A Dictionary of the English Language
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Address (verb)

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To Addre'ss. v.a. [addresser, Fr. from dereçar, Span. from dirigo, directum, Lat.]

  1. To prepare one's self to enter upon any action; as, he addressed himself to the work.

    It lifted up its head, and did address
    Itself to motion, like as it would speak.
    Shakesp. Hamlet.

    With him the Palmer eke, in habit sad,
    Himself addrest to that adventure hard;
    So to the river's side they both together far'd.
    Fairy Q. b. ii.

    Then Turnus, from his chariot leaping light,
    Address'd himself on foot to single fight.
    Dryden's Æneid.

  2. To get ready; to put in a state for immediate use.

    By this means they fell directly on the English battle; whereupon the earl of Warwick addressed his men to take the flank. Sir J. Hayward.

    Duke Frederick hearing, how that every day
    Men of great worth resorted to this forest,
    Address'd a mighty power, which were on foot,
    In his own conduct purposely to take
    His brother here.
    Shakespeare, As you like it.

    To-night in Harfleur we wil be your guest,
    To-morrow for the march we are addrest.
    Shak. Henry V.

  3. To apply to another by words, with various forms of construction.

  4. Sometimes without a preposition.

    Are not your orders to address the senate? Addison's Cato.

  5. Sometimes with to.

    Addressing to Pollio, his great patron, and himself no vulgar poet, he no longer could restrain the freedom of his spirit, but began to assert his native character, which is sublimity. Dryden's Dedication of Virgil's Past.

    Among the croud, but far above the rest,
    Young Turnus to the beauteous maid addrest.
    Dryd. Æneid.

  6. Sometimes with the reciprocal pronoun; as, he addressed himself to the general.

  7. Sometimes with the accusative of the matter of the address, which may be the nominative to the passive.

    The young hero had addressed his prayers to him for his assistance. Dryd. Æneid, Dedication.

    The prince himself, with awful dread possess'd,
    His vows to great Apollo thus addrest.
    Dryden, Æneid vi.

    His suit was common; but, above the rest,
    To both the brother-princes thus addrest.
    Dryden's Fables.

  8. To address, is to apply to the king in form.

    The representatives of the nation in parliament, and the privy-council, address'd the king to have it recalled. Swift.

Sources: Addison, Joseph (408) · Shakespeare's As You Like It (40) · Dryden, John (788) · Shakespeare's Hamlet (60) · Hayward, John (42) · Shakespeare's Henry V (66) · Spenser, Edmund (254) · Swift, Jonathan (306)

Attributes: French (385) · Latin (690) · Spanish (12) · Verb Active (289)

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Cite this page: Johnson, Samuel. "Address (verb)." A Dictionary of the English Language: A Digital Edition of the 1755 Classic by Samuel Johnson. Edited by Brandi Besalke. Last modified: January 15, 2014. http://johnsonsdictionaryonline.com/?p=13441.


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