A Dictionary of the English Language
                        A Digital Edition of the 1755 Classic by Samuel Johnson
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E'rrand. n.s. [æꞃnð, Saxon; arend, Danish.] A message; something to be told or done by a messenger; a mandate; a commission. It is generally used now only in familiar language.

Servants being commanded to go, shall stand still, 'till they have their errand warranted unto them. Hooker, b. ii. s. 8.

But hast thou done thy errand to Baptista?
— I told him that your father was in Venice.

A quean! have I not forbid her my house? She comes of errands, does she? Shakespeare's Merry Wives of Windsor.

When he came, behold the captains of the host were sitting, and he said, I have an errand to thee, O captain. 2 Kings ix. 5.

                From them I go
This uncouth errand sole.
Milton's Paradise Lost, b. ii.

                                His eyes,
That run through all the heav'ns, or down to th' earth,
Bear his swift errands, over moist and dry,
O'er sea and land.
Milton's Paradise Lost, b. iii. l. 652.

        Well thou do'st to hide from common sight
Thy close intrigues, too bad to bear the light;
Nor doubt I, but the silver-footed dame,
Tripping from sea, on such an errand came.
Dryd. Homer.

Sources: The Bible - 2. Kings (12) · Dryden, John (788) · Hooker, Richard (175) · Shakespeare's Merry Wives of Windsor (95) · Milton, John (449) · Shakespeare's Taming of the Shrew (71)

Attributes: Danish (9) · Noun Substantive (1269) · Saxon (215)

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Cite this page: Johnson, Samuel. "Errand." A Dictionary of the English Language: A Digital Edition of the 1755 Classic by Samuel Johnson. Edited by Brandi Besalke. Last modified: February 1, 2014. https://johnsonsdictionaryonline.com/errand/.

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