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This glossary offers an overview of some of Spenser's hard language. It complements the local glosses provided throughout the edition, by gathering and explaining in one place those unfamiliar words that are especially important in Spenser's diction, common in his usage, or both. The glosses given here cover most of the senses in which these words are used in Spenser's works; in unusual or special cases, a local gloss in our edition will draw out the sense and nuance not attested here.

The glossary gives some indication of the range of orthographical variation evident in (our edition of) Spenser's works for each of the words it includes. These variant forms are given, where appropriate, in [square brackets]. The presentation of variants is not exhaustive. For example, it does not include preterite or progressive forms (for verbs) or plural forms (for nouns) where they are formed in the normal way; however, it frequently does include inflected forms of various kinds (e.g. past participle adjectives for verbs, comparative or superlative forms for adjectives). Our selection of variant forms focuses on those that might puzzle or mislead a modern reader. Variants are thus included in order to clarify connections between forms, and especially inflected forms, that due to compositorial vagaries and other factors might otherwise seem semantically distinct. The range of variants also throws up possible confusions (e.g. between ‘ydrad’ and ‘adrad’ under the lemma ‘dread’), to which the reader may want to be attentive.

Closely connected lemmata (e.g. adjectives formed from nouns, adverbs formed from adjectives) have generally been grouped, except in cases where both terms are substantially attested and form part of the 'student core' glossary. Connected but distinct lemmata have been cross-referenced. Where confusions seem possible or probable, they have been noted.

‘†’ marks words to which readers might pay special attention.

v. trans. reduce, lower, lessen, mollify; (of a decree, writ, etc.)to make void or invalid; intr. to diminish or grow smaller; to lapse or expire.
abray [abrade, abraid, abrayd]
v. intr. to start suddenly from sleep or a swoon trans. to wake from sleep or a swoon. Spenser uses abraid in all its spellings as both a present- and a past-tense verb.
abye [abie, aby]
v. trans. to buy,purchase, to ransom; to suffer or atone for; intr. to suffer or pay a penalty; to abide, endure.
accompt [accoumpt, account]
v. trans. to reckon, present a reckoning; to consider or regard (someone or something) as (something); to narrate, relate; n. a reckoning or accounting, as of one's wealth, assets, or conduct.
acquit [acquite, acquitt, acquight, acquyted]
v. trans. to redeem, save, discharge, set free; refl. to discharge, clear of debt or blame; to conduct or behave (oneself). Cf. quit.
adj. See dread.
aduenture [aduenter, auentred, auentring]
v. trans. to venture, take a risk or chance, try (one's luck), hazard or dare. n. chance, fortune, accident; a daring undertaking, feat, or exploit.
by aduenture
by chance.
aduise [aduice, aduyce, aduize, auise, auize, auyse]
v. trans. to look at, to see; refl. or intr. to reflect, deliberate, or consider; in pass. to consider or ponder (something); to take counsel (with others), to offer counsel or guidance.
aduizement [aduisement, advisement)
n. advice, counsel; consideration, deliberation.
affray [affraye, affrayd, affraid, afrayd, afrayde, afraid, afraide, effraide]
v. trans. to attack, assault; terrify, frighten. n. fear, terror; an attack; a tumult or commotion.
affy [affide, affyde]
v. trans. to betroth.
affiance [affiaunced]
n. trust, allegiance, faith. v trans. to betroth.
v. to please, gratify.
al [all]
conj. (with subjunctive verb) albeit, although. Cf. albe.
albe [albee]
var. albeit, albeeit, albeyt conj. albeit, although.
algates [algate, allgates]
adv. nevertheless; altogether, entirely, wholly; always, ever.
adv. also.
amain [amaine, amayne]
adv. with all one's strength, violently, vehemently; at full speed.
v. trans. terrify, dismay, daunt; subdue. v. intr. to match or couple, as a companion or paramour.
anon [anone]
adv. straightaway, immediately; soon, in a short time.
apay [apaid, apayd, ypaid]
v. trans. repay, requite, satisfy.
appall [apall]
v. intr. to grow pale; to become faint or weak; trans. to make pale, to cause (something or someone) to weaken; to dismay or terrify (someone).
approue [approu'd, approud, approuen]
v. trans. to make good, prove; to confirm; to show or demonstrate (something); to test or find by experience.
approuaunce [approuance, approvance, approvaunce)
n. approval; approof, trial or demonstration.
aread [areed, arede, areedes, ared, aredd]
n. advice, counsel, discourse. v. trans. advise, consider, counsel; utter, tell, interpret; decide, adjudge.
array [aray, araye, arraid, arayd, arayed, araied, arrayd, arayes]
v. trans. make ready, prepare, arrange; to dress, attire; to afflict, disfigure, defile. n. military order or arrangement, preparation; outfit or dress.
assay [assaies, assayes, assayd, assaid]
v. trans. test, put to proof, employ (by way of trial); afflict, assault, assail; attempt. n. (attested) value, quality; tribulation, affliction; attempt or trial; attack.
assoile [assoyle, assoyld]
v. trans. to forgive or absolve; to discharge or free (someone) of something (e.g. a vow, a sin, etc.); to purge oneself from, to atone for (something); to aquit or cancel (something), to discharge or dispel (something).
astonied [aston'd, astound, astoned, stonied, astonish, stonisht]
adj. astonished, stunned.
attach [attacht]
v. trans. arrest, seize.
attonce [atonce, attons]
adv. once and for all, in a body or together; at the same time, instantly.
auaile [auale, auayl, auayld, auayle]
v. intr. to be of value or benefit; to descend or dismount; to sink or flow, drop down. n. benefit, profit.
awful [awfull]
adj. full of awe, causing fear or dread; terror-stricken.
ay, aye [aie]
adv. ever, always.
band [bond]
n. a string or strap by which something is bound; a tie or bond; a shackle, fetter, or restraint; a ribbon or decorative strap or tie; hence, an agreement or bond by which two or more people are (legally, in honour, or otherwise) united; security or pledge, contract or covenant; a strip or piece of cloth in which a baby is wrapped and clothed; crew, company, or train; an organised company of soldiers or brigands, robbers, etc. v. intr. to unite or gather into a company or troop.
ppl. adj. See dight.
behight [behote, behot]
v. trans. and ppl. adj. vow, promise; grant; command, bid; call, name. Cf. hight.
beliue [biliue, bliue, byliue, by liue]
adv. at once, forthwith, immediately; quickly. adj. eager, glad.
v. trans. to incline or purpose (to do something), esp. in pass. ; to aim or direct (something, e.g. a lance); refl. to direct oneself (to do something).
beseeme [beseme]
v. intr. to seem, appear; become, befit; absol. to be fitting or becoming.
bespeak [bespake, bespoke]
v. intr. say, speak; trans. speak to (someone)
betide [betyde, betyded, betid, betidd, betight]
v. intr. happen, befall; ppl. adj. befallen.
bewray [bewrayd, bewrayde, bewraid]
v. trans. discover, reveal; declare, tell.
blaze [blasing]
v. trans. to proclaim or pronounce; to blazon, or describe by heraldic conventions; to depict, to set out pictorially.
v. trans. to dazzle or blind; to mix, mingle; hence, to muddy, blot, or spoil.
blent or yblent
ppl. adj. blinded; muddied, sullied, spoiled.
blesse [blest, blis, bliss, blysse, blist]
v. trans. to consecrate or sanctify; to protect or guard, as by a charm or prayer; to praise or adore, as with gratitude; to confer fortune or happiness upon, by ritual or prayer; to brandish (a weapon); to wave or brandish around (with a weapon).
boot [bootes]
v. to profit or avail, to be of use or value.
bootlesse [bootles]
adj. unavailing, unprofitable, useless.
brand [brond, brandes]
n. a log from the fire, a torch; a blade or sword.
brandiron [brondiron, brondyron, brond-yrons)
n. sword.
adj. flexible or yielding; submissive, compliant.
can [cane, canne]
v. aux. began, did.
careful [carefull]
adj. of persons or things, full of grief, care; anxious or troubled, full of concern. Cf. carelesse.
adj. free from care, untroubled; heedless (of something); not exercising due care, negligent.
carle [carl, carles]
n. a countryman, villein, or rustic; a low or rough fellow, churl.
cast [casten, castyng, kest]
v. trans. throw; intr. occas. refl. plan, resolve; set oneself upon some action, or to do something.
† caytiue [caitiue, caitiff]
n. slave or captive; wretch or miserable person; villain, base or mean person. adj. wretched, miserable; villainous, base.
adv. certainly, without doubt.
challenge [chalenge, chalengd, chaleng, challeng]
v. trans. to claim, to lay formal claim to; to demand; to defy to a fight or battle, to offer battle; to object legally or offer (something) as a legal exception.
cheare [chear, cheard, chearen, cheer, cheere]
n. expression, countenance; mood, state of mind; hospitable welcome, entertainment, provision. v. trans. to comfort, console; to encourage, animate, spur on.
cheualry [cheualree, cheualrye, cheualrie]
n. knighthood along with its codes and customs; bravery and skill in war; the feats or achievements of a knight.
cleepe [cleped, ycleped]
v. trans. call, name.
close [closd, closde]
adj. secret; near, snug, constrained. adv. (also closly, closely) secretly, privily.
colour [coulor, coulored, coulourd, coulours, colowrs, colourd, colowred, collour, colored, colourd]
n. appearance, semblance, esp. that used as a pretext for some action or judgment. v. trans. to dress or represent a statement or action in a false guise or light, esp. by presenting something bad or illicit as good and licit; to gloss or disguise a fault (with some fiction or lie).
compasse [compas, compassid, compast]
v. trans. devise, contrive (in a negative sense); to go around, encircle; to achieve or win (something); to attain or accomplish (some end or object). n. measure and order, moderation and proportion; circumference, sweep or arc; extent, reach; power, capacity.
con [cond kon kond, ycond]
v. trans. to know; to get to know or learn (e.g. by repetition or study).
con (one) thank
to thank or express thanks.
conge [congee, congé]
n. formal leave-taking, licence or authority to depart.
corage [courage]
n. the heart (Lat. cor) as seat of feeling or thought, hence spirit, mind, nature; spirit or vital energy, vigor of soul; confidence or conviction; bravery or valor.
corse [corps corpes, corpse]
n. body, corpse.
couch [coucht]
v. trans. lay or spread out, set or place; lower into place or level (e.g. a spear into its rest, ready for attack); to lay in concealment; to lie hidden or lurk.
count [coumpt, countyng]
v. trans. Cf. accompt.
couth [couthe]
v. pret. could, knew (how).
crime [cryme]
n. sin or sinfulness; an offence against another person or against some code or law.
darraine [darrayne, deraign]
v. trans. to prove or justify a claim by trial of battle; to engage in battle; array oneself or others for battle.
dart [darte, dartes]
n. a light spear or javelin; an arrow or other similar missile (e.g. a bolt] used in hunting or in war.
decay [decaie, decayed, decaid, decayd, decayes, decayse, decayeng]
v. intr. to deteriorate, diminish, fail; to decrease in number; to decline in fortune or prosperity; to ruin, rot, decompose. n. decline, diminishing, deterioration; rotting or ruin of a thing; decrease; a state of disintegration or ruin; destruction or death.
deeme [deem]
v. trans. to judge, pronounce judgment; to estimate or value; to distinguish or discriminate (between).
ppl. adj. judged, considered. Cf. misdeeme.
defy [defie, defye, defyes, defyest, defide, defied, defyde]
v. trans. to renounce faith to [someone, a god, etc.); to declare hostilities against; to challenge to combat; to resist or repudiate, to reject or despise.
defiaunce [defyaunce, defyance, defiance]
n. resistance, rejection, contempt; a renunciation of loyalty; a challenge to combat or battle.
descry [descrie, discry, descried, descryed, descride, descryde, discried]
v. trans. to reveal, make known, disclose; to perceive or espy, discover or make out by careful watch.
despite [despight, despighte, despights, despited]
n. contempt, scorn; anger, settled malice; an act showing contempt or malice, an outrage or injury. v. trans. to contemn, scorn; to spite, vex. Cf. dispiteous
despoile [despoild, despoyle, despouille, despoyled, despoyld, despoyling]
v. trans. to strip (e.g. of clothes, weapons, or ornaments); to plunder, rob; to injure or destroy. Cf. spoil.
deuise [deuice, deuisd, deuisde, deuize, deuizd, deuize, deuiz'd, deuyse, deuysd]
v. trans. to consider or plan, contrive or frame (something or some idea); to make up or invent; to design, depict (as a device, e.g. on a shield); v. intr. confer, converse or talk. n. invention or ingenuity; purpose, intention, or fancy; the faculty of contriving or making; a contrivance or invention, something made, esp. an artwork or performance, or an emblematic figure or design (e.g. a heraldic badge or cognisance); speech, conference, talk.
dight [dites]
v. trans. to make or do; to furnish or equip; to dress or adorn; to put on (armour or clothing); to prepare or ready (something); refl. to prepare or ready (oneself) (to do something), or to direct (oneself), to go. ppl. adj. dressed, decked, adorned, or arranged.
ppl. adj. furnished, dressed.
n. a stroke or blow (as with a sword); assault or attack; the mark or dent made by a blow or attack.
disease [diseasd]
n. uneasiness, discomfort; sickness or illness. v. trans. to trouble or molest, to disturb; to cause to become sick, to infect.
dismay [dismayde, dismayd dismaid, dismade, dismaied, dismaies]
v. trans. to daunt or overwhelm, to appal and confound; to defeat or overcome; intr. to lose heart, to quail or weaken n. >a state of utter discouragement, faint-heartedness, and confusion.
dispiteous [despiteous]
adj. full of despite, contemptuous; spiteful, pitiless.
adv. cruelly, pitilessly.
v. intr. to entertain (oneself), sport or play. n. diversion, amusement, entertainment; game, sport.
dispred [dispredd, dispredden, disprad, dispread]
v. trans. to spread, extend or expand; intr. spread (oneself, itself, etc.).
diuers, diuerse [dyuers, diuerst]
adj. differing in nature or character, unlike; sundry, various. v. intr. to turn in a different direction, head off.
diuersely [diverslie, diversly, diuerslie, diuersly, dyuersly]
adv. in a different way, variously, differently.
doen i.e. do,
v. inf.
doome [dome]
n. formal or legal judgement; personal judgment or opinion; fate, lot.
doughty [doughtie]
adj. valiant, stout, courageous (said of people, actions, and things connected with them).
dread [drede, dreed, dred, dredd]
v. trans. fear, be mortally afraid of; reverence, worship. n. mortal fear, profound awe; a person or thing to be feared or venerated; (by inversion) dreadfulness, terror. adj. feared greatly, terrible or awesome; revered.
dreaded, drad, or ydred (dreadded, ydreaded]
ppl. adj. feared, revered.
adrad [adredd, ydred, adred]
adj. full of dread, terrified.
dreary [drery, drerie, dreery, dreerie, drearie]
adj. gory, covered in blood; cruel or horrid; doleful, dismal, full of sadness and melancholy.
dreare [drere]
n. sadness, sorrow, gloom.
drearyhead [drerihed dryrihed, dreryhead, dreryhedd, drerihedd, drearihood]
n. sorrow; dismalness.
dreriment [dreariment, dreeriment]
n. gloom; suffering and balefulness; sorrowful lamentation.
earne [erne, yearne, earnd, yearne]
v. trans. and intr. to yearn, to long for; to deserve or purchase.
earst [erst]
adv. at first,originally; once, once upon a time, long ago; recently, lately.
at earst
instantly, right away.
eath [ethe]
adj. easy. adv. easily.
n. every one, all.
eft [efte]
adv. again; after, afterwards; then.
eftsoones [eftsones, eft soones, eftsoon, eftsoone]
adv. afterwards; forthwith, at once.
eke [eake, eek, eeke, eche]
v. to increase, add to; to prolong. adv. also, in addition.
eld [elde, old]
n. age, old age; antiquity.
embay [embayd, embayes]
v. trans. to bathe or drench; to steep, suffuse.
embrew [embrued, embrewd, imbrew, imbrue, imbrewd]
v. trans. to stain, defile; to steep, soak, or saturate (e.g. with blood); to infuse, perfuse.
empeach [impeach, impeche]
v. trans. to hinder, obstruct, or impede. n. an obstruction, hindrance.
ppl. adj. See pight.
emprise [emprize]
n. an enterprise or undertaking; martial prowess, chivalric daring.
ensample [ensaumple]
n. a paradigm or typical instance, a pattern, precedent, or model for imitation; a deterrent or cautionary punishment. v. trans. to illustrate, to model.
ensew [ensue, ensu'th, ensewen, ensewd, ensu'd]
v. trans. and intr. to follow, pursue; to come after, to succeed; to profess or pursue; to be consequent, to result.
enterprise [enterprize, enterpris, enterprice, enterpriz'd, enterprizd]
n. an undertaking or design, esp. one requiring courage and ambition; daring or courage. v. trans. to take in hand, attempt, venture upon; take in hand, conduct, guide.
entertaine [entertain, entertayne, enterteigne, enterteynd, intertainde, entertaind, entertaynd, entertayned]
v. trans. to sustain, support, maintain; to engage, occupy, treat; to receive, accommodate, and treat as a guest, to show hospitality, favour, or attention to; to admit, receive, accept (something); to admit into consideration; to encounter, meet with. n. entertainment, hospitality.
entertainment [entertainement, entertaynement, enterteinment, enterteynment]
n. maintenance, support, position; provision, support, wages; social behaviour, treatment of others; the reception of a guest, hospitality; hospitable provision, or provisions; amusement.
entreat [intreat, intreate, intrete)
v. trans. to treat, to handle, to deal with (someone or something); to occupy or busy oneself with or in; to speak or write of (something); to beg of plead for (something or someone); to implore, to pray.
enuy [enuie, enuye]
n. malice or enmity; bad feeling occasioned by consciousness of or preoccupation with someone else’s good fortune, happiness, or advantage. v. trans. to feel discontentment or hostility at someone else’s good fortune, happiness, or advantage; to desire someone else’s good fortune, happiness, or advantage; to harbor a grudge against (someone); to grudge (something) to (someone), to begrudge (something);
equall [equal]
adj. identical or exactly comparable in amount or quantity, in rank or degree; just, impartial, equitable (Lat. aequus). n. one who is identical to another in rank, standing, honour, etc.; a state of equality or perfect balance.
ere [eare]
prep. before. conj. before.
errant [erraunt]
adj. wandering or roaming (said freq. of knights errant); straying, roving, out of place; mistaken, dishonourable.
espy [espie, espye, espide, espied, espyed, espyde, aspide, aspyde]
v. trans. to perceive or see; to make out through watching or search; to catch sight of. Cf. spy.
n. condition, situation; honour, rank, dignity; grandeur, outward display of pomp and power; a class or rank of people (e.g. the mean or the middling estate], esp. as one among several classes or orders making up the body politic.
faine [fain, fayn, fayne, feyne, faygned, feign)
adj. glad, eager, well-disposed. adv. >willingly, with pleasure. v. to be glad or delighted; to desire, wish. Cf. feign.
fall [fal, fals, falne)
v. impers. to come as a lot or portion (to someone]; to appertain or belong (to someone]; to happen or occur, to come to pass.
v. intr. to journey or travel, to go; to do or "get on" (either well or poorly]; to be fed or to eat, feed. n. a journeying or departure, passage, voyage; food, supply of food, feeding or diet.
fay [faye)
n. a fairy. Cf. fay n. faith.
faytour [faitour, faytor, faytours)
n. a vagrant or villain, a cheat.
feign [faine, feyne, feining)
v. to forge, pretend, disguise, or dissemble; to counterfeit or simulate. Cf. misfeign.
adj. cruel, fierce, ruthless.
adv. cruelly, without remorse.
fere [feere)
n. a companion, partner, mate; spouse, husband or wife.
adj. foolish.
fone [foen)
i.e. foes.
v. trans. to kill or destroy; to undo, ruin.
fordonne (foredonne)
ppl. adj. overwhelmed, ruined, destroyed.
forthy [for thy)
conj. therefore.
n. forester, huntsman. Cf. foster v.
foster [fostred, yfostered)
v. to nourish or support, bring up, raise (a child].
frame [framd)
v. trans. and intr. to make, construct, generate; to contrive or design; to purpose or intend; to dispose (someone] to something, to direct (e.g. one's steps, as on a journey]. n. a supporting structure or framework, both conc. and fig.; structure, fabric; the manner in which a thing is made, its constitution or nature.
fray [frayd, frayde, frayes, fraies)
v. trans. to frighten. n. battle, combat.
fro [froe]
prep. from.
gage [gagd),
n. pawn, security (e.g. for a debt]; pledge or stake given in promise to do battle. v. trans. to pawn, or yield as hostage or security.
v. aux. See gin.
gay [gaye, gaie]
adj. bright or brilliant in colour or display; cheerful, sportive or debonaire.
geare [geere, gearre]
n. clothing, dress; armour and weaponry, riding tackle; gen. stuff, matter,trash, hence foul matter, pus.
gent and gentle [ientle]
adj. high-born, hence noble and courteous, graceful, virtuous.
gin [ginne, gynne, gynst, gan]
v. intr. to begin; pret. as aux. began, did. Cf. gin, n.
n. for "engine"; a scheme or trick, cunning; an instrument or machine used in torture.
n. neck or throat; the contents of the stomach. v. trans. to swallow up, consume greedily; to glut or stuff.
n. rank or estate (fr. "degree"); goodwill or favour, esp. in phrase in gree.
n. man or boy, a base fellow; esp. a servant or shepherd.
n. payment or reward.
guise [guyse, guize]
n. manner, custom or fashion; style (of dress, etc.), outward appearance; costume.
n. chance, fortune; (one's) chance, fortune, or lot; event, accident.
happy [happye, happie],
adj. lucky or fortunate, blest; content, joyful; of things, accidental, befalling by chance.
haply or happily [happly]
adv. by chance; by fortune or by misfortune.
hardyhed [hardy-hed, hardyhedde]
n. boldness, courage.
hardiment [hardyment]
n. courage, audacity.
pron. them. Cf. hem v.
hem [hemd]
v. trans. to decorate with a border; to border or encircle, to enclose.
hend [hent]
v. trans. take, grasp.
v. pret. took, seized, gripped.
hent in hand,
ppl. adj. phrase undertook, undertaken.
hest [heast, heastes]
n. command, injunction; law.
n. See hue.
hie [hye, hyde, hide]
v. intr. and refl. to hasten, go quickly.
† hight [height, hot, hote]
v. trans. and intr. to call or name; to be called or named; to command or enjoin; to name or designate; to mean or intend; to assign or consign. Cf. behight.
hire [hyre, hier, hyr'd]
n. reward, prize; recompense, desert. v. to engage or procure.
n. a formal or ritual acknowledgment of allegiance and loyalty.
hue [hew, hewe, hiew]
n. appearance, form; complexion; colour.
imp [impe, ymp, ympe, ympt]
n. scion, offspring, hence child. v. engraft or implant.
impart [empart]
v. trans. to give, share; to communicate; to divide or deal out
iollity [iolity, iollitee, iollitie]
n. mirth, exuberance; pleasure, esp. sexual pleasure, wantonness.
iolly [iollye, iollie]
adj. lively, fresh, cheerful; gallant, brave; handsome, agreeable, pleasant.
ioyance [ioyaunce]
n. rejoicing, delight; merry-making; enjoyment, esp. sexual enjoyment
ken [kend, kent, kond]
v. trans. to know, perceive, descry; to recognise.
kind [kinde, kynd, kynde]
n. native character, natural disposition; nature itself, the natural order; gender or sex; manner or fashion; class or group (of things, animals, etc.), hence, race, kind; clan or kin; any class, variety, or category of things.
kindly [kindely, kindelye, kindlie, kyndly, kyndlye]
adv. in accordance with nature or one's own nature, properly or fittingly; with sympathy and benevolence. adj. natural; innate, native, inherent; proper or suitable; having a good nature, kindhearted, genial or benevolent. Cf. kind.
leasing [lesings leasinges]
n. lying, a lie.
leman [lemman]
n. >a beloved, sweetheart; a paramour or mistress.
adj. compar. See liefe.
lewd [leawd, leud, leude]
adj. common, base; unlearned, foolish or ignorant; of people or their actions, wicked, unprincipled; vicious and luxuriant, unchaste.
lewdly [leudly]
adv. basely, viciously; foolishly, ignorantly; unchastely.
liefe [leefe, lief, liefe]
adj. beloved, dear; willing, ready; (quasi-n.) a beloved or dear friend, sweetheart. In compar.
leuer [liefer]
readier, rather. In superl.
liefest [lifest]
dearest, most beloved.
lin [linne]
v. intr. to cease, leave off (from something).
list [lyst, lust]
v. trans. in impersonal constr. with dat. to please (me, him, her, them, etc.); in personal constr. to desire, like.
lore [lorne]
ppl. adj. left, abandoned.
n. teaching, counsel.
losell [lozell, losel]
n. a worthless person, villain or scoundrel.
louely [louelie]
adj. loving, amorous; loveable; beautiful, pretty; nice. adv. lovingly.
lout [lowte]
v. intr. to bow or stoop; to offer obedience or reverence.
lowre [loure, lower, lowrd, lowring]
v. intr. to frown or scowl.
n. spouse, partner, or paramour.
n. companion, fellow, partner; lover, spouse. v. trans. See amate.
maugre [maulgre, mauger]
prep. and adv. notwithstanding, in spite of.
n. a payment or recompense; reward, prize.
adj. suitable, fit, proper.
menage [amenage, manage]
n. the control or direction of a person, animal, or thing, esp. a horse. v. trans. to control, to wield or direct.
ment [meynt]
ppl. adj. mixed or blended. (To be distinguished from the preterite form of 'mean', v. trans. intend, design.)
mickle [mickell, muchell]
adj. great or large; much. adv. to a great degree, greatly.
miscreant [miscreaunt]
n. faithless scoundrel, villain, or rebel.
n. faithlessness, villainy.
misdeeme [misdeemd, misdempt]
v. trans. and intr. to judge wrongly, to suppose mistakenly; to suspect or censure. Cf. deeme.
mister [myster]
quasi adj. kind or type of. Cf. mister v. intrans. impersonal to be necessary or needful.
v. intr. See ween.
mo [moe]
adj. compar. more (of quantity).
moniment [monument]
n. a tomb, building, or structure designed to commemorate a person or event; a written record or legal text; any memorial or evidence of the past; a sign or warning offered by a past calamity.
mortal [mortall]
adj. subject to death, hence, human; of a weapon, wound, illness, etc., causing death; of an enemy, implacable or deadly.
mote [mought]
v. aux. may; must. Cf. n'ote v. aux. neg.
n'ill [nill, ni'll]
v. aux. neg. will not. Cf. n’ould.
n'ote [no'te, note]
v. aux. neg. 'ne mote', i.e. may or must not; 'ne wote', i.e. knows not. Cf. mote, wit, wote.
n'ould [nould, no'uld]
v. aux. neg. would not. Cf. n’ill.
nathelesse [natheles, nath'les, nathlesse, nath'lesse]
adv. nevertheless, notwithstanding.
nathemore [nathemoe]
adv. never the more.
neg. not; neither; nor.
nill [n'ill, ni'll]
v. aux. neg See n’ill. Cf. n’ould.
nis [nys]
v. neg. is not.
adj. noxious, vexatious.
obeysaunce [obaysance obeisance obeisaunce, obeyssance]
n. formal homage or obedience; an act or gesture of homage or reverence.
pron. i.e. aught, anything, anything, whatever. adv. i.e. aught, to any extent, at all; possibly or by any chance.
paynim [painim, paynym]
adj. and n. pagan.
n. spoil, booty; property or possessions, stuff; lucre.
perdie [perdy, perdee]
int. and adv. "by god!"; indeed, certainly.
perforce [perforse]
adv. by force, by compulsion; necessarily, of necessity.
pight [ypight]
ppl. adj. pitched, put or set in place; fixed or fastened; set or decked about (as with armour or weapons).
v. pret. intr. to implant itself, be fixed; ppl. adj. set or fixed in place.
plain [playn plaind, playnd]
v. trans. and intr. to complain; to lament or bewail (something).
plaint [playnt]
n. a lament or complaint; a formal rehearsal of some injury or wrong suffered.
pleasaunce [pleasance, pleasauns, plesaunce]
n. courtesy or appeasement; enjoyment, delight; pleasantness, charm.
plight [plyght, yplight]
n. condition, esp. negative condition; situation, case; array or dress. v. to pledge. ppl. adj. pledged, sworn.
prick [prickt]
v. trans. and intr. to pierce or puncture slightly; to sting or grieve (someone, inwardly); to poke or thrust at; to stimulate or incite; to goad or spur on, to ride a horse.
priuy [preuie, priuie]
adj. of persons, intimate and familiar, or (with to) privately familiar with; of things, hidden or secret;
priuily [priuilie, preuelie, preuilie, priuely, prively]
adv. in secret, discreetly, craftily.
priuity [priuitie, priuitee]
n. a sacred mystery or truth; one's private thoughts or business; intimacy or private relation; a legal relation shared by parties in a contract or transaction.
in priuity
in private.
proofe [proof priefe, preife]
n. evidence attesting to a fact or truth; the demonstration or production of this evidence; the outcome or effect of an action, choice, etc.; knowledge or experience gained from the ‘assay’ of some action or event; ability to withstand assay, power, impenetrability.
proue [prieue, prooue, prooued, prou'd, prouen]
v. trans. and intr. to demonstrate or establish; to turn out to be (something); to put something to the test; to find out by experience, to undergo or suffer. Cf. approue.
prow [prowest]
adj. gallant, valiant. In superl.
adj. most valiant.
puissaunce [puissance]
n. power, force.
puissaunt [puissant]
adj. powerful, strong.
purpose [purpos, purposd, purpost, purpoze]
v. trans. and intr. to propose for consideration, to discourse or talk; to intend or determine. n. an intention or aim, an end; the subject or point of a discourse or conversation; a proposition or argument (esp. in a game of question and answer).
puruay [puruey puruayd, puruaid]
v. trans. to prepare or supply (someone with something); to equip or provide.
purueyaunce [purueyance purveyance]
n. preparation; provision or supply.
quit [quitt, quitten, quite, quight, quighte]
v. trans. to repay or avenge; to redeem or set free; to absolve or set a person free (from a charge or blame). Cf. acquit.
quod [qd quoth]
v. pret. said.
v. pret. reached, attained, took up. Cf. reach.
raunge [range, raungd]
v. trans. and intr. to rove or roam, to wander; to set or dispose in order, as in rows.
reach [reatch, reatche]
v. trans. to extend a hand to grasp or take, or to strike; to extend or offer (something); to direct or thrust (e.g. words, weapons); strike or smite; to take by reaching; to arrive at (a place) or attain to (a thing); to extend or offer (something) to someone, to give. Cf. raught.
read [rad, red, redde, rede, reed]
v. trans. and intr. to consider or judge; to interpret or expound; to foretell or predict; to discern, see; to scan and interpret written signs; to learn through reading; to teach or impart; to declare aloud. Cf. aread.
reaue [reave, reue, reft, raft]
v. trans. and intr. to take away, to despoil or deprive.
recreaunt [recreant]
adj. craven or false and unfaithful. n. a coward or oathbreaker.
adj. dreaded; respected, worthy.
rend [rent, yrent]
v. trans. to tear or rip down, up, or apart.
renowmed [renowned, renownd, renound, renoumed, renowmd]
ppl. adj. renowned.
repine [repyned, repynd]
v. trans. and intr. to grumble or complain (at something).
rew [rue, rewd]
v. trans. to feel regret or distress (about something); to affect (someone) with sorrow or regret; to feel or show pity (for someone).
sad [sadd sadde]
adj. of people, settled and steadfast; grave or serious; sorrowful or mournful; of things, heavy or sombre.
saluage [sauage, sauadge, savage]
adj. wild, uncultivated; fierce, ferocious, or brutal. n. a wild or uncultivated person; the wild woodsman (a stock type in pageants and shows).
scath [scathe]
n. harm or hurt.
† seize [sease, seaze, sese, seasd, seased, seised, seizd]
v. trans. to put in formal possession of something (esp. in pass.); to set or fasten (hands, claws, etc.) upon; to take formal possession of something (lands, chattels, etc.); to reach or arrive at (a place).
n. saddle.
semblaunce [semblance]
n. appearance; a person's appearance, truly revealed or feigned; likeness, or a likeness, copy.
semblaunt [semblant]
n. the outward appearance or demeanour; seeming or false appearance; a portrait or likeness, esp. of the face.
seuerall [seueral, several]
adj. separate, distinct; of diverse kinds or composition. adv. separately.
sew [sue, sewd, sewde]
v. trans. pursue, follow; to chase; to follow or adopt, to engage in (a code, way of life, etc.); to bring charges, a complaint, or an appeal before a court; to woo or court; intr. to do homage, to serve faithfully.
suit [sute, suitt, suite]
n. pursuit; the action of suing in a court of law, or petitioning, supplicating, or entreating in a (prince’s) court; formal or amorous courtship (as of a knight a lady, a lover the beloved); in phrase ‘suit and service’, a formal tenure requiring from the tenant attendance at the lord’s court and personal service to the lord’s household or body (e.g. in war).
shend [shent]
v. trans. to disgrace, put to shame; to blame or reproach.
sicker [syker]
adj. sure, certain. adv. surely, certainly, without a doubt.
n. assurance, safety from harm.
sike [sich]
adj. such.
silly [seely, sillie]
adj. helpless, weak; trifling or frail, unfortunate; rustic or homely; foolish or ridiculous.
sith, sithens [sithence]
conj. and adv. since.
sith [sythe, sithes]
n. time or occasion.
n. truth; a soothsaying or prognostication.
adv. truly.
soueraigne [soueraign, souerain, soueraine, souerayne, souereigne, sovereign]
n. supreme ruler or monarch. adj. supreme or principal.
spoile [spoyl, spoild, spoyld]
n. booty, goods taken in war; pillage or plundering, spoliation. v. trans. to plunder or pillage (a place, town, etc.); to strip or rob (someone) by violence; to strip or undress a body of (its clothes, armor, etc.). Cf. despoile.
spy [spie, spide, spyde]
v. trans. to examine closely; to discern, catch sight of (something or someone). Cf. espy.
stead [sted, stede, stedd, steade]
n. place, situation, position; a station; a property or estate of land.
in euery stead
in good or doubtful stead
in good or doubtful circumstances.
steep [stepe, stept]
v. trans. to soak or saturate something in or with some liquid; to bathe, esp. metaph. in sleep.
still [stil, styl, styll]
adv. constantly or continually; ever; always.
stound [stownd]
n. a time, moment; a time of trial or suffering; a grievous pain or pang, an ache or shock.
stowre [stoure, stower]
n. an armed combat or battle; the occasion or time of such combat, a time of struggle or suffering.
strand [strond]
n. coast, shore.
streight [straight, strait, straite, strayght, straict, strayt, strayte, streight]
adj. not bent, free from crook, curl, or curve; adv. in a direct line, neither obliquely nor with any deviation; immediately, without delay.
adv. tightly, strictly, with rigor or severity.
adv. immediately, no leisure bated, no, not to stay the grinding of the axe.
surcease [surceasse, surceast]
v. intr. and trans. to stop, desist; to end or refrain from (something). n. a stop, cessation, or temporary suspension.
surquedry [surquedrie]
n. arrogance, pride.
swaine [swayne, swayns]
n. a young male attendant or servant; a man of low rank; a youth; a farm labourer or rustic.
sway [swayd, swaid]
n. the motion of any body, esp. swinging or revolving; power or influence, esp. the power to rule or command. v. trans. to swing back and forth; to cause to swing back and forth; to swing or heave (an instrument or weapon); to wield or bear (the sceptre, the rule, etc.), hence, to rule.
swound [swoon, swone, swoune, swownd, swowne]
n. a faint or swoon, a dream. v. intr. to faint or swoon.
teene [teen]
n. injury, hurt; affliction, suffering. Cf. tine.
n. pl. manners, personal habits, hence, character traits or virtues.
Cf. thewed,
ppl. adj. trained or educated in habits, morals, or manners.
thilke [thilk]
adj. the very, the same, that or this.
adv. after that, then.
thrall [thral, thrald]
n. slave or bondman, servant; captive. v. trans. to enslave, take captive.
thrill [thrild, ythrild]
v. trans. to pierce, penetrate.
pres. ppl. adj. piercing, sharp.
tide [tyde]
n. a time, season; a fitting time, an opportunity or occasion; the recurrent rise and fall of the sea.
tine [tyne, tind, tynd, tynde]
n. affliction, trouble. Cf. teene.
to weet
phr. that is, namely. Cf. wit.
traine [trayne, traind, traynd]
n. treachery, deceit, cunning; a trick or trap; the tail (of an animal) or tail feathers (of a bird); the trailing piece of a garment or dress; a body of retainers or followers, a retinue. v. trans. to educate or bring up; to trail or drag (a garment) along the ground.
trauaile [traueile, trauell, traueill, trauailed, traueiled, traueild/, trauel’d, trauailes, trauailer, trauailing, traueiling]
n. painful labour, strenuous physical or mental exertion; difficulty, vexation; the work and suffering of childbirth; journeying or the act of making a journey;
in phrase toil and travail,
suffering and great exertion. v. intr. to labour or toil, to suffer; to make a journey, to go or proceed (somewhere).
triall [trial tryall]
n. probation, testing (of a claim, of one's merit or strength, etc.); a test, examination, or experiment of this kind; evidence produced through probation or experience.
trow [trowe]
v. trans. to trust or believe in; to suppose or imagine.
troth [troath, trothe, trouth]
n. faithfulness, loyalty; faith pledged or word plighted; truth.
tynde [tind, tynd, tynde]
v. trans. to light or ignite, to inflame.
vassall [uassall, vassal]
n. a feudal inferior; a servant, slave.
Cf. vassalage
n. the condition of being a vassal; feudal servitude.
vaunt [vaunten]
n. a boast or brag. v. intr. and trans. to boast or brag; to display or proclaim with pride.
vild [vilde, vyld, vylde]
adj. vile.
villain [villayn, villein, villen]
n. a peasant or rustic; a scoundrel or criminal.
Cf. villeinous [villanous, villenous]
adj. base, wicked.
Cf. vellenage
n. the condition of being a villain, bondage.
adj. unknown; unfamiliar, strange or uncommon. See couth.
v. trans. to remove clothing; to unfasten or undo.
vneath [vneth, vneathes]
adj. difficult or hard. adv. with difficulty, hardly.
vnkind [vnkynd]
adj. unnatural; without natural goodness, wicked; lacking in kindness or decency.
adj. unnatural or unusual; unnaturally wicked or vicious; cruel.
vnweeting [vnwitting]
adj. unwitting, unaware or ignorant (of something).
vnwonted [vnwoonted]
adj. unusual, unfamiliar.
vouchsafe [voutchsafe, vouchesafed, vouchsaft, vouchsafte]
v. trans. to bestow or grant; to deign to accept or receive, to consent.
vpbray [vpbraid, vpbraid, vpbrayd, vpbrayded]
v. upbraid, censure.
waine [wayne]
n. wagon, cart.
v. trans. to defend; to protect or shield; to parry, defend. n. guard or defense; the care of prisoners or hostages; the guardianship of an underage heir, according to feudal convention, or a minor in such care; a defensive movement in swordplay or fencing; a company of guards, or a garrison.
waste [wast, waist, wayst, wasten]
v. trans. to ravage or destroy, to consume or exhaust; to destroy, wear away; intr. to pine, become feeble, wear away; n. uncultivated or empty ground; destruction, spoiling; the squandering or consumption of something; slow loss or decay in something. adj. of land, desolate or barren; of buildings, ruinous, empty; of other things, useless, empty.
in waste
to no purpose.
wasteful [wastefull, wastful, wastfull]
adj. causing devastation or ruin; desolate, empty.
weed [wede, weede]
n. clothing, dress; pl. costume, garment.
ween [weene, wene, weend, weenen]
v. trans. to think, suppose, or consider; to expect or hope.
v. intr. to misjudge, believe incorrectly.
weet [weete, wete]
v. intr. to know. Cf. wit.
weetlesse [witless, witlesse]
adj. unknowing or unaware, unconscious; without understanding.
welk [welke]
v. intr. to lessen, diminish; (of the sun or moon) to wane, set; trans. to cause to fade, to waste.
n. sky.
wex [wax, waxe, waxen, waxt, wexe, wext, wox, woxe, woxen]
v. intr. to grow, become.
adv. when.
whereas [wheras, where-as]
adv. and conj. where.
whether [whither, whyther]
pron. adj. which (of two). conj. introducing a question or hypothetical statement, often expressing an alternative or choice in corr. constr. with or; introducing a simple indirect question, equivalent to if.
whyleare [whilere, whileare, whylere]
adv. erewhile, recently, some time ago.
whylome [whilom, whylom, whylome, whilome]
adv. at some time past, once, long ago.
n. creature; a man or woman.
wise [wize, wyse, wyze]
n. manner, fashion, style.
v. pret. knew. Cf. wit.
wit [wite, witt, wyte, wytte, weeten, wist]
v. trans. to know.
wite [wyte, witen, wyten]
v. trans. to blame, to fault. n. blame, censure, guilt.
withall [withal, wythal wythall]
adv. in addition, besides, moreover, as well; therewith.
wonne [won, woond, wond]
v. intr. to dwell, to live; to exist or remain; to be accustomed or used (to do something). n. place of dwelling or abode, haunt.
Cf. wont.
n. dwelling place, house.
ppl. adj. accustomed to, in the habit of.
wonted [woonted, wount]
adj. accustomed, usual.
adj. insane, frenzied; wild, excited.
Cf. woodnesse,
n. madness, frenzy, rage, wrath.
wote [wot, wott, wotte]
v. trans. See wit.
wreake [wroke, ywrake, ywroke]
v. trans. to express or perform, to vent or gratify; to avenge or revenge, to take vengance on; to punish. n. punishment or penalty; revenge; vengeance; harm or damage.
pret. pref.applied to past participles to denote the perfection of an action (e.g. "ypent, "ymet").
yede [yeed, yead, yode]
v. intr. to go, make way.
yfere [yfeare]
adv. together.
yrksome [irksome, irkesome, yrkesome]
adj. weary, disgusted; distressing, painful, or disgusting; troublesome.