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American Dictionary of the English Language

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Present


PRES'ENT, adjective s as z. [Latin proesens; proe and sum, esse, to be.]

1. Being in a certain place; opposed to absent.

2. Being before the face or near; being in company. Inquire of some of the gentlemen present

These things have I spoken unto you, being yet present with you. John 14:25.

3. Being now in view or under consideration. In the present instance, facts will not warrant the conclusion. The present question must be decided on different principles.

4. Now existing, or being at this time; not past or future; as the present session of congress. The court is in session at the present time. We say, a present good, the present year or age.

5. Ready at hand; quick in emergency; as present wit.

'Tis a high point of philosophy and virtue for a man to be present to himself.

6. Favorably attentive; not heedless; propitious.

Nor could I hope in any place but there

To find a god so present to my prayer.

7. Not absent of mind; not abstracted; attentive.

The present an elliptical expression for the present time.

At present elliptically for, at the present time.

Present tense, in grammar, the tense or form of a verb which expresses action or being in the present time, as I am writing; or something that exists at all times, as virtue is always to be preferred to vice; or it expresses habits or general truths, as plants spring from the earth; fishes swim; reptiles creep; birds fly; some animals subsist on herbage, others are carnivorous.

PRES'ENT, noun That which is presented or given; a gift; a donative; something given or offered to another gratuitously; a word of general application. Genesis 32:13.

Presents' in the plural, is used in law for a deed of conveyance, a lease, letter of attorney or other writing; as in the phrase, 'Know all men by these presents, ' that is, by the writing itself, per presentes. In this sense, it is rarely used in the singular.

PRESENT', verb transitive [Low Latin proesento; Latin proesens; proe, before, and sum, esse, to be.]

1. To set, place or introduce into the presence or before the face of a superior, as to present an envoy to the king; and with the reciprocal pronoun, to come into the presence of a superior.

Now there was a day when the sons of God came to present themselves before the Lord. Job 1:6.

2. To exhibit to view or notice. The top of Mount Holyoke, in Hampshire county, in Massachusetts, presents one of the finest prospects in America.

3. To offer; to exhibit.

O hear what to my mind first thoughts present

He is ever ready to present to us the thoughts or observations of others.

4. To give; to offer gratuitously for reception. The first President of the American Bible Society, presented to that institution ten thousand dollars.

5. To put into the hands of another in ceremony.

So ladies in romance assist their knight,

Present the spear, and arm him for the fight.

6. To favor with a gift; as, we present a man with a suit of clothes. Formerly the phrase was, to present a person.

Octavia presented the poet, for his admirable elegy on her son Marcellus.

[This use is obsolete.]

7. To nominate to an ecclesiastical benefice; to offer to the bishop or ordinary as a candidate for institution.

The patron of a church may present his clerk to a parsonage or vicarage; that is, may offer him to the bishop of the diocese to be instituted.

8. To offer.

He--presented battle to the French navy, which was refused.

9. To lay before a public body for consideration, as before a legislature, a court of judicature, a corporation, etc.; as, to present a memorial, petition, remonstrance or indictment.

10. To lay before a court of judicature as an object of inquiry; to give notice officially of a crime or offense. It is the duty of grand juries to present all breaches of law within their knowledge. In America, grand juries present whatever they think to be public injuries, by notifying them to the public with their censure.

11. To point a weapon, particularly some species of fire-arms; as, to present a musket to the breast of another; in manual exercise, to present arms.

12. To indict; a customary use of the word in the United Stats.