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

View Scan · View Transcription · from page 1602

View Scan · View Transcription · from page 1602

Pun. n.s. [I know not whence this word is to be deduced: to pun, is to grind or beat with a pestle; can pun mean an empty sound, like that of a mortar beaten, as clench, the old word for pun seems only a corruption of clink?] An equivocation; a quibble; an expression where a word has at once different meanings.

It is not the word, but the figure that appears on the medal: cuniculus may stand for a rabbit or a mine, but the picture of a rabbit is not the picture of a mine: a pun can be no more engraven, than it can be translated. Addison.

But fill their purse, our poet's work is done,
Alike to them by pathos, or by pun.

Sources: Addison, Joseph (408) · Pope, Alexander (393)

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Cite this page: Johnson, Samuel. "Pun (noun)." A Dictionary of the English Language: A Digital Edition of the 1755 Classic by Samuel Johnson. Edited by Brandi Besalke. Last modified: November 12, 2011. https://johnsonsdictionaryonline.com/pun-noun/.

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