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AB'ACOT, in architecture, a small member representing the abacot, or cap of state, in the form of a double crown, anciently worn by the kings of England.

ABACTOR (Latin, from abigo, to drive away), in law, one who steals numbers of cattle in distinction to one who steals one or two.

AB'ACUS, Latin, from aßag, any thing flat, as a bench, a table. 1. A. small sanded or waxed table, or board, on which, of old, mathematicians traced their diagrams, and children were taught to write.

-2. An instrument to facilitate arithmetical calculations, similar to the swanpan of the Chinese. It consisted of a board of an oblong figure divided by lines or cords. A counter placed on the lower line denoted one, on the second ten, on the third a hundred, &c.: on the spaces between the lines, counters denoted half as much as on the lines immediately above. Other schemes are called by the same name.3. In architecture, the upper member of the capital of a Greek Doric column, and a collection of members or mouldings, serving as a kind of crowning in other orders. It is usually square, but in the Corinthian order it is encurvated, which curving is called the arch of the abacus. The upper member of the abacus in this order is sometimes called the boultine, or enchinus: the member under it, the fillet and the third and undermost member, the plinth. See CAPITAL.4. A table of numbers ready cast up, to expedite arithmetical operations, e. g. the Abacus Pythagoricus, the common multiplication table, invented by Pythagoras: the Abacus Logisticus, or canon of sexagesimals, is a rectangled triangle, whose sides forming the right angle contain the numbers from 1 to 60, and its area the result of each pair of the numbers perpendicularly opposite.

ABACUS HARMONICUS, the structure and disposition of the keys of a musical in


ABACUS MAJOR, a trough to wash ore

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for father. In the Coptic, Syriac, and Ethiopic churches, it is the title of bishops, and the bishops bestow it by way of distinction on the bishop of Alexandria. Hence the titles of baba, papa, pope.

(a, b, c). A. psalms, are those whose parts are arranged according to the letters of the Hebrew alphabet, e. g. psalms 25, 34, 119.

AB'BACY, from abba (low Lat. abbatia), the dignity, rights, and privileges of an abbot..

ABBE, (abby), from abba. Originally, an abbot; subsequently, a common title in Catholic countries, implying no determinate rank, office, or rights; and latterly, an academic, but not properly a church


AB'BESS, from abba, the female superior of a nunnery.

ABBEY, from abba, a monastery or religious society of persons of either sex. The males, called monks, are governed by an abbot; the females, called nuns, are governed by an abbess. Abbeys were suppressed in England by Henry VIII.

AB'BOT (formerly abbat, from abba, Latinised abbas), the superior of an abbey or monastery. Abbots are regular and commendatory. The regular abbots are such as take the vow; the commendatory are seculars, but obliged, when of suitable age, to take orders. The title is also borne by bishops whose sees were formerly abbeys. The A. of unreason was a sort of histrionic character peculiar to Scotland, similar to the lord of misrule in England.

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AB'DALS, a sect of fanatics in Persia, who sometimes run out into the streets, and attempt to kill all they meet who are of a different religion; and if they are themselves killed, they are considered martyrs.

ABDERITE, an inhabitant of Abdera, in Thrace; Democritus was so called because he was a native of it, and as he was given to laughter, foolish laughter is called abderian.

ABDICATE, in a general sense, to relinquish, from Lat. ab-dico, to send away. To relinquish an office before the expiry of the time of service. In the civil law, to disinherit, e. g. a son during the lifetime of the father.

ABDICATION, from abdicate, the act whereby a person in office gives it up before the time of service is expired. The term is chiefly used with reference to the supreme magistrate; we say of the monarch that he abdicated the throne, and of a minister that he resigned his office.

ABDOMEN, in anatomy, the lower belly, or that part of the body between the thorax and the pelvis. It is lined by the peritoneum, and contains the stomach, liver, spleen, pancreas, kidneys, bladder, and intestines. It is separated from the chest internally by the diaphragm, and externally by the extremities of the ribs. It is divided into four regions,-the epigastric, umbilical, hypogastric, and lumbar. The term is usually derived from Lat. abdo, to hide, and omentum, the caul, because it conceals the viscera; but some maintain that men is merely a grammatical augmentation, and that abdomen is formed from abdo in the same way as legumen is formed from lego.

ABDOMINAL, belonging to the abdomen, e. g. 4. aorta, that portion of the aorta which is below the diaphragm: A. ring, the inguinal ring, an oblique tendinous ring in both groins, through which pass the spermatic cord in men, and the round ligaments of the uterus in women.

ABDOMINALS, Latinized abdominales, a class of fishes whose ventral fins are placed behind the pectoral. The class contains nine genera, the loche, salmon, pike, argentine, atherine, mullet, flying-fish, herring, and carp. They chiefly inhabit fresh water.

ABDOMINOUS, belonging to the abdomen. ABDUCENT, Lat. abducens. In anatomy, muscles which pull back the parts into which they are inserted are called abducent muscles, or abductors; muscles which have an opposite action are called adducent muscles, or adductors. The sixth pair of nerves are also called abducent (nervi ab

ducentes), from their distribution to the abductor muscle of the eyeball.

ABDUCTION, Lat. abductio, from abduco. See ABDUCENT. 1. In physiology, the action by which muscles draw back by their contraction the parts into which they are inserted; and also the state of a part so withdrawn, e. g. when certain muscles withdraw the arm from the side, or the thumb from the rest of the fingers, they are said to perform the abduction of those parts, and the parts are said to be in a state of abduction.-2. In surgery, a species of fracture in which the parts recede from each other. It is sometimes used to denote a sprain.-3. In law, the taking away of a child, a ward, a wife, &c., either by fraud, persuasion, or open violence.-4. In logic, a species of argumentation, called by the Greeks apagoge, in which the major is evident; but the minor is not so clear as not to require further proof; e. g. in this syllogismWhatever God has revealed is certainly true: Now God has revealed a future retribution; Therefore a future retribution is certainly


ABDUCTOR, Lat. abductor-oris, from abduco. In anatomy, a muscle which performs the abduction of any part; its antagonist is called an adductor, e. g. the abductor pollicis pedis, which pulls the great toe from the rest.

ABECEDA'RIAN, or BECE'DARY, one who teaches the letters of the alphabet. A novice in any art or science.

ABECEDARY, pertaining to or formed of the letters of the alphabet. See AB


ABELE, OF ABEL-TREE, the hoary or white poplar (populus aloa). The wood is white and soft, fit only for coarse work. The best sort of abel-trees having come from Holland, it is in some places known by the name of Dutch beech.

ABEL'IANS, ABELO'NIANS, or A'BELITES. In church history, a sect which arose in Africa during the reign of Arcadius; they married, but lived in continence, after the manner, as they pretended, of Abel, and attempted to maintain the sect by adopting the children of others.

ABELMOSK, ABELMOSCH, or ABELMUSK, the Syrian mallow, or musk okro, a species of hibiscus (H. abelmoschus). The plant rises on an herbaceous stalk of three or four feet in height. The seeds have a musky odour; hence its name, habb el misk (Arabic), musk seed. It is a native of the East Indies.

the progressive motion of light, and the earth's annual motion in its orbit. The A. of a planet is equal to the space it appears to move, as seen from the earth, during the time that the light employs in passing from the planet to the earth. Thus, in the sun the aberration (in longitude) is constantly 20", that being the space moved by the earth in 8' 7" of time, the interval that light takes to pass from the sun to the earth. From this the aberration of the other planets is readily found; for, knowing the distance of the sun from the earth, it will be, by common proportion, as the distance of the earth to the sun is to the planet, so is 8' 7" to the time the light takes to pass from the planet to the earth; then finding the planet's geocentric motion in that time, it will be the aberration of the planet. 2. In optics, a deviation of the rays of light, when inflected by a lens or speculum, by which they are prevented from uniting in one point. It is occasioned by the figure of the reflecting body, or by themselves: this last is called the Newthe different refrangibility of the rays tonian aberration, from the name of its illustrious discoverer. Crown of aberration, a luminous circle round the disc of the sun, depending on the aberration of the solar rays, by which his apparent diameter is enlarged.-3. In medical language, (1.) The passage of a fluid in the living body into vessels not destined to receive it; (2.) The determination of a fluid to a part different to that to which it is usually directed; (3.) The alienation of the mind.

ABERRATION, Lat. aberratio, from aberro, to wander from; wandering, deviation. 1. In astronomy, a small apparent motion of the fixed stars, occasioned by

ABESASUM, the oxide which forms on the iron of wheels: formerly used in medicine.

ABET', in law, to encourage, counsel, incite, or assist, in a eriminal action; from Sax. betan, to push forward, or ad


ABEVACUATION, from ab, dim. and eva

ABELLICE'A, an old name of the logwood-cuation (q. v.). In medicine, a partial tree (hæmatoxylon campechianum). evacuation of the morbid humours, either by nature or art.

ABET'TOR, One who abets or incites. In law, one who encourages another to the performance of an unlawful action. In Scotch law, an abettor is said to be art and part. In treason, there are no abettors; all concerned are principals.

ABEY'ANCE, from Norm. abaizance, in expectation (bayance). In expectation of law. The fee-simple or inheritance of lands is in abeyance, when there is no person in whom it can vest; so that it is in a state of expectancy, until a proper person shall appear; e. g. if land is leased to a man for life, remainder to another for years, the remainder for years is in abeyance, until the death of the lessee for life.

AB'HAL, the fruit of a species of Asiatic cypress, said to be a powerful emmenagogue.

ABHO'RRERS, a name given to a party in England about 1680, in opposition to those who petitioned for a redress of gricvances.

AB'IB, the first month of the Jewish ecclesiastical year, called also Nisan. It begins at the spring equinox, and answers to the end of March and beginning of April. Its name, which means a full ear of corn, is derived from the wheat being full grown in Egypt at that season.

ABIDE, from Sax. abidan, to continue. Abiding by writings, in Scotch law, means compelling a person to abide by a false deed as if it were true.

ABIES, the trivial name of the Norway spruce fir (pinus abies), which affords the Burgundy pitch, and common frankincense (abietis resina). Name, from axios, a wild pear, to which its fruit bears some resemblance.

ABIETIC, from abies. A. acid (acidum abieticum), an acid discovered in the resin of the pinus abies. It crystallises in square plates, is soluble in alcohol, and forms

salts with the alkalies.

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The "abjuration of heresy," is the recantation of any religious doctrine as false.

ABLACTATION, the weaning of a child from the breast. In gardening, a mode of grafting, in which the scion is not separated from the parent stock till it is firmly united to the new one. It is now called grafting by approach, or inarching.

ABLAQUEATION, from Lat. ab and laquear, a covering. In gardening, the operation of laying bare the roots of trees to the air and water.

ABLATION, Lat. ab-latio, a carrying away. In medicine, the taking away from the body whatever is hurtful: evacuations generally. In chemistry, the removal of whatever is finished.

used in this case when the actions of car

ABLATIVE, Lat. ablativus, from aufero, to carry away (of ab and fero). In Latin grammar, the name of the sixth case, peculiar to that language. Words are rying away or taking from are signified. It is therefore opposed to the datice. It is sometimes called the comparative case, as being much used in comparing things. Ablative absolute, is when a word in that case is independent in construction of the rest of the sentence.

ABLE-BODIED, in nautical language, it denotes skill in seamanship.

ABLEC TI (selected). In the Roman army, a select body of soldiers chosen from among those called extraordinarii.

In Roman

ABLE’GIMA (απολεγμοι). archeology, the parts of the victim which were offered to the gods in sacrifice. The word is derived from ablegere, in imitation of the Greek απολέγειν.

ABLEP'SY, Lat. ablepsia, from a, not, and Basra, to see. Blindness.

AB'LUENT, Lat. abluens, from ab-luo, to wash away (Ir. lo, or lua, water.) In medicine, that which purifies the blood. It is sometimes used in the sense of diluent, and abstergent.

ABLU'TION, Lat. ab-lutio (of luo, or lavo, to wash). 1. Purification by water. Appropriately, the washing of the body as a preparation for religious duties, enjoined by Moses, and still practised in oriental countries. The priests of Egypt used daily ablutions; the Grecians, sprinklings; the Romans, lustrations; the Jews, washings and baptisms. The ancient Christians had their ablutions before communion; the Roman Catholic has his before mass; on Good Friday, the Syrians, Copts, &c., have solemn washings.-2. In chemistry, the separation of extraneous matters from any substance by washing.-3. In medicine, the washing of the body.

ABNORMAL, or ABNORMOUS, Lat. abnormis, irregular. Deviating from nature: unnatural.

ABOARD (a and board), within a ship,

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ABOMINATION, detestation: from Lat. abomino (of ab and omen), to deprecate as ominous. A. of desolation, foretold by Daniel, the statue of Jupiter Olympius, which Antiochus Epiphanes caused to be put up in the temple of Jerusalem. A. of desolation, mentioned by the evangelists, the ensigns of the Roman army when Jerusalem was besieged by Titus.

ABо'REA, a species of duck called, by Edwards, the black-bellied whistling duck. It is of a reddish brown colour, with a sort of crest on its head: the belly is spotted with black and white.

ABORIGINES, the first inhabitants of a country as the Celts in Europe, and the Indians in America. The term is Lat. from ab, and origo, origin. Adj. aboriginal. The name was first given to the ancient or original inhabitants of Italy, who, according to tradition, were conducted into Latium by Saturn.

miscarriage are, however, generally used synonymously.

ABOR'TIVE, applied, 1. To a medicine which has the power of exciting abortion (q.v.); 2. To flowers or florets which do not produce perfect seed. Abortive flowers are generally such as have stamens, but no pistils.

ABOR TIENT, Lat. abortiens, miscarrying. A term sometimes used by botanical writers, as synonymous with sterilis, barren.

ABORTION, Lat. abortio, miscarriage, (of ab and orior). The premature expulsion of the foetus. If it occur before the end of the sixth month it is called abortion, or miscarriage; if between the sixth and end of the ninth month, premature labour. Miscarriage is restricted by some writers to the expulsion of the fœtus within six weeks after conception: abortion and

ABOUT, from Sax. abutan, coinciding with aut. About ship, the order to the ship's crew for tacking; the situation of the ship immediately after she has tacked.

AB Ovo, from the beginning: literally from the egg, with which the banquet began.

ABP., abbreviation for archbishop. ABRACADAB'RA, the name of a deity worshipped by the Syrians. The name was supposed by the cabalists to possess great virtues in preventing and curing fevers. To render its powers certain, it was written on paper as many times as it contained letters, omitting the last letter every time, thus-








The word is a corruption of Abrasadabra, which means "divine decree."

ABRAC'ALAN, a cabalistic term, to which the rabbins ascribed the same virtues as to the Abracadabra.

ABRAHAMIC, pertaining to Abraham the patriarch, e. g. the Abrahamic covenant. Abrahamites, a sect of heretics who adopted the errors of Paulus, and who are therefore called Paulicians. Also an order of monks exterminated in the ninth century, by Theophilus, for worshipping images.


ABRAN CHIA, from a, not, and Bearxia. gills. Animals which have no gills, or apparent organs of respiration.

ABRANCHIATA, from abranchia (q. v.), the third order of Articulata, having no apparent external organ of respiration, but seem to respire, some by the entire surface of the skin, and others by internal cavities. They have a closed circulating system, usually filled with red blood. This order is divided into two families: the A. setigera, which are provided with set which enable them to crawl, e. g. the earth-worm; and the A. asetigera, which are aquatic, and have no setæ, e. g. the leech.

ABRASAX, a word which has been derived from the initial letters of the Hebrew

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