Archive for December, 2009

To ZEST. v.a.

To ZEST. v.a. To heighten by an additional relish.


ZEA’LOUSLY. adv. [from zealous.] With passionate ardour.
Thy care is fixt, and zealously attends,
To fill thy odorous lamp with deeds of light,
And hope that reaps not shame. Milton.
To enter into a party as into an order of friars, with so re-
signed an obedience to superiors, is very unsuitable with the
civil and religious liberties we so zealously assert. Swift.

ZA’NY. n.s.

ZA’NY. n.s. [Probably of zanei.] The contraction of Gio-
vanni or sanna, a scoff, according to Skinner.] One em-
ployed to raise laughter by his gestures, actions and speeches;
a merry Andrew; a buffoon.
Some carrytale, some pleaseman, some slight zany,
Some mumblenews, some trencher knight, some Dick,
Told our intents before. Shakespeare.
Then write that I may follow, and so be
Thy echo, thy debtor, thy foil, thy zany,
I shall be thought, if mine like thine I shape,
All the world’s lion, though I be thy ape. Donne.
Oh, great restorer of the good old stage,
Preacher at once, and zany of thy age. Pope’s Dunciad.

YPI’GHT. part.

YPI’GHT. part. [y and pight, from pitch.] Fixed.
That same wicked wight
His dwelling has low in an hollow cave,
Far underneath a craggy clift ypight,
Dark, doleful, dreary, like a greedy grave. Spenser.

YE’STY. adj.

YE’STY. adj. [from yest.] Frothy; spumy.
Though you untie the winds, and let them fight
Against the churches; though the yesty waves
Confound and swallow navigation up. Shakesp. Macbeth.

To YEARN. v.n.

To YEARN. v.n. [eannan, Saxon.] To feel great internal
uneasiness. In Spenser it is sometimes earn.
He despis’d to tread in due degree,
But chaff’d, and foam’d, with courage fierce and stern,
And to be eas’d of that base burden still did yearn. Spenser.
Make the libbard stern
Leave roaring, when in rage he for revenge did yearn. Spens.
Though peeping close into the thick,
Might see the moving of some quick:
But were it fairy, fiend, or snake,
My courage earned it to wake,
And manfully thereat shot. Spenser.
Falstaff, he is dead,
And we must yern therefore. Shakespeare’s Hen. V.
Joseph made haste; for his bowels did yern upon his bro-
there: and he sought where to weep, and he enter’d into his
chamber. Gen. xliii. 30.

YA’WNING. adj.

YA’WNING. adj. [from yawn.] Sleepy; slumbering.
Ere to black Hecat’s summons
The shard-born beetle, with his drowsy hums,
Hath rung night’s yawning peal, there shall be done
A deed of dreadful note. Shakesp. Macbeth.


X Is a letter, which, though found in Saxon words, begins no word in the English language.


WRO’NGHEAD. WRONGHE’ADED. adj. [wrong and head.] Having a per-
verse understanding.
Much do I suffer, much to keep in peace
This jealous, waspish, wronghead, rhyming race. Pope.

WRI’TER. n.s.

WRI’TER. n.s. [from write.]
I. One who practices the art of writing.
2. An authour.
All three were ruined by justice and sentence, as delinquents;
and all three famous writers. Bacon.
Peaceable times are the best to live in, though not so proper
to furnish materials for a writer. Addison’s Freeholder.
Writers are more often influenced by a desire of fame, than
a regard to the publick good. Addison’s Freeholder.
Would a writer know how to behave himself with relation to
posterity, let him consider in old books what he finds that he
is glad to know, and what omissions he most laments. Swift.