The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48:
Horse \Horse\ (h[^o]rs), n. [AS. hors; akin to OS. hros, D. &
OHG. ros, G. ross, Icel. hross; and perh. to L. currere to
run, E. course, current Cf. Walrus.]
1. (Zool.) A hoofed quadruped of the genus Equus;
especially, the domestic horse (Equus caballus), which
was domesticated in Egypt and Asia at a very early period.
It has six broad molars, on each side of each jaw, with
six incisors, and two canine teeth, both above and below.
The mares usually have the canine teeth rudimentary or
wanting. The horse differs from the true asses, in having
a long, flowing mane, and the tail bushy to the base.
Unlike the asses it has callosities, or chestnuts, on all
its legs. The horse excels in strength, speed, docility,
courage, and nobleness of character, and is used for
drawing, carrying, bearing a rider, and like purposes.
Note: Many varieties, differing in form, size, color, gait,
speed, etc., are known, but all are believed to have
been derived from the same original species. It is
supposed to have been a native of the plains of Central
Asia, but the wild species from which it was derived is
not certainly known. The feral horses of America are
domestic horses that have run wild; and it is probably
true that most of those of Asia have a similar origin.
Some of the true wild Asiatic horses do, however,
approach the domestic horse in several characteristics.
Several species of fossil (Equus) are known from the
later Tertiary formations of Europe and America. The
fossil species of other genera of the family
Equid[ae] are also often called horses, in general
2. The male of the genus Equus, in distinction from the
female or male; usually, a castrated male.
3. Mounted soldiery; cavalry; -- used without the plural
termination; as, a regiment of horse; -- distinguished
The armies were appointed, consisting of twenty-five
thousand horse and foot. --Bacon.
4. A frame with legs, used to support something; as, a
clotheshorse, a sawhorse, etc.
5. A frame of timber, shaped like a horse, on which soldiers
were made to ride for punishment.
6. Anything, actual or figurative, on which one rides as on a
horse; a hobby.
7. (Mining) A mass of earthy matter, or rock of the same
character as the wall rock, occurring in the course of a
vein, as of coal or ore; hence, to take horse -- said of a
vein -- is to divide into branches for a distance.
(a) See Footrope, a.
(b) A breastband for a leadsman.
(c) An iron bar for a sheet traveler to slide upon.
(d) A jackstay. --W. C. Russell. --Totten.
9. (Student Slang)
(a) A translation or other illegitimate aid in study or
examination; -- called also trot, pony, Dobbin.
(b) Horseplay; tomfoolery.
[Webster 1913 Suppl.]
10. heroin. [slang]
11. horsepower. [Colloq. contraction]
Note: Horse is much used adjectively and in composition to
signify of, or having to do with, a horse or horses,
like a horse, etc.; as, horse collar, horse dealer or
horse?dealer, horsehoe, horse jockey; and hence, often
in the sense of strong, loud, coarse, etc.; as,
horselaugh, horse nettle or horse-nettle, horseplay,
horse ant, etc.
Black horse, Blood horse, etc. See under Black, etc.
Horse aloes, caballine aloes.
Horse ant (Zool.), a large ant (Formica rufa); -- called
also horse emmet.
Horse artillery, that portion of the artillery in which the
cannoneers are mounted, and which usually serves with the
cavalry; flying artillery.
Horse balm (Bot.), a strong-scented labiate plant
(Collinsonia Canadensis), having large leaves and
Horse bean (Bot.), a variety of the English or Windsor bean
(Faba vulgaris), grown for feeding horses.
Horse boat, a boat for conveying horses and cattle, or a
boat propelled by horses.
Horse bot. (Zool.) See Botfly, and Bots.
Horse box, a railroad car for transporting valuable horses,
as hunters. [Eng.]
Horse breaker or Horse trainer, one employed in subduing
or training horses for use.
(a) A railroad car drawn by horses. See under Car.
(b) A car fitted for transporting horses.
Horse cassia (Bot.), a leguminous plant (Cassia
Javanica), bearing long pods, which contain a black,
catharic pulp, much used in the East Indies as a horse
Horse cloth, a cloth to cover a horse.
Horse conch (Zool.), a large, spiral, marine shell of the
genus Triton. See Triton.
(a) One that runs horses, or keeps horses for racing.
(b) A dealer in horses. [Obs.] --Wiseman.
Horse crab (Zool.), the Limulus; -- called also
horsefoot, horsehoe crab, and king crab.
Horse crevall['e] (Zool.), the cavally.
Horse emmet (Zool.), the horse ant.
Horse finch (Zool.), the chaffinch. [Prov. Eng.]
Horse gentian (Bot.), fever root.
Horse iron (Naut.), a large calking iron.
Horse latitudes, a space in the North Atlantic famous for
calms and baffling winds, being between the westerly winds
of higher latitudes and the trade winds. --Ham. Nav.
Horse mackrel. (Zool.)
(a) The common tunny (Orcynus thunnus), found on the
Atlantic coast of Europe and America, and in the
(b) The bluefish (Pomatomus saltatrix).
(c) The scad.
(d) The name is locally applied to various other fishes,
as the California hake, the black candlefish, the
jurel, the bluefish, etc.
Horse marine (Naut.), an awkward, lubbery person; one of a
mythical body of marine cavalry. [Slang]
Horse mussel (Zool.), a large, marine mussel (Modiola
modiolus), found on the northern shores of Europe and
Horse nettle (Bot.), a coarse, prickly, American herb, the
Horse parsley. (Bot.) See Alexanders.
Horse purslain (Bot.), a coarse fleshy weed of tropical
America (Trianthema monogymnum).
Horse race, a race by horses; a match of horses in running
Horse racing, the practice of racing with horses.
Horse railroad, a railroad on which the cars are drawn by
horses; -- in England, and sometimes in the United States,
called a tramway.
Horse run (Civil Engin.), a device for drawing loaded
wheelbarrows up an inclined plane by horse power.
Horse sense, strong common sense. [Colloq. U.S.]
Horse soldier, a cavalryman.
Horse sponge (Zool.), a large, coarse, commercial sponge
Horse stinger (Zool.), a large dragon fly. [Prov. Eng.]
Horse sugar (Bot.), a shrub of the southern part of the
United States (Symplocos tinctoria), whose leaves are
sweet, and good for fodder.
Horse tick (Zool.), a winged, dipterous insect (Hippobosca
equina), which troubles horses by biting them, and
sucking their blood; -- called also horsefly, horse
louse, and forest fly.
Horse vetch (Bot.), a plant of the genus Hippocrepis
(Hippocrepis comosa), cultivated for the beauty of its
flowers; -- called also horsehoe vetch, from the
peculiar shape of its pods.
Iron horse, a locomotive. [Colloq.]
Salt horse, the sailor's name for salt beef.
To look a gift horse in the mouth, to examine the mouth of
a horse which has been received as a gift, in order to
ascertain his age; -- hence, to accept favors in a
critical and thankless spirit. --Lowell.
To take horse.
(a) To set out on horseback. --Macaulay.
(b) To be covered, as a mare.
(c) See definition 7 (above).
The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48:
Take \Take\, v. t. [imp. Took (t[oo^]k); p. p. Taken
(t[=a]k'n); p. pr. & vb. n. Taking.] [Icel. taka; akin to
Sw. taga, Dan. tage, Goth. t[=e]kan to touch; of uncertain
1. In an active sense; To lay hold of; to seize with the
hands, or otherwise; to grasp; to get into one's hold or
possession; to procure; to seize and carry away; to
convey. Hence, specifically:
(a) To obtain possession of by force or artifice; to get
the custody or control of; to reduce into subjection
to one's power or will; to capture; to seize; to make
prisoner; as, to take an army, a city, or a ship;
also, to come upon or befall; to fasten on; to attack;
to seize; -- said of a disease, misfortune, or the
This man was taken of the Jews. --Acts xxiii.
Men in their loose, unguarded hours they take;
Not that themselves are wise, but others weak.
They that come abroad after these showers are
commonly taken with sickness. --Bacon.
There he blasts the tree and takes the cattle
And makes milch kine yield blood. --Shak.
(b) To gain or secure the interest or affection of; to
captivate; to engage; to interest; to charm.
Neither let her take thee with her eyelids.
Cleombroutus was so taken with this prospect,
that he had no patience. --Wake.
I know not why, but there was a something in
those half-seen features, -- a charm in the very
shadow that hung over their imagined beauty, --
which took me more than all the outshining
loveliness of her companions. --Moore.
(c) To make selection of; to choose; also, to turn to; to
have recourse to; as, to take the road to the right.
Saul said, Cast lots between me and Jonathan my
son. And Jonathan was taken. --1 Sam. xiv.
The violence of storming is the course which God
is forced to take for the destroying . . . of
(d) To employ; to use; to occupy; hence, to demand; to
require; as, it takes so much cloth to make a coat; it
takes five hours to get to Boston from New York by
This man always takes time . . . before he
passes his judgments. --I. Watts.
(e) To form a likeness of; to copy; to delineate; to
picture; as, to take a picture of a person.
Beauty alone could beauty take so right.
(f) To draw; to deduce; to derive. [R.]
The firm belief of a future judgment is the most
forcible motive to a good life, because taken
from this consideration of the most lasting
happiness and misery. --Tillotson.
(g) To assume; to adopt; to acquire, as shape; to permit
to one's self; to indulge or engage in; to yield to;
to have or feel; to enjoy or experience, as rest,
revenge, delight, shame; to form and adopt, as a
resolution; -- used in general senses, limited by a
following complement, in many idiomatic phrases; as,
to take a resolution; I take the liberty to say.
(h) To lead; to conduct; as, to take a child to church.
(i) To carry; to convey; to deliver to another; to hand
over; as, he took the book to the bindery; he took a
dictionary with him.
He took me certain gold, I wot it well.
(k) To remove; to withdraw; to deduct; -- with from; as,
to take the breath from one; to take two from four.
2. In a somewhat passive sense, to receive; to bear; to
endure; to acknowledge; to accept. Specifically:
(a) To accept, as something offered; to receive; not to
refuse or reject; to admit.
Ye shall take no satisfaction for the life of a
murderer. --Num. xxxv.
Let not a widow be taken into the number under
threescore. --1 Tim. v.
(b) To receive as something to be eaten or drunk; to
partake of; to swallow; as, to take food or wine.
(c) Not to refuse or balk at; to undertake readily; to
clear; as, to take a hedge or fence.
(d) To bear without ill humor or resentment; to submit to;
to tolerate; to endure; as, to take a joke; he will
take an affront from no man.
(e) To admit, as, something presented to the mind; not to
dispute; to allow; to accept; to receive in thought;
to entertain in opinion; to understand; to interpret;
to regard or look upon; to consider; to suppose; as,
to take a thing for granted; this I take to be man's
motive; to take men for spies.
You take me right. --Bacon.
Charity, taken in its largest extent, is nothing
else but the science love of God and our
[He] took that for virtue and affection which
was nothing but vice in a disguise. --South.
You'd doubt his sex, and take him for a girl.
(f) To accept the word or offer of; to receive and accept;
to bear; to submit to; to enter into agreement with;
-- used in general senses; as, to take a form or
I take thee at thy word. --Rowe.
Yet thy moist clay is pliant to command; . . .
Not take the mold. --Dryden.
3. To make a picture, photograph, or the like, of; as, to
take a group or a scene. [Colloq.]
[Webster 1913 Suppl.]
4. To give or deliver (a blow to); to strike; hit; as, he
took me in the face; he took me a blow on the head. [Obs.
exc. Slang or Dial.]
[Webster 1913 Suppl.]
To be taken aback, To take advantage of, To take air,
etc. See under Aback, Advantage, etc.
To take aim, to direct the eye or weapon; to aim.
To take along, to carry, lead, or convey.
To take arms, to commence war or hostilities.
To take away, to carry off; to remove; to cause deprivation
of; to do away with; as, a bill for taking away the votes
of bishops. "By your own law, I take your life away."
To take breath, to stop, as from labor, in order to breathe
or rest; to recruit or refresh one's self.
To take care, to exercise care or vigilance; to be
solicitous. "Doth God take care for oxen?" --1 Cor. ix. 9.
To take care of, to have the charge or care of; to care
for; to superintend or oversee.
To take down.
(a) To reduce; to bring down, as from a high, or higher,
place; as, to take down a book; hence, to bring lower;
to depress; to abase or humble; as, to take down
pride, or the proud. "I never attempted to be impudent
yet, that I was not taken down." --Goldsmith.
(b) To swallow; as, to take down a potion.
(c) To pull down; to pull to pieces; as, to take down a
house or a scaffold.
(d) To record; to write down; as, to take down a man's
words at the time he utters them.
To take effect, To take fire. See under Effect, and
To take ground to the right or To take ground to the left
(Mil.), to extend the line to the right or left; to move,
as troops, to the right or left.
To take heart, to gain confidence or courage; to be
To take heed, to be careful or cautious. "Take heed what
doom against yourself you give." --Dryden.
To take heed to, to attend with care, as, take heed to thy
To take hold of, to seize; to fix on.
To take horse, to mount and ride a horse.
To take in.
(a) To inclose; to fence.
(b) To encompass or embrace; to comprise; to comprehend.
(c) To draw into a smaller compass; to contract; to brail
or furl; as, to take in sail.
(d) To cheat; to circumvent; to gull; to deceive.
(e) To admit; to receive; as, a leaky vessel will take in
(f) To win by conquest. [Obs.]
For now Troy's broad-wayed town
He shall take in. --Chapman.
(g) To receive into the mind or understanding. "Some
bright genius can take in a long train of
propositions." --I. Watts.
(h) To receive regularly, as a periodical work or
newspaper; to take. [Eng.]
To take in hand. See under Hand.
To take in vain, to employ or utter as in an oath. "Thou
shalt not take the name of the Lord thy God in vain."
--Ex. xx. 7.
To take issue. See under Issue.
To take leave. See Leave, n., 2.
To take a newspaper, magazine, or the like, to receive it
regularly, as on paying the price of subscription.
To take notice, to observe, or to observe with particular
To take notice of. See under Notice.
To take oath, to swear with solemnity, or in a judicial
To take on, to assume; to take upon one's self; as, to take
on a character or responsibility.
To take one's own course, to act one's pleasure; to pursue
the measures of one's own choice.
To take order for. See under Order.
To take order with, to check; to hinder; to repress. [Obs.]
To take orders.
(a) To receive directions or commands.
(b) (Eccl.) To enter some grade of the ministry. See
Order, n., 10.
To take out.
(a) To remove from within a place; to separate; to deduct.
(b) To draw out; to remove; to clear or cleanse from; as,
to take out a stain or spot from cloth.
(c) To produce for one's self; as, to take out a patent.
To take up.
(a) To lift; to raise. --Hood.
(b) To buy or borrow; as, to take up goods to a large
amount; to take up money at the bank.
(c) To begin; as, to take up a lamentation. --Ezek. xix.
(d) To gather together; to bind up; to fasten or to
replace; as, to take up raveled stitches; specifically
(Surg.), to fasten with a ligature.
(e) To engross; to employ; to occupy or fill; as, to take
up the time; to take up a great deal of room.
(f) To take permanently. "Arnobius asserts that men of the
finest parts . . . took up their rest in the Christian
(g) To seize; to catch; to arrest; as, to take up a thief;
to take up vagabonds.
(h) To admit; to believe; to receive. [Obs.]
The ancients took up experiments upon credit.
(i) To answer by reproof; to reprimand; to berate.
One of his relations took him up roundly.
(k) To begin where another left off; to keep up in
continuous succession; to take up (a topic, an
Soon as the evening shades prevail,
The moon takes up the wondrous tale. --Addison.
(l) To assume; to adopt as one's own; to carry on or
manage; as, to take up the quarrels of our neighbors;
to take up current opinions. "They take up our old
trade of conquering." --Dryden.
(m) To comprise; to include. "The noble poem of Palemon
and Arcite . . . takes up seven years." --Dryden.
(n) To receive, accept, or adopt for the purpose of
assisting; to espouse the cause of; to favor. --Ps.
(o) To collect; to exact, as a tax; to levy; as, to take
up a contribution. "Take up commodities upon our
(p) To pay and receive; as, to take up a note at the bank.
(q) (Mach.) To remove, as by an adjustment of parts; as,
to take up lost motion, as in a bearing; also, to make
tight, as by winding, or drawing; as, to take up slack
thread in sewing.
(r) To make up; to compose; to settle; as, to take up a
quarrel. [Obs.] --Shak. -- (s) To accept from someone,
as a wager or a challenge; as, J. took M. up on his
To take up arms. Same as To take arms, above.
To take upon one's self.
(a) To assume; to undertake; as, he takes upon himself to
assert that the fact is capable of proof.
(b) To appropriate to one's self; to allow to be imputed
to, or inflicted upon, one's self; as, to take upon
one's self a punishment.
To take up the gauntlet. See under Gauntlet.