Webster's Dictionary, 1913
[ From Anglo-Saxon swipian
to whip, shake, whirl; akin to swāpan
to sweep. See Swoop
.] Nimble; quick.
[ Obsolete or Prov. Eng. & Slang]
Swirl transitive verb & i.
[ imperfect & past participle Swirled
; present participle & verbal noun Swirling
.] [ Akin to Norw. svirla
to whirl, freq. of sverra
to whirl, Danish svirre
, German schwirren
to whiz, to buzz. √177. See Swarm
] To whirl, or cause to whirl, as in an eddy.
"The river swirled
along." C. Kingsley.
Swirl noun A whirling motion; an eddy, as of water; a whirl. "The silent swirl of bats." Mrs. Browning.
Swish transitive verb
[ From the sound. Confer Swash
.] 1. To flourish, so as to make the sound swish . Coleridge. 2. To flog; to lash.
[ Slang] Thackeray.
Swish intransitive verb To dash; to swash.
1. A sound of quick movement, as of something whirled through the air. [ Colloq.] 2. (Nautical) Light driven spray. [ Eng.]
Swiss noun sing. & plural
[ French Suisse
, of German origin. Confer Switzer
.] A native or inhabitant of Switzerland; a Switzer; the people of Switzerland.
Swiss adjective Of or pertaining to Switzerland, or the people of Switzerland.
[ Confer OD. swick
a scourage, a whip. Confer Swink
.] 1. A small, flexible twig or rod.
Mauritania, on the fifth medal, leads a horse with something like a thread; in her other hand she holds a switch . Addison. 2. (Railways) A movable part of a rail; or of opposite rails, for transferring cars from one track to another. 3. A separate mass or trees of hair, or of some substance (at jute) made to resemble hair, worn on the head by women. 4. (Electricity) A mechanical device for shifting an electric current to another circuit. Safety switch (Railways)
, a form of switch contrived to prevent or lessen the danger of derailment of trains.
-- Switch back (Railways)
, an arrangement of tracks whereby elevations otherwise insurmountable are passed. The track ascends by a series of zigzags, the engine running alternately forward and back, until the summit is reached.
-- Switch board (Electricity)
, a collection of switches in one piece of apparatus, so arranged that a number of circuits may be connected or combined in any desired manner.
-- Switch grass
. (Botany) See under Grass .
Switch transitive verb
[ imperfect & past participle Switched
; present participle & verbal noun Switching
.] 1. To strike with a switch or small flexible rod; to whip. Chapman. 2. To swing or whisk; as, to switch a cane. 3. To trim, as, a hedge.
[ Prov. Eng.] Halliwell. 4. To turn from one railway track to another; to transfer by a switch; -- generally with off , from , etc.; as, to switch off a train; to switch a car from one track to another. 5. (Eccl.) To shift to another circuit.
Switch intransitive verb To walk with a jerk. [ Prov. Eng.]
Switch noun (Electricity) A device for shifting an electric current to another circuit, or for making and breaking a circuit.
[ See Sweet
.] A beverage of molasses and water, seasoned with vinegar and ginger.
[ U. S.]
Switching adjective & noun from Switch , v. Switching engine
, a locomotive for switching cars from one track to another, and making up trains; -- called also switch engine .
; plural Switchmen One who tends a switch on a railway.
Switchy adjective Whisking. [ Colloq.] Coombe.
[ Anglo-Saxon swī...e
strongly, violently.] Instantly; quickly; speedily; rapidly.
That thou doest, do thou swithe . Wyclif (John xiii. 27).
[ Confer German schweizer
. Confer Swiss
.] A native or inhabitant of Switzerland; a Swiss.
Swive transitive verb
[ Middle English swiven
, from Anglo-Saxon swīfan
. See Swivel
.] To copulate with (a woman).
[ Obsolete] Chaucer.
[ Anglo-Saxon swīfan
to move quickly, to remove; akin to Icelandic sveifla
to whirl, shake, svīfa
to ramble, to turn. See Swoop
, and confer Swift
a reel, Swift
] 1. (Mech.) A piece, as a ring or hook, attached to another piece by a pin, in such a manner as to permit rotation about the pin as an axis. 2. (Mil.) A small piece of ordnance, turning on a point or swivel; -- called also swivel gun . Wilhelm. Swivel bridge
, a kind of drawbridge that turns round on a vertical axis; a swing bridge.
-- Swivel hook
, a hook connected with the iron strap of a pulley block by a swivel joint, for readily taking the turns out of a tackle.
-- Swivel joint
, a joint, the two pieces composing which turn round, with respect to each other, on a longitudinal pin or axis, as in a chain, to prevent twisting.
Swivel intransitive verb To swing or turn, as on a pin or pivot.
Swivel-eyed adjective Squint- eyed. [ Prov. Eng.]
Swizzle transitive verb To drink; to swill. Halliwell.
Swizzle noun Ale and beer mixed; also, drink generally. [ Prov. Eng.]
Swob noun & v. See Swab .
Swobber noun 1. See Swabber . 2. plural Four privileged cards, formerly used in betting at the game of whist.
[ Written also swabber
Swollen past participle of Swell .
Swollen adjective Enlarged by swelling; immoderately increased; as, swollen eyes; swollen streams.
Swoln Contraction of Swollen , past participle Milton.
obsolete imperfect of Swim . Shak.
Swoon intransitive verb
[ imperfect & past participle Swooned
; present participle & verbal noun Swooning
.] [ Middle English swounen
, for swo...nien
, from swo...en
to sigh deeply, to droop, Anglo-Saxon swōgan
to sough, sigh; confer ge swōgen
senseless, swooned, ge swōwung
a swooning. Confer Sough
.] To sink into a fainting fit, in which there is an apparent suspension of the vital functions and mental powers; to faint; -- often with away .
The sucklings swoon in the streets of the city. Lam. ii. 11.
The most in years . . . swooned first away for pain. Dryden.
He seemed ready to swoon away in the surprise of joy. Tatler.
Swoon noun A fainting fit; syncope.
Swooning adjective & noun from Swoon , v.
Swoop transitive verb
[ imperfect & past participle Swooped
; present participle & verbal noun Swooping
.] [ Middle English swopen
, usually, to sweep, As. swāpan
to sweep, to rush; akin to German schweifen
to rove, to ramble, to curve, Old High German sweifan
to whirl, Icelandic sveipa
to sweep; also to Anglo-Saxon swīfan
to move quickly. Confer Sweep
.] 1. To fall on at once and seize; to catch while on the wing; as, a hawk swoops a chicken. 2. To seize; to catch up; to take with a sweep.
And now at last you came to swoop it all. Dryden.
The grazing ox which swoops it [ the medicinal herb] in with the common grass. Glanvill.
Swoop intransitive verb
1. To descend with closed wings from a height upon prey, as a hawk; to stoop. 2. To pass with pomp; to sweep. [ Obsolete] Drayton.
Swoop noun A falling on and seizing, as the prey of a rapacious bird; the act of swooping.
The eagle fell, . . . and carried away a whole litter of cubs at a swoop . L'Estrange.
Swoopstake adverb Altogether; indiscriminately. [ R.] Shak.
Swop v. & noun Same as Swap . Dryden.
[ Middle English swerd
, Anglo-Saxon sweord
; akin to OFries. swerd
, Dutch zwaard
, Old Saxon swerd
, Old High German swert
, German schwert
, Icelandic sverð
, Swedish svärd
, Danish sværd
; of uncertain origin.] 1. An offensive weapon, having a long and usually sharp-pointed blade with a cutting edge or edges. It is the general term, including the small sword, rapier, saber, scimiter, and many other varieties. 2. Hence, the emblem of judicial vengeance or punishment, or of authority and power.
He [ the ruler] beareth not the sword in vain. Rom. xiii. 4.
She quits the balance, and resigns the sword . Dryden. 3. Destruction by the sword, or in battle; war; dissension.
I came not to send peace, but a sword . Matt. x. 34. 4. The military power of a country.
He hath no more authority over the sword than over the law. Milton. 5. (Weaving) One of the end bars by which the lay of a hand loom is suspended. Sword arm
, the right arm.
-- Sword bayonet
, a bayonet shaped somewhat like a sword, and which can be used as a sword.
-- Sword bearer
, one who carries his master's sword; an officer in London who carries a sword before the lord mayor when he goes abroad.
-- Sword belt
, a belt by which a sword is suspended, and borne at the side.
-- Sword blade
, the blade, or cutting part, of a sword.
-- Sword cane
, a cane which conceals the blade of a sword or dagger, as in a sheath.
-- Sword dance
. (a) A dance in which swords are brandished and clashed together by the male dancers. Sir W. Scott. (b) A dance performed over swords laid on the ground, but without touching them.
-- Sword fight
, fencing; a combat or trial of skill with swords; swordplay.
-- Sword grass
. (Botany) See Gladen .
-- Sword knot
, a ribbon tied to the hilt of a sword.
-- Sword law
, government by the sword, or by force; violence. Milton.
-- Sword lily
. (Botany) See Gladiolus .
-- Sword mat (Nautical)
, a mat closely woven of yarns; -- so called from a wooden implement used in its manufacture.
-- Sword shrimp (Zoology)
, a European shrimp ( Pasiphæa sivado ) having a very thin, compressed body.
-- Sword stick
, a sword cane.
-- To measure swords with one
. See under Measure , transitive verb
-- To put to the sword
. See under Put .
Swordbill noun (Zoology) A humming bird ( Docimastes ensiferus ) having a very long, slender bill, exceeding the length of the body of the bird.
Sworded adjective [ Confer Anglo-Saxon ge swurdod .] Girded with a sword. Milton.
Sworder noun One who uses, or fights with, a sword; a swordsman; a soldier; a cutthroat. [ Obsolete] Shak.
Swordfish noun 1. (Zoology) (a) A very large oceanic fish ( Xiphias gladius ), the only representative of the family Xiphiidæ . It is highly valued as a food fish. The bones of the upper jaw are consolidated, and form a long, rigid, swordlike beak; the dorsal fin is high and without distinct spines; the ventral fins are absent. The adult is destitute of teeth. It becomes sixteen feet or more long. (b) The gar pike. (c) The cutlass fish. 2. (Astron.) A southern constellation. See Dorado , 1. Swordfish sucker (Zoology)
, a remora ( Remora brachyptera ) which attaches itself to the swordfish.
Swordick noun (Zoology) The spotted gunnel ( Murænoides gunnellus ). [ Prov. Eng.]
Swording noun Slashing with a sword. Tennyson.
Swordless adjective Destitute of a sword.
; plural Swordmen A swordsman.
Swordplay noun Fencing; a sword fight.
Swordplayer noun A fencer; a gladiator; one who exhibits his skill in the use of the sword.