Webster's Dictionary, 1913

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Vaporousness noun The quality of being vaporous.

Vapory adjective
1. Full of vapors; vaporous.

2. Hypochondriacal; splenetic; peevish.

Vapulation noun [ Latin vapulare to be ...ogged.] The act of beating or whipping. [ Obsolete]

Vaquero noun [ Spanish , cowherd, from vaca a cow, Latin vacca . Confer Vacher .] One who has charge of cattle, horses, etc.; a herdsman. [ Southwestern U. S.]

Vara noun [ Spanish See 1st Vare .] A Spanish measure of length equal to about one yard. The vara now in use equals 33.385 inches. Johnson's Cyc.

Varan noun [ French] (Zoology) The monitor. See Monitor , 3.

Varangian noun One of the Northmen who founded a dynasty in Russia in the 9th century; also, one of the Northmen composing, at a later date, the imperial bodyguard at Constantinople.

Varanus noun [ New Latin , from Arabic waran , waral ; confer French varan , from the Arabic.] (Zoology) A genus of very large lizards native of Asia and Africa. It includes the monitors. See Monitor , 3.

Vare noun [ Spanish vara staff, wand, Latin vara forked pole.] A wand or staff of authority or justice. [ Obsolete]

His hand a vare of justice did uphold.
Dryden.

Vare noun (Zoology) A weasel. [ Prov. Eng.]

Vare widgeon (Zoology) , a female or young male of the smew; a weasel duck; -- so called from the resemblance of the head to that of a vare , or weasel. [ Prov. Eng.]

Varec noun [ French varech ; of Teutonic origin. See Wrack seaweed, wreck.] The calcined ashes of any coarse seaweed used for the manufacture of soda and iodine; also, the seaweed itself; fucus; wrack.

Vargueno (vär*gā"nō) noun [ Said to be from Vargas , name of a village in Spain.] (Art) A decorative cabinet, of a form originating in Spain, the body being rectangular and supported on legs or an ornamental framework and the front opening downwards on hinges to serve as a writing desk.

Vari noun [ Confer French vari .] (Zoology) The ringtailed lemur ( Lemur catta ) of Madagascar. Its long tail is annulated with black and white.

Variability noun [ Confer French variabilité .]


1. The quality or state of being variable; variableness.

2. (Biol.) The power possessed by living organisms, both animal and vegetable, of adapting themselves to modifications or changes in their environment, thus possibly giving rise to ultimate variation of structure or function.

Variable adjective [ Latin variabilis : confer French variable .]


1. Having the capacity of varying or changing; capable of alternation in any manner; changeable; as, variable winds or seasons; a variable quantity.

2. Liable to vary; too susceptible of change; mutable; fickle; unsteady; inconstant; as, the affections of men are variable ; passions are variable .

Lest that thy love prove likewise variable .
Shak.

His heart, I know, how variable and vain!
Milton.

Variable exhaust (Steam Eng.) , a blast pipe with an adjustable opening. -- Variable quantity (Math.) , a variable. -- Variable stars (Astron.) , fixed stars which vary in their brightness, usually in more or less uniform periods.

Syn. -- Changeable; mutable; fickle; wavering; unsteady; versatile; inconstant.

Variable noun
1. That which is variable; that which varies, or is subject to change.

2. (Math.) A quantity which may increase or decrease; a quantity which admits of an infinite number of values in the same expression; a variable quantity; as, in the equation x 2 - y 2 = R 2 , x and y are variables .

3. (Nautical) (a) A shifting wind, or one that varies in force. (b) plural Those parts of the sea where a steady wind is not expected, especially the parts between the trade-wind belts.

Independent variable (Math.) , that one of two or more variables, connected with each other in any way whatever, to which changes are supposed to be given at will. Thus, in the equation x 2 - y 2 = R 2 , if arbitrary changes are supposed to be given to x , then x is the independent variable , and y is called a function of x . There may be two or more independent variables in an equation or problem. Confer Dependent variable , under Dependent .

Variableness noun The quality or state of being variable; variability. James i. 17.

Variably adverb In a variable manner.

Variance noun [ Latin variantia .]


1. The quality or state of being variant; change of condition; variation.

2. Difference that produce dispute or controversy; disagreement; dissension; discord; dispute; quarrel.

That which is the strength of their amity shall prove the immediate author of their variance .
Shak.

3. (Law) A disagreement or difference between two parts of the same legal proceeding, which, to be effectual, ought to agree, -- as between the writ and the declaration, or between the allegation and the proof. Bouvier.

A variance , in disagreement; in a state of dissension or controversy; at enmity. "What cause brought him so soon at variance with himself?" Milton.

Variant adjective [ Latin varians , present participle of variare to change: confer French variant . See Vary .]


1. Varying in from, character, or the like; variable; different; diverse.

2. Changeable; changing; fickle. [ Obsolete]

He is variant , he abit [ abides] nowhere.
Chaucer.

Variant noun [ Confer French variante .] Something which differs in form from another thing, though really the same; as, a variant from a type in natural history; a variant of a story or a word.

Variate transitive verb & i. [ Latin variatus , past participle of variare . See Vary .] To alter; to make different; to vary.

Variation noun [ Middle English variatioun , French variation , Latin variatio . See Vary .]


1. The act of varying; a partial change in the form, position, state, or qualities of a thing; modification; alternation; mutation; diversity; deviation; as, a variation of color in different lights; a variation in size; variation of language.

The essences of things are conceived not capable of any such variation .
Locke.

2. Extent to which a thing varies; amount of departure from a position or state; amount or rate of change.

3. (Gram.) Change of termination of words, as in declension, conjugation, derivation, etc.

4. (Mus.) Repetition of a theme or melody with fanciful embellishments or modifications, in time, tune, or harmony, or sometimes change of key; the presentation of a musical thought in new and varied aspects, yet so that the essential features of the original shall still preserve their identity.

5. (Alg.) One of the different arrangements which can be made of any number of quantities taking a certain number of them together.

Annual variation (Astron.) , the yearly change in the right ascension or declination of a star, produced by the combined effects of the precession of the equinoxes and the proper motion of the star. -- Calculus of variations . See under Calculus . -- Variation compass . See under Compass . -- Variation of the moon (Astron.) , an inequality of the moon's motion, depending on the angular distance of the moon from the sun. It is greater at the octants, and zero at the quadratures. -- Variation of the needle (Geology & Naut.) , the angle included between the true and magnetic meridians of a place; the deviation of the direction of a magnetic needle from the true north and south line; -- called also declination of the needle .

Syn. -- Change; vicissitude; variety; deviation.

Varicella noun [ New Latin , dim. of Late Latin variola smallpox.] (Medicine) Chicken pox.

Varices noun plural See Varix .

Variciform adjective [ Varix + - form .] (Medicine) Resembling a varix.

Varicocele noun [ Varix a dilated vein + Greek ... tumor: confer French varicocèle .] (Medicine) A varicose enlargement of the veins of the spermatic cord; also, a like enlargement of the veins of the scrotum.

Varicose adjective [ Latin varicosus , from varix , -icis , a dilated vein; confer varus bent, stretched, crooked.]


1. Irregularly swollen or enlarged; affected with, or containing, varices, or varicosities; of or pertaining to varices, or varicosities; as, a varicose nerve fiber; a varicose vein; varicose ulcers.

2. (Medicine) Intended for the treatment of varicose veins; -- said of elastic stockings, bandages. and the like.

Varicosis noun [ New Latin See Varix , and -osis .] (Medicine) The formation of varices; varicosity.

Varicosity noun
1. The quality or state of being varicose.

2. An enlargement or swelling in a vessel, fiber, or the like; a varix; as, the varicosities of nerve fibers.

Varicotomy noun [ See Varix ; -tomy .] (Surg.) Excision of a varicosity.

Varicous adjective Varicose. [ Obsolete]

Varied adjective Changed; altered; various; diversified; as, a varied experience; varied interests; varied scenery. -- Va"ried*ly , adverb

The varied fields of science, ever new.
Cowper.

Variegate transitive verb [ imperfect & past participle Variegated ; present participle & verbal noun Variegating .] [ Latin variegatus , past participle of variegare to variegate; varius various + agere to move, make. See Various , and Agent .] To diversify in external appearance; to mark with different colors; to dapple; to streak; as, to variegate a floor with marble of different colors.

The shells are filled with a white spar, which variegates and adds to the beauty of the stone.
Woodward.

Variegated adjective Having marks or patches of different colors; as, variegated leaves, or flowers.

Ladies like variegated tulips show.
Pope.

Variegation noun The act of variegating or diversifying, or the state of being diversified, by different colors; diversity of colors.

Varier noun [ From Vary .] A wanderer; one who strays in search of variety. [ Poetic]

Pious variers from the church.
Tennyson.

Varietal adjective Of or pertaining to a variety; characterizing a variety; constituting a variety, in distinction from an individual or species.

Perplexed in determining what differences to consider as specific, and what as varietal .
Darwin.

Varietas noun [ Latin ] A variety; -- used in giving scientific names, and often abbreviated to var .

Variety noun ; plural Varieties . [ Latin varietas : confer French variété . See Various .]


1. The quality or state of being various; intermixture or succession of different things; diversity; multifariousness.

Variety is nothing else but a continued novelty.
South.

The variety of colors depends upon the composition of light.
Sir I. Newton.

For earth this variety from heaven.
Milton.

There is a variety in the tempers of good men.
Atterbury.

2. That which is various. Specifically: --

(a) A number or collection of different things; a varied assortment; as, a variety of cottons and silks.

He . . . wants more time to do that variety of good which his soul thirsts after.
Law.

(b) Something varying or differing from others of the same general kind; one of a number of things that are akin; a sort; as, varieties of wood, land, rocks, etc.

(c) (Biol.) An individual, or group of individuals, of a species differing from the rest in some one or more of the characteristics typical of the species, and capable either of perpetuating itself for a period, or of being perpetuated by artificial means; hence, a subdivision, or peculiar form, of a species.

» Varieties usually differ from species in that any two, however unlike, will generally propagate indefinitely (unless they are in their nature unfertile, as some varieties of rose and other cultivated plants); in being a result of climate, food, or other extrinsic conditions or influences, but generally by a sudden, rather than a gradual, development; and in tending in many cases to lose their distinctive peculiarities when the individuals are left to a state of nature, and especially if restored to the conditions that are natural to typical individuals of the species. Many varieties of domesticated animals and of cultivated plants have been directly produced by man.

(d) In inorganic nature, one of those forms in which a species may occur, which differ in minor characteristics of structure, color, purity of composition, etc.

» These may be viewed as variations from the typical species in its most perfect and purest form, or, as is more commonly the case, all the forms, including the latter, may rank as Varieties. Thus, the sapphire is a blue variety, and the ruby a red variety, of corundum; again, calcite has many Varieties differing in form and structure, as Iceland spar, dogtooth spar, satin spar, and also others characterized by the presence of small quantities of magnesia, iron, manganese, etc. Still again, there are Varieties of granite differing in structure, as graphic granite, porphyritic granite, and other Varieties differing in composition, as albitic granite, hornblendic, or syenitic, granite, etc.

Geographical variety (Biol.) , a variety of any species which is coincident with a geographical region, and is usually dependent upon, or caused by, peculiarities of climate. -- Variety hybrid (Biol.) , a cross between two individuals of different varieties of the same species; a mongrel.

Syn. -- Diversity; difference; kind. -- Variety , Diversity . A man has a variety of employments when he does many things which are not a mere repetition of the same act; he has a diversity of employments when the several acts performed are unlike each other, that is, diverse . In most cases, where there is variety there will be more or less of diversity , but not always. One who sells railroad tickets performs a great variety of acts in a day, while there is but little diversity in his employment.

All sorts are here that all the earth yields!
Variety without end.
Milton.

But see in all corporeal nature's scene,
What changes, what diversities , have been!
Blackmore.

Variety noun (Theaters) Such entertainment as in given in variety shows; the production of, or performance in, variety shows. [ Cant]

Variety show A stage entertainment of successive separate performances, usually songs, dances, acrobatic feats, dramatic sketches, exhibitions of trained animals, or any specialties. Often loosely called vaudeville show .

Variform adjective [ Latin varius various + -form .] Having different shapes or forms.

Variformed adjective Formed with different shapes; having various forms; variform.

Varify transitive verb [ Latin varius various + -fly .] To make different; to vary; to variegate. [ R.] Sylvester.

Variola noun [ Late Latin , from Latin varius various. See Various .] (Medicine) The smallpox.

Variolar adjective (Medicine) Variolous.

Variolation noun (Medicine) Inoculation with smallpox.

Variole noun [ Confer French variole smallpox. See Variola .]
1. A foveola.

2. (Geol.) A spherule of a variolite.

Variolic adjective (Medicine) Variolous.