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American Dictionary of the English Language

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Fret


FRET, verb transitive [Latin rodo, rosi, rado, to scrape. To fret or gnaw gives the sense of unevenness, roughness, in substances; the like appearance is given to fluids by agitation.]

1. To rub; to wear away a substance by friction; as, to fret cloth; to fret a piece of gold or other metal.

2. To corrode; to gnaw; to ear away; as, a worm frets the planks of a ship.

3. To impair; to wear away.

By starts, his fretted fortunes give him hope and fear.

4. To form into raised work.

5. To variegate; to diversify.

Yon gray lines that fret the clouds are messengers of day.

6. To agitate violently.

7. To agitate; to disturb; to make rough; to cause to ripple; as, to fret the surface of water.

8. To tease; to irritate; to vex; to make angry.

FRET not thyself because of evil doers. Psalms 37:1.

9. To wear away; to chafe; to gall. Let not a saddle or harness fret the skin of your horse.

FRET, verb intransitive

1. To be worn away; to be corroded. Any substance will in time fret away by friction.

2. To eat or wear in; to make way of attrition or corrosion.

Many wheels arose, and fretted one into another with great excoriation.

3. To be agitated; to be in violent commotion; as the rancor that frets in the malignant breast.

4. To be vexed; to be chafed or irritated; to be angry; to utter peevish expressions.

He frets, he fumes, he stares, he stamps the ground.

FRET, noun

1. The agitation of the surface of a fluid by fermentation or other cause; a rippling on the surface of water; small undulations continually repeated.

2. Work raised in protuberances; or a kind of knot consisting of two lists or small fillets interlaced, used as an ornament in architecture.

3. Agitation of mind; commotion of temper; irritation; as, he keeps his mind in a continual fret

Yet then did Dennis rave in furious fret

4. A short piece of wire fixed on the fingerboard of a guitar, etc., which being pressed against the strings varies the tone.

5. In heraldry, a bearing composed of bars crossed and interlaced.

FRET, verb transitive To furnish with frets, as an instrument of music.

FRET, noun [Latin fretum.] A frith, which see.