A Dictionary of the English Language
                        A Digital Edition of the 1755 Classic by Samuel Johnson
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Abstract (adjective)

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View Scan · View Transcription · from page 64

A'bstract. adj. [abstractus, Lat. See the verb To ABSTRACT.]

  1. Separated from something else, generally used with relation to mental perceptions; as, abstract mathematics, abstract terms, in opposition to concrete.

    Mathematics, in its latitude, is usually divided into pure and mixed. And though the pure do handle only abstract quantity in general, as geometry, arithmetic; yet that which is mixed, doth consider the quantity of some particular determinate subject. So astronomy handles the quantity of heavenly motions, music of sounds, and mechanics of weights and powers. Wilkin's Mathematical Magick.

    Abstract terms signify the mode or quality of a being, without any regard to the subject in which it is; as, whiteness, roundness, length, breadth, wisdom, mortality, life, death. Watt's Logick.

  2. With the particle from.

    Another fruit from the considering things in themselves, abstract from our opinions and other mens notions and discourses on them, will be, that each man will pursue his thoughts in that method, which will be most agreeable to the nature of the thing, and to his apprehension of what it suggests to him. Locke.

Sources: Locke, John (269) · Watts, Isaac (117) · Wilkins, John (32)

Attributes: Adjective (426) · Latin (690)

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Cite this page: Johnson, Samuel. "Abstract (adjective)." A Dictionary of the English Language: A Digital Edition of the 1755 Classic by Samuel Johnson. Edited by Brandi Besalke. Last modified: January 30, 2014. http://johnsonsdictionaryonline.com/?p=1124.


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