempt. "An abortive enterprise." Prescott.

5. (Biol.) Imperfectly formed or developed; rudimentary; sterile; as, an abortive organ, stamen, ovule, etc.

6. (Medicine) (a) Causing abortion; as, abortive medicines. Parr. (b) Cutting short; as, abortive treatment of typhoid fever.

Abortive noun
1. That which is born or brought forth prematurely; an abortion. [ Obsolete] Shak.

2. A fruitless effort or issue. [ Obsolete]

3. A medicine to which is attributed the property of causing abortion. Dunglison.

Abortively adverb In an abortive or untimely manner; immaturely; fruitlessly.

Abortiveness noun The quality of being abortive.

Abortment (ȧ*bôrt"m e nt) noun Abortion. [ Obsolete]

Abought imperfect & past participle of Aby . [ Obsolete]

Abound intransitive verb [ imperfect & past participle Abounded ; present participle & verbal noun Abounding .] [ Middle English abounden , French abonder , from Latin abundare to overflow, abound; ab + unda wave. Confer Undulate .]
1. To be in great plenty; to be very prevalent; to be plentiful.

The wild boar which abounds in some parts of the continent of Europe.
Chambers.

Where sin abounded grace did much more abound .
Rom. v. 20.

2. To be copiously supplied; -- followed by in or with .

To abound in , to possess in such abundance as to be characterized by. -- To abound with , to be filled with; to possess in great numbers.

Men abounding in natural courage.
Macaulay.

A faithful man shall abound with blessings.
Prov. xxviii. 20.

It abounds with cabinets of curiosities.
Addison.

About preposition [ Middle English aboute , abouten , abuten ; Anglo-Saxon ābutan , onbutan ; on + butan , which is from be by + u tan outward, from ut out. See But , Out .]


1. Around; all round; on every side of. "Look about you." Shak. "Bind them about thy neck." Prov. iii. 3.

2. In the immediate neighborhood of; in contiguity or proximity to; near, as to place; by or on (one's person). "Have you much money about you?" Bulwer.

3. Over or upon different parts of; through or over in various directions; here and there in; to and fro in; throughout.

Lampoons . . . were handed about the coffeehouses.
Macaulay.

Roving still about the world.
Milton.

4. Near; not far from; -- determining approximately time, size, quantity. "To-morrow, about this time." Exod. ix. 18. " About my stature." Shak.

He went out about the third hour.
Matt. xx. 3.

» This use passes into the adverbial sense.

5. In concern with; engaged in; intent on.

I must be about my Father's business.
Luke ii. 49.

6. Before a verbal noun or an infinitive: On the point or verge of; going; in act of.

Paul was now about to open his mouth.
Acts xviii. 14.

7. Concerning; with regard to; on account of; touching. "To treat about thy ransom." Milton.

She must have her way about Sarah.
Trollope.

About adverb
1. On all sides; around.

'Tis time to look about .
Shak.

2. In circuit; circularly; by a circuitous way; around the outside; as, a mile about , and a third of a mile across.

3. Here and there; around; in one place and another.

Wandering about from house to house.
1 Tim. v. 13.

4. Nearly; approximately; with close correspondence, in quality, manner, degree, etc.; as, about as cold; about as high; -- also of quantity, number, time. "There fell . . . about three thousand men." Exod. xxii. 28.

5. To a reserved position; half round; in the opposite direction; on the opposite tack; as, to face about ; to turn one's self about .

To bring about , to cause to take place; to accomplish. -- To come about , to occur; to take place. See under Come . -- To go about , To set about , to undertake; to arrange; to prepare. "Shall we set about some revels?" Shak. -- Round about , in every direction around.

About-sledge noun The largest hammer used by smiths. Weale.

Above preposition [ Middle English above , aboven , abuffe , Anglo-Saxon abufon ; an (or on ) on + be by + ufan upward; confer Goth. uf under. √199. See Over .]
1. In or to a higher place; higher than; on or over the upper surface; over; -- opposed to below or beneath .

Fowl that may fly above the earth.
Gen. i. 20.

2. Figuratively, higher than; superior to in any respect; surpassing; beyond; higher in measure or degree than; as, things above comprehension; above mean actions; conduct above reproach. "Thy worth . . . is actions above my gifts." Marlowe.

I saw in the way a light from heaven above the brightness of the sun.
Acts xxxvi. 13.

3. Surpassing in number or quantity; more than; as, above a hundred. (Passing into the adverbial sense. See Above , adverb , 4.)

above all , before every other consideration; chiefly; in preference to other things.

Over and above , preposition or adverb , besides; in addition to.

Above adverb
1. In a higher place; overhead; into or from heaven; as, the clouds above .

2. Earlier in order; higher in the same page; hence, in a foregoing page. "That was said above ." Dryden.

3. Higher in rank or power; as, he appealed to the court above .

4. More than; as, above five hundred were present.

Above is often used elliptically as an adjective by omitting the word mentioned , quoted , or the like; as, the above observations, the above reference, the above articles. -- Above is also used substantively. "The waters that come down from above ." Josh. iii. 13.

It is also used as the first part of a compound in the sense of before , previously ; as, above -cited, above - described, above -mentioned, above -named, above said, above specified, above -written, above -given.

Above-cited adjective Cited before, in the preceding part of a book or writing.

Above-mentioned, Above-named adjective Mentioned or named before; aforesaid.

Aboveboard adverb Above the board or table. Hence: in open sight; without trick, concealment, or deception. "Fair and aboveboard ." Burke.

» This expression is said by Johnson to have been borrowed from gamesters, who, when they change their cards, put their hands under the table.

Abovedeck adjective On deck; and hence, like aboveboard , without artifice. Smart.

Abovesaid adjective Mentioned or recited before.

Abox adverb & adjective (Nautical) Braced aback.

Abra noun [ Spanish , a bay, valley, fissure.] A narrow pass or defile; a break in a mesa; the mouth of a cañon. [ Southwestern U. S.]

Abracadabra noun [ Latin Of unknown origin.] A mystical word or collocation of letters written as in the figure. Worn on an amulet it was supposed to ward off fever. At present the word is used chiefly in jest to denote something without meaning; jargon.

Abradant noun A material used for grinding, as emery, sand, powdered glass, etc.

Abrade transitive verb [ imperfect & past participle Abraded ; present participle & verbal noun Abrading .] [ Latin abradere , abrasum , to scrape off; ab + radere to scrape. See Rase , Raze .] To rub or wear off; to waste or wear away by friction; as, to abrade rocks. Lyell.

Abrade transitive verb Same as Abraid . [ Obsolete]

Abraham-man, Abram-man noun [ Possibly in allusion to the parable of the beggar Lazarus in Luke xvi. Murray (New Eng. Dict. ). ] One of a set of vagabonds who formerly roamed through England, feigning lunacy for the sake of obtaining alms. Nares.

To sham Abraham , to feign sickness. Goldsmith.

Abrahamic adjective Pertaining to Abraham, the patriarch; as, the Abrachamic covenant.

Abrahamitic, ical adjective Relating to the patriarch Abraham.

Abraid transitive verb & i. [ Middle English abraiden , to awake, draw (a sword), Anglo-Saxon ābredgan to shake, draw; prefix ā- (cf. Goth. us- , German er- , orig. meaning out ) + bregdan to shake, throw. See Braid .] To awake; to arouse; to stir or start up; also, to shout out. [ Obsolete] Chaucer.

Abranchial adjective (Zoology) Abranchiate.

Abranchiata noun plural [ New Latin , from Greek 'a priv. + ..., plural, the gills of fishes.] (Zoology) A group of annelids, so called because the species composing it have no special organs of respiration.

Abranchiate adjective (Zoology) Without gills.

Abrase adjective [ Latin abrasus , past participle of abradere . See Abrade .] Rubbed smooth. [ Obsolete] "An abrase table." B. Jonson.

Abrasion noun [ Latin abrasio , from abradere . See Abrade .]
1. The act of abrading, wearing, or rubbing off; the wearing away by friction; as, the abrasion of coins.

2. The substance rubbed off. Berkeley.

3. (Medicine) A superficial excoriation, with loss of substance under the form of small shreds. Dunglison.

Abrasive adjective Producing abrasion. Ure.

Abraum or A*braum" salts noun [ German , from abräumen to remove.] A red ocher used to darken mahogany and for making chloride of potassium.

Abraxas noun [ A name adopted by the Egyptian Gnostic Basilides, containing the Greek letters α, β, ρ, α, ξ, α, σ, which, as numerals, amounted to 365. It was used to signify the supreme deity as ruler of the 365 heavens of his system.] A mystical word used as a charm and engraved on gems among the ancients; also, a gem stone thus engraved.

Abray v. [ A false form from the preterit abraid , abrayde .] See Abraid . [ Obsolete] Spenser.

Abreaction noun [ Prefix ab- + reaction , after German Abreagirung .] (Psychotherapy) See Catharsis , below.

Abreast adverb [ Prefix a- + breast .]
1. Side by side, with breasts in a line; as, "Two men could hardly walk abreast ." Macaulay.

2. (Nautical) Side by side; also, opposite; over against; on a line with the vessel's beam; -- with of .

3. Up to a certain level or line; equally advanced; as, to keep abreast of [ or with] the present state of science.

4. At the same time; simultaneously. [ Obsolete]

Abreast therewith began a convocation.
Fuller.

Abregge transitive verb See Abridge . [ Obsolete]

Abrenounce transitive verb [ Latin abrenuntiare ; ab + renuntiare . See Renounce .] To renounce. [ Obsolete] "They abrenounce and cast them off." Latimer.

Abrenunciation noun [ Late Latin abrenuntiatio . See Abrenounce .] Absolute renunciation or repudiation. [ Obsolete]

An abrenunciation of that truth which he so long had professed, and still believed.
Fuller.