Webster's Dictionary, 1913

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Infatuate adjective [ Latin infatuatus , past participle of infatuare to infatuate; prefix in- in + fatuus foolish. See Fatuous .] Infatuated. Bp. Hall.

Infatuate transitive verb [ imperfect & past participle Infatuated ; present participle & verbal noun Infatuating .]


1. To make foolish; to affect with folly; to weaken the intellectual powers of, or to deprive of sound judgment.

The judgment of God will be very visible in infatuating a people . . . ripe and prepared for destruction.
Clarendon.

2. To inspire with a foolish and extravagant passion; as, to be infatuated with gaming.

The people are . . . infatuated with the notion.
Addison.

Infatuated adjective Overcome by some foolish passion or desire; affected by infatuation.

Infatuation noun [ Late Latin infatuatio : confer French infatuation .] The act of infatuating; the state of being infatuated; folly; that which infatuates.

The infatuations of the sensual and frivolous part of mankind are amazing; but the infatuations of the learned and sophistical are incomparably more so.
I. Taylor.

Such is the infatuation of self- love.
Blair.

Infaust adjective [ Latin infaustus ; prefix in- not + faustus fortunate, lucky.] Not favorable; unlucky; unpropitious; sinister. [ R.] Ld. Lytton.

Infausting noun The act of making unlucky; misfortune; bad luck. [ Obsolete] Bacon.

Infeasibility noun The state of being infeasible; impracticability.

Infeasible adjective Not capable of being done or accomplished; impracticable. Glanvill.

Infeasibleness noun The state of quality of being infeasible; infeasibility. W. Montagu.

Infect adjective [ Latin infectus : confer French infect . See Infect , transitive verb ] Infected. Confer Enfect . [ Obsolete] Shak.

Infect transitive verb [ imperfect & past participle Infected ; present participle & verbal noun Infecting .] [ Latin infectus , past participle of inficere to put or dip into, to stain, infect; prefix in- in + facere to make; confer French infecter . See Fact .]


1. To taint with morbid matter or any pestilential or noxious substance or effluvium by which disease is produced; as, to infect a lancet; to infect an apartment.

2. To affect with infectious disease; to communicate infection to; as, infected with the plague.

Them that were left alive being infected with this disease.
Sir T. North.

3. To communicate to or affect with, as qualities or emotions, esp. bad qualities; to corrupt; to contaminate; to taint by the communication of anything noxious or pernicious. Cowper.

Infected Ston's daughters with like heat.
Milton.

4. (Law) To contaminate with illegality or to expose to penalty.

Syn. -- To poison; vitiate; pollute; defile.

Infecter noun One who, or that which, infects.

Infectible adjective Capable of being infected.

Infection noun [ Confer French infection , Latin infectio a dyeing.]


1. The act or process of infecting.

There was a strict order against coming to those pits, and that was only to prevent infection .
De Foe.

2. That which infects, or causes the communicated disease; any effluvium, miasm, or pestilential matter by which an infectious disease is caused.

And that which was still worse, they that did thus break out spread the infection further by their wandering about with the distemper upon them.
De Foe.

3. The state of being infected; contamination by morbific particles; the result of infecting influence; a prevailing disease; epidemic.

The danger was really very great, the infection being so very violent in London.
De Foe.

4. That which taints or corrupts morally; as, the infection of vicious principles.

It was her chance to light
Amidst the gross infections of those times.
Daniel.

5. (Law) Contamination by illegality, as in cases of contraband goods; implication.

6. Sympathetic communication of like qualities or emotions; influence.

Through all her train the soft infection ran.
Pope.

Mankind are gay or serious by infection .
Rambler.

Syn. -- Infection , Contagion . -- Infection is often used in a definite and limited sense of the transmission of affections without direct contact of individuals or immediate application or introduction of the morbific agent, in contradistinction to contagion , which then implies transmission by direct contact. Quain . See Contagious .

Infectious adjective [ Confer French infectieux .]


1. Having qualities that may infect; communicable or caused by infection; pestilential; epidemic; as, an infectious fever; infectious clothing; infectious air; infectious vices.

Where the infectious pestilence.
Shak.

2. Corrupting, or tending to corrupt or contaminate; vitiating; demoralizing.

It [ the court] is necessary for the polishing of manners . . . but it is infectious even to the best morals to live always in it.
Dryden.

3. (Law) Contaminating with illegality; exposing to seizure and forfeiture.

Contraband articles are said to be of an infectious nature.
Kent.

4. Capable of being easily diffused or spread; sympathetic; readily communicated; as, infectious mirth.

The laughter was so genuine as to be infectious .
W. Black.

Syn. -- See Contagious .

Infectious disease (a) Any disease caused by the entrance, growth, and multiplication of bacteria or protozoans in the body; a germ disease. It may not be contagious. (b) Sometimes, as distinguished from contagious disease , such a disease communicated by germs carried in the air or water, and thus spread without contact with the patient, as measles.

Infectiously adverb In an infectious manner. Shak.

Infectiousness noun The quality of being infectious.

Infective adjective [ Latin infectivus pertaining to dyeing.] Infectious. Beau. & Fl.

True love . . . hath an infective power.
Sir P. Sidney.

Infecund adjective [ Latin infecundus : confer French infécond . See In- not, and Fecund .] Unfruitful; not producing young; barren; infertile. [ Obsolete] Evelyn.

Infecundity noun [ Latin infecunditas : confer French infécondité .] Want of fecundity or fruitfulness; barrenness; sterility; unproductiveness.

Infecundous adjective [ See Infecund .] Infertile; barren; unprofitable; unproductive. [ Obsolete] Glanvill.

Infeeble transitive verb See Enfeeble .

Infelicitous adjective Not felicitous; unhappy; unfortunate; not fortunate or appropriate in application; not well said, expressed, or done; as, an infelicitous condition; an infelicitous remark; an infelicitous description; infelicitous words.

Infelicity noun ; plural Infelicities . [ Latin infelicitas : confer French infélicité . See In- not, and Felicity .]


1. The state or quality of being infelicitous; unhappiness; misery; wretchedness; misfortune; want of suitableness or appropriateness. I. Watts.

Whatever is the ignorance and infelicity of the present state, we were made wise and happy.
Glanvill.

2. That (as an act, word, expression, etc.) which is infelicitous; as, infelicities of speech.

Infelonious adjective Not felonious, malignant, or criminal. G. Eliot.

Infelt adjective [ Prefix in- in + felt .] Felt inwardly; heartfelt. [ R.]

The baron stood afar off, or knelt in submissive, acknowledged, infelt inferiority.
Milman.

Infeodation noun (Law) See Infeudation .

Infeoff transitive verb (Law) See Enfeoff .

Infeoffment noun (Law) See Enfeoffment .

Infer transitive verb [ imperfect & past participle Inferred ; present participle & verbal noun Inferring .] [ Latin inferre to bring into, bring forward, occasion, infer; prefix in- in + ferre to carry, bring: confer French inférer . See 1 st Bear .]


1. To bring on; to induce; to occasion. [ Obsolete] Harvey.

2. To offer, as violence. [ Obsolete] Spenser.

3. To bring forward, or employ as an argument; to adduce; to allege; to offer. [ Obsolete]

Full well hath Clifford played the orator,
Inferring arguments of mighty force.
Shak.

4. To derive by deduction or by induction; to conclude or surmise from facts or premises; to accept or derive, as a consequence, conclusion, or probability; to imply; as, I inferred his determination from his silence.

To infer is nothing but by virtue of one proposition laid down as true, to draw in another as true.
Locke.

Such opportunities always infer obligations.
Atterbury.

5. To show; to manifest; to prove. [ Obsolete]

The first part is not the proof of the second, but rather contrariwise, the second inferreth well the first.
Sir T. More.

This doth infer the zeal I had to see him.
Shak.

Inferable (ĭn*fẽr"ȧ*b'l or ĭn*fĕr"-; 277) adjective Capable of being inferred or deduced from premises. [ Written also inferrible .] H. Spencer.

A sufficient argument . . . is inferable from these premises.
Burke.

Inference noun [ From Infer .]


1. The act or process of inferring by deduction or induction.

Though it may chance to be right in the conclusions, it is yet unjust and mistaken in the method of inference .
Glanvill.

2. That which inferred; a truth or proposition drawn from another which is admitted or supposed to be true; a conclusion; a deduction. Milton.

These inferences , or conclusions, are the effects of reasoning, and the three propositions, taken all together, are called syllogism, or argument.
I. Watts.

Syn. -- Conclusion; deduction; consequence. -- Inference , Conclusion . An inference is literally that which is brought in ; and hence, a deduction or induction from premises, -- something which follows as certainly or probably true. A conclusion is stronger than an inference ; it shuts us up to the result, and terminates inquiry. We infer what is particular or probable; we conclude what is certain. In a chain of reasoning we have many inferences , which lead to the ultimate conclusion . "An inference is a proposition which is perceived to be true, because of its connection with some known fact." "When something is simply affirmed to be true, it is called a proposition ; after it has been found to be true by several reasons or arguments, it is called a conclusion ." I. Taylor.

Inferential adjective Deduced or deducible by inference. " Inferential proofs." J. S. Mill.

Inferentially adverb By way of inference.

Inferior adjective [ Latin , compar. of inferus that is below, underneath, the lower; akin to English under : confer French inférieur . See Under .]


1. Lower in place, rank, excellence, etc.; less important or valuable; subordinate; underneath; beneath.

A thousand inferior and particular propositions.
I. Watts.

The body, or, as some love to call it, our inferior nature.
Burke.

Whether they are equal or inferior to my other poems, an author is the most improper judge.
Dryden.

2. Poor or mediocre; as, an inferior quality of goods.

3. (Astron.) (a) Nearer the sun than the earth is; as, the inferior or interior planets; an inferior conjunction of Mercury or Venus. (b) Below the horizon; as, the inferior part of a meridian.

4. (Botany) (a) Situated below some other organ; -- said of a calyx when free from the ovary, and therefore below it, or of an ovary with an adherent and therefore inferior calyx. (b) On the side of a flower which is next the bract; anterior.

5. (Min.) Junior or subordinate in rank; as, an inferior officer.

Inferior court (Law) , a court subject to the jurisdiction of another court known as the superior , or higher , court . -- Inferior letter , Inferior figure (Print.) , a small letter or figure standing at the bottom of the line (opposed to superior letter or figure ), as in A 2 , B n , 2 and n are inferior characters. -- Inferior tide , the tide corresponding to the moon's transit of the meridian, when below the horizon.

Inferior noun A person lower in station, rank, intellect, etc., than another.

A great person gets more by obliging his inferior than by disdaining him.
South.

Inferiority [ Confer French infériorité .] The state of being inferior; a lower state or condition; as, inferiority of rank, of talents, of age, of worth.

A deep sense of our own great inferiority .
Boyle.

Inferiorly adverb In an inferior manner, or on the inferior part.

Inferiæ noun plural [ Latin , from inferus underneath.] (Rom. Antiq.) Sacrifices offered to the souls of deceased heroes or friends.

Infernal adjective [ French infernal , Latin infernalis , from infernus that which lies beneath, the lower. See Inferior .]


1. Of or pertaining to or suitable for the lower regions, inhabited, according to the ancients, by the dead; pertaining to Pluto's realm of the dead, the Tartarus of the ancients.

The Elysian fields, the infernal monarchy.
Garth.

2. Of or pertaining to, resembling, or inhabiting, hell; suitable for hell, or to the character of the inhabitants of hell; hellish; diabolical; as, infernal spirits, or conduct.

The instruments or abettors in such infernal dealings.
Addison.

Infernal machine , a machine or apparatus maliciously designed to explode, and destroy life or property. - - Infernal stone ( lapis infernalis ), lunar caustic; formerly so called. The name was also applied to caustic potash.

Syn. -- Tartarean; Stygian; hellish; devilish; diabolical; satanic; fiendish; malicious.

Infernal noun An inhabitant of the infernal regions; also, the place itself. [ Obsolete] Drayton.

Infernally adverb In an infernal manner; diabolically. " Infernally false." Bp. Hacket.

Inferno noun [ Italian See Infernal .] The infernal regions; hell. Also used fig.

At each sudden explosion in the inferno below they sprang back from the brink [ of the volcanic crater].
D. C. Worcester.

Inferobranchian noun (Zoology) One of the Inferobranchiata.

Inferobranchiata noun plural [ New Latin See Inferobranchiate .] (Zoology) A suborder of marine gastropod mollusks, in which the gills are between the foot and the mantle.

Inferobranchiate adjective [ Latin inferus lower + English branchiate .] (Zoology) Having the gills on the sides of the body, under the margin of the mantle; belonging to the Inferobranchiata.

Inferrible adjective Inferable.

Infertile adjective [ Latin infertilis : confer French infertile . See In- not, and Fertile .] Not fertile; not productive; barren; sterile; as, an infertile soil.

Infertilely adverb In an infertile manner.