Webster's Dictionary, 1913
[ Middle English moder
, Anglo-Saxon mōdor
; akin to Dutch moeder
, Old Saxon mōdar
, German mutter
, Old High German muotar
, Icelandic mōðir
, Dan. & Swedish moder
, OSlav. mati
, Russian mate
, Ir. & Gael. mathair
, Latin mater
, Greek mh`thr
, Sanskrit mātr
; confer Sanskrit mā
to measure. √268. Confer Material
.] 1. A female parent; especially, one of the human race; a woman who has borne a child. 2. That which has produced or nurtured anything; source of birth or origin; generatrix.
Alas! poor country! . . . it can not Shak.
Be called our mother , but our grave.
I behold . . . the solitary majesty of Crete, mother of a religion, it is said, that lived two thousand years. Landor. 3. An old woman or matron.
[ Familiar] 4. The female superior or head of a religious house, as an abbess, etc. 5. Hysterical passion; hysteria.
[ Obsolete] Shak. Mother Carey's chicken (Zoology)
, any one of several species of small petrels, as the stormy petrel ( Procellaria pelagica ), and Leach's petrel ( Oceanodroma leucorhoa ), both of the Atlantic, and O. furcata of the North Pacific.
-- Mother Carey's goose (Zoology)
, the giant fulmar of the Pacific. See Fulmar .
-- Mother's mark (Medicine)
, a congenital mark upon the body; a nævus.
Mother adjective Received by birth or from ancestors; native, natural; as, mother language; also acting the part, or having the place of a mother; producing others; originating.
It is the mother falsehood from which all idolatry is derived. T. Arnold. Mother cell (Biol.)
, a cell which, by endogenous divisions, gives rise to other cells (daughter cells); a parent cell.
-- Mother church
, the original church; a church from which other churches have sprung; as, the mother church of a diocese.
-- Mother country
, the country of one's parents or ancestors; the country from which the people of a colony derive their origin.
- - Mother liquor (Chemistry)
, the impure or complex residual solution which remains after the salts readily or regularly crystallizing have been removed.
-- Mother queen
, the mother of a reigning sovereign; a queen mother.
-- Mother tongue
. (a) A language from which another language has had its origin
. (b) The language of one's native land; native tongue.
-- Mother water
. See Mother liquor (above).
-- Mother wit
, natural or native wit or intelligence.
Mother transitive verb
[ imperfect & past participle Mothered
; present participle & verbal noun Mothering
.] To adopt as a son or daughter; to perform the duties of a mother to.
The queen, to have put lady Elizabeth besides the crown, would have mothered another body's child. Howell.
[ Akin to Dutch modder
mud, German moder
mold, mud, Danish mudder
mud, and to English mud
. See Mud
.] A film or membrane which is developed on the surface of fermented alcoholic liquids, such as vinegar, wine, etc., and acts as a means of conveying the oxygen of the air to the alcohol and other combustible principles of the liquid, thus leading to their oxidation.
» The film is composed of a mass of rapidly developing microörganisms of the genus Mycoderma
, and in the mother of vinegar
the microörganisms ( Mycoderma aceti
) composing the film are the active agents in the Conversion of the alcohol into vinegar. When thickened by growth, the film may settle to the bottom of the fluid. See Acetous fermentation
, under Fermentation
Mother intransitive verb To become like, or full of, mother, or thick matter, as vinegar.
Mother-in-law noun The mother of one's husband or wife.
Mother-naked adjective Naked as when born.
Mother-of-pearl noun (Zoology) The hard pearly internal layer of several kinds of shells, esp. of pearl oysters, river mussels, and the abalone shells; nacre. See Pearl .
Mother-of-thyme noun (Botany) An aromatic plant ( Thymus Serphyllum ); -- called also wild thyme .
Mother's Day A day appointed for the honor and uplift of motherhood by the loving remembrance of each person of his mother through the performance of some act of kindness, visit, tribute, or letter. The founder of the day is Anna Jarvis, of Philadelphia, who designated the second Sunday in May, or for schools the second Friday, as the time, and a white carnation as the badge.
Mothered adjective Thick, like mother; viscid.
They oint their naked limbs with mothered oil. Dryden.
Motherhood noun The state of being a mother; the character or office of a mother.
Mothering noun A rural custom in England, of visiting one's parents on Midlent Sunday, -- supposed to have been originally visiting the mother church to make offerings at the high altar.
Motherland noun The country of one's ancestors; -- same as fatherland .
Motherless adjective [ Anglo-Saxon mōdorleás .] Destitute of a mother; having lost a mother; as, motherless children.
Motherliness noun The state or quality of being motherly.
[ Anglo-Saxon mōdorlic
.] Of or pertaining to a mother; like, or suitable for, a mother; tender; maternal; as, motherly authority, love, or care. Hooker. Syn.
-- Maternal; paternal. -- Motherly
, being Anglo-Saxon, is the most familiar word of the two when both have the same meaning. Besides this, maternal
is confined to the feelings of a mother toward her own
children, whereas motherly
has a secondary sense, denoting a care like
that of a mother for her offspring. There is, perhaps, a growing tendency thus to separate the two, confining motherly
to the latter signification. "They termed her the great mother, for her motherly
care in cherishing her brethren whilst young." Sir W. Raleigh.
Motherly adverb In a manner of a mother.
Motherwort noun (Botany) (a) A labiate herb ( Leonurus Cardiaca ), of a bitter taste, used popularly in medicine; lion's tail. (b) The mugwort. See Mugwort .
Mothery (mŭ&thlig;"ẽr*ȳ) adjective Consisting of, containing, or resembling, mother (in vinegar).
Mothy adjective Infested with moths; moth-eaten. "An old mothy saddle." Shak.
Motif noun [ French] Motive.
[ French] 1. In literature and the fine arts, a salient feature or element of a composition or work; esp., the theme, or central or dominant feature; specif. (Music) , a motive.
This motif , of old things lost, is a favorite one for the serious ballade. R. M. Alden.
The design . . . is . . . based on the peacock -- a motif favored by decorative artists of all ages. R. D. Benn. 2. (Dressmaking) A decorative appliqué design or figure, as of lace or velvet, used in trimming.
Motific adjective [ Latin motus motion (fr. movere to move) + facere to make.] Producing motion. [ R.]
[ See Motive
.] 1. (Biol.) Having powers of self-motion, though unconscious; as, the motile spores of certain seaweeds. 2. Producing motion; as, motile powers.
Motile noun (Psychol.) A person whose prevailing mental imagery takes the form of inner feelings of action, such as incipient pronunciation of words, muscular innervations, etc.
Motility noun [ Confer French motilité .] (Physiol.) Capability of motion; contractility.
[ French, from Latin motio
, from movere
, to move. See Move
.] 1. The act, process, or state of changing place or position; movement; the passing of a body from one place or position to another, whether voluntary or involuntary; -- opposed to rest .
Speaking or mute, all comeliness and grace Milton. 2. Power of, or capacity for, motion.
attends thee, and each word, each motion , forms.
Devoid of sense and motion . Milton. 3. Direction of movement; course; tendency; as, the motion of the planets is from west to east.
In our proper motion we ascend. Milton. 4. Change in the relative position of the parts of anything; action of a machine with respect to the relative movement of its parts.
This is the great wheel to which the clock owes its motion . Dr. H. More. 5. Movement of the mind, desires, or passions; mental act, or impulse to any action; internal activity.
Let a good man obey every good motion rising in his heart, knowing that every such motion proceeds from God. South. 6. A proposal or suggestion looking to action or progress; esp., a formal proposal made in a deliberative assembly; as, a motion to adjourn.
Yes, I agree, and thank you for your motion . Shak. 7. (Law) An application made to a court or judge orally in open court. Its object is to obtain an order or rule directing some act to be done in favor of the applicant. Mozley & W. 8. (Mus.) Change of pitch in successive sounds, whether in the same part or in groups of parts.
The independent motions of different parts sounding together constitute counterpoint. Grove.
» Conjunct motion
is that by single degrees of the scale. Contrary motion
is that when parts move in opposite directions. Disjunct motion
is motion by skips. Oblique motion
is that when one part is stationary while another moves. Similar
or direct motion
is that when parts move in the same direction. 9. A puppet show or puppet.
What motion 's this? the model of Nineveh? Beau. & Fl.
» Motion, in mechanics, may be simple or compound. Simple motions
are: ( a
) straight translation
, which, if of indefinite duration, must be reciprocating. ( b
) Simple rotation
, which may be either continuous or reciprocating, and when reciprocating is called oscillating
. ( c
, which, if of indefinite duration, must be reciprocating. Compound motion
consists of combinations of any of the simple motions. Center of motion
, Harmonic motion
, etc. See under Center , Harmonic , etc.
-- Motion block (Steam Engine)
, a crosshead.
-- Perpetual motion (Mech.)
, an incessant motion conceived to be attainable by a machine supplying its own motive forces independently of any action from without. Syn.
-- See Movement
Motion intransitive verb
[ imperfect & past participle Motioned
; present participle & verbal noun Motioning
.] 1. To make a significant movement or gesture, as with the hand; as, to motion to one to take a seat. 2. To make proposal; to offer plans.
[ Obsolete] Shak.
Motion transitive verb 1. To direct or invite by a motion, as of the hand or head; as, to motion one to a seat. 2. To propose; to move.
I want friends to motion such a matter. Burton.
Motion picture A moving picture.
Motioner noun One who makes a motion; a mover. Udall.
Motionist noun A mover. [ Obsolete]
Motionless adjective Without motion; being at rest.
Motivate transitive verb
[ imperfect & past participle -vated
; present participle & verbal noun -vating
.] [ From Motive
] To provide with a motive; to move; impel; induce; incite.
- - Mo`ti*va"tion noun William James.
[ French motif
, Late Latin motivum
, from motivus
moving, from Latin movere
, to move. See Move
.] 1. That which moves; a mover.
[ Obsolete] Shak. 2. That which incites to action; anything prompting or exciting to choise, or moving the will; cause; reason; inducement; object.
By motive , I mean the whole of that which moves , excites, or invites the mind to volition, whether that be one thing singly, or many things conjunctively. J. Edwards. 3. (Mus.) The theme or subject; a leading phrase or passage which is reproduced and varied through the course of a comor a movement; a short figure, or melodic germ, out of which a whole movement is develpoed. See also Leading motive , under Leading .
[ Written also motivo
.] 4. (Fine Arts) That which produces conception, invention, or creation in the mind of the artist in undertaking his subject; the guiding or controlling idea manifested in a work of art, or any part of one. Syn.
-- Incentive; incitement; inducement; reason; spur; stimulus; cause. -- Motive
is the word originally used in speaking of that which determines the choice. We call it an inducement
when it is attractive in its nature. We call it a reason
when it is more immediately addressed to the intellect in the form of argument.
Motive adjective Causing motion; having power to move, or tending to move; as, a motive argument; motive power. " Motive faculty." Bp. Wilkins. Motive power (Machinery) , a natural agent, as water, steam, wind, electricity, etc., used to impart motion to machinery; a motor; a mover.
Motive transitive verb To prompt or incite by a motive or motives; to move.
Motiveless adjective Destitute of a motive; not incited by a motive. -- Mo"tive*less*ness , noun G. Eliot.
[ See Motive
] 1. The power of moving or producing motion. 2. The quality of being influenced by motives.
[ Italian See Motive
] See Motive , noun , 3, 4.
[ Middle English mottelee
; confer Old French mattelé
clotted, curdled, OF, ciel mattonné
a mottled sky, mate
, curdled milk, Prov. German matte
curd. Confer Mottle
.] 1. Variegated in color; consisting of different colors; dappled; party-colored; as, a motley coat. 2. Wearing motley or party-colored clothing. See Motley , noun , 1.
fool." Shak. 3. Composed of different or various parts; heterogeneously made or mixed up; discordantly composite; as, motley style. Byron.
Motley noun Man of motley , a fool. [ Obsolete] Beau. & Fl.
1. A combination of distinct colors; esp., the party-colored cloth, or clothing, worn by the professional fool. Chaucer. " Motley 's the only wear." Shak. 2. Hence, a jester, a fool. [ Obsolete] Shak.
Motley-minded adjective Having a mind of a jester; foolish. Shak.
[ Confer Momot
.] (Zoology) Any one of several species of long-tailed, passerine birds of the genus Momotus , having a strong serrated beak. In most of the species the two long middle tail feathers are racket-shaped at the tip, when mature. The bird itself is said by some writers to trim them into this shape. They feed on insects, reptiles, and fruit, and are found from Mexico to Brazil. The name is derived from its note.
[ Written also momot
Moto noun [ Italian ] (Mus.) Movement; manner of movement; particularly, movement with increased rapidity; -- used especially in the phrase con moto , directing to a somewhat quicker movement; as, andante con moto , a little more rapidly than andante , etc.
Motograph noun [ Latin movere , motum , to move + -graph .] (Electricity) A device utilized in the making of a loud-speaking telephone, depending on the fact that the friction between a metallic point and a moving cylinder of moistened chalk, or a moving slip of paper, on which it rests is diminished by the passage of a current between the point and the moving surface. -- Mo`to*graph"ic adjective
Moton noun [ Etymol. uncertain.] (Anc. Armor) A small plate covering the armpit in armor of the 14th century and later.