A Dictionary of the English Language
                        A Digital Edition of the 1755 Classic by Samuel Johnson
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Blast (noun)

View Scan · View Transcription · from page 252

View Scan · View Transcription · from page 252

Blast. n.s. [from blæꞅꞇ, Saxon; blasen, Germ. to blow.]

  1. A gust, or puff of wind.

    They that stand high, have many blasts to shake them;
    And, if they fall, they dash themselves to pieces.
    Shakesp. Richard III.

                                Welcome, then,
    Thou unsubstantial air, that I embrace;
    The wretch that thou hast blown unto the worst,
    Owes nothing to thy blasts.
    Shakesp. King Lear.

    Perhaps thy fortune doth controul the winds,
    Doth loose or bind their blasts in secret cave.
    Fairfax, b. i.

    Three ships were hurry'd by the southern blast,
    And on the secret shelves with fury cast.
    Dryden's Æneid.

  2. The sound made by blowing any instrument of wind musick.

    In peace there's nothing so becomes a man,
    As modest stilness and humility;
    But when the blast of war blows in our ears,
    Then imitate the action of the tyger.
    Shakesp. Henry V.

    He blew his trumpet — the angelick blast
    Fill'd all the regions.
    Milt. Par. Lost, b. xi. l. 76.

    The Veline fountains, and sulphureous Nar,
    Shake at the baleful blast, the signal of the war.
    Dryden's Æn.

    Whether there be two different goddesses called Fame, or one goddess sounding two different trumpets, it is certain, villainy has as good a title to a blast from the proper trumpet, as virtue has from the former. Swift.

  3. The stroke of a malignant planet; the infection of any thing pestilential.

    By the blast of God they perish. Job, iv. 9.

Sources: Dryden, John (788) · Fairfax, Edward (30) · Shakespeare's Henry V (66) · The Bible - Job (27) · Shakespeare's King Lear (144) · Milton, John (449) · Shakespeare's Richard III (63) · Swift, Jonathan (306)

Attributes: German (30) · Noun Substantive (1269) · Saxon (215)

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Cite this page: Johnson, Samuel. "Blast (noun)." A Dictionary of the English Language: A Digital Edition of the 1755 Classic by Samuel Johnson. Edited by Brandi Besalke. Last modified: April 19, 2014. http://johnsonsdictionaryonline.com/?p=19926.


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