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American Dictionary of the English Language

Webster's Dictionary 1828

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Base


BASE, adjective

1. Low in place. obsolete

2. Mean; vile; worthless; that is, low in value or estimation; used of things.

3. Of low station; of mean account; without rank, dignity or estimation among men; used of persons.

The base shall behave proudly against the honorable. Isaiah 3:5.

4. Of mean spirit; disingenuous; illiberal; low; without dignity of sentiment; as a base and abject multitude.

5. Of little comparative value; applied to metals, and perhaps to all metals, except gold and silver.

6. Deep; grave; applied to sounds; as the base sounds of a viol.

7. Of illegitimate birth; born out of wedlock.

8. Not held by honorable tenure. A base estate is an estate held by services not honorable, not in capite, or by villenage. Such a tenure is called base or low, and the tenant, a base tenant. So writers on the laws of England use the terms, a base fee, a base court.

Such a tenure is called base or low, and the tenant, a base tenant. So writers on the laws of England use the terms, a base fee, a base court.

BASE, noun [Latin basis; that which is set, the foundation or bottom.]

1. The bottom of any thing, considered as its support or the part of a thing on which it stands or rests; as the base of a column, the pedestal of a statue, the foundation of a house, etc.

In architecture, the base of a pillar properly is that part which is between the top of a pedestal and the bottom of the shaft; but when there is no pedestal, it is the part between the bottom of the column and the plinth. Usually it consists of certain spires or circles. The pedestal also has its base

2. In fortification, the exterior side of the polygon, or that imaginary line which is drawn from the flanked angle of a bastion to the angle opposite to it.

3. In gunnery, the least sort of ordnance, the diameter of whose bore is l 1/4 inch.

4. The part of any ornament which hangs down, as housings.

5. The broad part of any thing, as the bottom of a cone.

6. In old authors, stockings; armor for the legs.

7. The place from which racers or tilters start; the bottom of the field; the carcer or starting post.

8. The lowest or gravest part in music; improperly written bass.

9. A rustic play, called also bays, or prison bars.

10. In geometry, the lowest side of the perimeter of a figure. Any side of a triangle may be called its base but this term most properly belongs to the side which is parallel to the horizon. In rectangled triangles, the base properly, is the side opposite to the right angle. The base of a solid figure is that on which it stands. The base of a conic section is a right line in the hyperbola and parabola, arising from the common intersection of the secant plane and the base of the cone.

11. In chimistry, any body which is dissolved by another body, which it receives and fixes. Thus any alkaline, earthy or metallic substance, combining with an acid, forms a compound or neutral salt, of which it is the base Such salts are called salts with alkaline, earthy or metallic bases.

12. Thorough base in music, is the part performed with base viols or theorbos, while the voices sing and other instruments perform their parts, or during the intervals when the other parts stop. It is distinguished by figures over the notes.

Counter base is a second or double base when there are several in the same concert.

BASE, verb transitive To embase; to reduce the value by the admixture of meaner metals. [Little used.]

2. To found; to lay the base or foundation.

To base and build the commonwealth of man.