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

View Scan · View Transcription · from page 2260

View Scan · View Transcription · from page 2260

Well. n.s. [welle, wœll, Saxon.]

  1. A spring; a fountain; a source.

    Begin then, sisters of the sacred well,
    That from beneath the seat of Jove doth spring.

    As the root and branch are but one tree,
    And well and stream do but one river make;
    So if the root and well corrupted be,
    The stream and branch the same corruption take.

  2. A deep narrow pit of water.

    The muscles are so many well-buckets: when one of them acts and draws, 'tis necessary that the other must obey. Dryden.

  3. The cavity in which stairs are placed.

    Hollow newelled stairs are made about a square hollow newel: suppose the well-hole to be eleven foot long, and six foot wide, and we would bring up a pair of stairs from the first floor eleven foot high, it being intended a sky-light shall fall through the hollow newel. Moxon's Mech. Exer.

Sources: Davies, John (45) · Dryden, John (788) · Milton, John (449) · Moxon, Joseph (21)

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Cite this page: Johnson, Samuel. "Well (noun)." A Dictionary of the English Language: A Digital Edition of the 1755 Classic by Samuel Johnson. Edited by Brandi Besalke. Last modified: August 31, 2011. https://johnsonsdictionaryonline.com/well-noun/.

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