Webster's Dictionary, 1913

Search Webster
Word starts with Word or meaning contains
Prose noun [ French prose , Latin prosa , from prorsus , prosus , straight forward, straight on, for proversus ; pro forward + versus , past participle of vertere to turn. See Verse .]
1. The ordinary language of men in speaking or writing; language not cast in poetical measure or rhythm; -- contradistinguished from verse , or metrical composition .

I speak in prose , and let him rymes make.
Chaucer.

Things unattempted yet in prose or rhyme.
Milton.

I wish our clever young poets would remember my homely definitions of prose and poetry, that is; prose -- words in their best order; poetry -- the best order.
Coleridge.

2. Hence, language which evinces little imagination or animation; dull and commonplace discourse.

3. (R. C. Ch.) A hymn with no regular meter, sometimes introduced into the Mass. See Sequence .

Prose adjective
1. Pertaining to, or composed of, prose; not in verse; as, prose composition.

2. Possessing or exhibiting unpoetical characteristics; plain; dull; prosaic; as, the prose duties of life.

Prose transitive verb [ imperfect & past participle Prosed ; present participle & verbal noun Prosing .]
1. To write in prose.

2. To write or repeat in a dull, tedious, or prosy way.

Prose intransitive verb
1. To write prose.

Prosing or versing, but chiefly this latter.
Milton.

Prosector noun [ Latin , an anatomist, from prosecare to cut up; pro before + secare to cut.] One who makes dissections for anatomical illustration; usually, the assistant of a professional anatomist.

Prosecutable adjective Capable of being prosecuted; liable to prosecution.

Prosecute transitive verb [ imperfect & past participle Prosecuted ; present participle & verbal noun Prosecuting .] [ Latin prosecutus , past participle of prosequi to follow, pursue. See Pursue .]


1. To follow or pursue with a view to reach, execute, or accomplish; to endeavor to obtain or complete; to carry on; to continue; as, to prosecute a scheme, hope, or claim.

I am beloved Hermia;
Why should not I, then, prosecute my right ?
Shak.

2. To seek to obtain by legal process; as, to prosecute a right or a claim in a court of law.

3. (Law) To pursue with the intention of punishing; to accuse of some crime or breach of law, or to pursue for redress or punishment, before a legal tribunal; to proceed against judicially; as, to prosecute a man for trespass, or for a riot.

To acquit themselves and prosecute their foes.
Milton.

Prosecute intransitive verb
1. To follow after. [ Obsolete] Latimer.

2. (Law) To institute and carry on a legal prosecution; as, to prosecute for public offenses. Blackstone.

Prosecution noun [ Latin prosecutio a following.]
1. The act or process of prosecuting, or of endeavoring to gain or accomplish something; pursuit by efforts of body or mind; as, the prosecution of a scheme, plan, design, or undertaking; the prosecution of war.

Keeping a sharp eye on her domestics . . . in prosecution of their various duties.
Sir W. Scott.

2. (Law) (a) The institution and carrying on of a suit in a court of law or equity, to obtain some right, or to redress and punish some wrong; the carrying on of a judicial proceeding in behalf of a complaining party, as distinguished from defense . (b) The institution, or commencement, and continuance of a criminal suit; the process of exhibiting formal charges against an offender before a legal tribunal, and pursuing them to final judgment on behalf of the state or government, as by indictment or information. (c) The party by whom criminal proceedings are instituted. Blackstone. Burrill. Mozley & W.

Prosecutor noun [ Confer Latin prosecutor an attendant.]
1. One who prosecutes or carries on any purpose, plan, or business.

2. (Law) The person who institutes and carries on a criminal suit against another in the name of the government. Blackstone.

Prosecutrix noun [ New Latin ] A female prosecutor.

Proselyte noun [ Middle English proselite , Old French proselite , French proselytus , Greek ..., adj., that has come, noun , a new comer, especially, one who has come over from heathenism to the Jewish religion; ... toward, to + (prob.) the root of ... to come.] A new convert especially a convert to some religion or religious sect, or to some particular opinion, system, or party; thus, a Gentile converted to Judaism, or a pagan converted to Christianity, is a proselyte .

Ye [ Scribes and Pharisees] compass sea and land to make one proselyte .
Matt. xxiii. 15.

Fresh confidence the speculatist takes
From every harebrained proselyte he makes.
Cowper.

Syn. -- See Convert .

Proselyte transitive verb [ imperfect & past participle Proselyted ; present participle & verbal noun Proselyting .] To convert to some religion, opinion, or system; to bring over. Dr. H. More.

Proselytism noun [ Confer French prosélytisme .]
1. The act or practice of proselyting; the making of converts to a religion or a religious sect, or to any opinion, system, or party.

They were possessed of a spirit of proselytism in the most fanatical degree.
Burke.

2. Conversion to a religion, system, or party.

Proselytize transitive verb [ imperfect & past participle proselytized ; present participle & verbal noun Proselytizing .] To convert to some religion, system, opinion, or the like; to bring, or cause to come, over; to proselyte.

One of those whom they endeavor to proselytize .
Burke.

Proselytize intransitive verb To make converts or proselytes.

Proselytizer noun One who proselytes.

Proseman noun A writer of prose. [ R.]

Proseminary noun A seminary which prepares pupils for a higher institution. T. Warton.

Prosemination noun [ Latin proseminare , proseminatum , to disseminate.] Propagation by seed. [ Obsolete] Sir M. Hale.

Prosencephalic adjective (Anat.) Of or pertaining to the prosencephalon.

Prosencephalon noun [ New Latin , from Greek ... toward, near to + English encephalon .] [ Sometimes abbreviated to proen.] (Anat.) (a) The anterior segment of the brain, including the cerebrum and olfactory lobes; the forebrain. (b) The cerebrum. Huxley.

Prosenchyma noun [ New Latin , from Greek ... near + -enchyma , as in parenchyma .] (Botany) A general term applied to the tissues formed of elongated cells, especially those with pointed or oblique extremities, as the principal cells of ordinary wood.

Proser noun
1. A writer of prose. [ Obsolete]

2. One who talks or writes tediously. Sir W. Scott.

Prosiliency noun [ Latin prosilere to leap forth.] The act of leaping forth or forward; projection. "Such prosiliency of relief." Coleridge.

Prosily adverb In a prosy manner.

Prosimetrical adjective [ Prose + metrical .] Consisting both of prose and verse. Clarke.

Prosimiæ noun plural [ New Latin See Pro- . and Simia .] (Zoology) Same as Lemuroidea .

Prosiness noun The quality or state of being prosy; tediousness; tiresomeness.

Prosing noun Writing prose; speaking or writing in a tedious or prosy manner. Sir W. Scott.

Prosingly adverb Prosily.

Prosiphon noun [ Prefix pro- for + siphon .] (Zoology) A minute tube found in the protoconch of ammonites, and not connected with the true siphon.

Prosit interj. [ Latin , 3d pers. sing. subjunctive present of prodesse to do good; pro for + esse to be.] Lit., may it do (you) good; -- a salutation used in well wishing, esp. among Germans, as in drinking healths.

Proslavery adjective [ Prefix pro- + slavery .] Favoring slavery. -- noun Advocacy of slavery.

Prosobranch noun (Zoology) One of the Prosobranchiata.

Prosobranchiata noun plural [ New Latin , from Greek ... forward, further + ... a gill.] (Zoology) The highest division, or subclass, of gastropod mollusks, including those that have the gills situated anteriorly, or forward of the heart, and the sexes separate.

Prosocœle noun [ Greek ... forward + ... hollow.] (Anat.) The entire cavity of the prosencephalon. B. G. Wilder.

Prosocœlia noun ; plural Prosocœlle , [ New Latin ] (Anat.) Same as Prosocœle .

Prosodiacal adjective Prosodical.

Prosodiacally adverb Prosodically.

Prosodial adjective Prosodical.

Prosodian noun A prosodist. Rush.

Prosodical adjective [ Confer French prosodique , Latin prosodiacus .] Of or pertaining to prosody; according to the rules of prosody. -- Pro*sod"ic*al*ly , adverb

Prosodist noun One skilled in prosody.

Prosody noun [ Latin prosodia the tone or accent of a syllable, Greek ... a song sung to, or with, an accompanying song, the accent accompanying the pronunciation; ... to + ... song, ode: confer French prosodie . See Ode .] That part of grammar which treats of the quantity of syllables, of accent, and of the laws of versification or metrical composition.

Prosoma noun ; plural Prosomata . [ New Latin , from Greek ... before + ..., ..., body.] (Zoology) The anterior of the body of an animal, as of a cephalopod; the thorax of an arthropod.

Prosopalgia noun [ New Latin , from Greek ... face + ... pain.] (Medicine) Facial neuralgia.

Prosopocephala noun plural [ New Latin , from Greek pro`swpon face, appearance + ... head.] (Zoology) Same as Scaphopoda .

Prosopolepsy noun [ Greek ...; pro`swpon a face, a person + ... a taking, receiving, ... to take.] Respect of persons; especially, a premature opinion or prejudice against a person, formed from his external appearance. [ R.] Addison.

Prosopopœia noun [ Latin , from Greek ...; pro`swpon a face, a person + ... to make.] (Rhet.) A figure by which things are represented as persons, or by which things inanimate are spoken of as animated beings; also, a figure by which an absent person is introduced as speaking, or a deceased person is represented as alive and present. It includes personification , but is more extensive in its signification.

Prosopulmonata noun plural [ New Latin , from Greek ... forward + Latin pulmo a lung.] (Zoology) A division of pulmonate mollusks having the breathing organ situated on the neck, as in the common snail.