essay

Definitions

  • An art critic that has damaged an artist's painting with his pen, begs to not have his art essays cut up
    An art critic that has damaged an artist's painting with his pen, begs to not have his art essays cut up
  • WordNet 3.6
    • v essay make an effort or attempt "He tried to shake off his fears","The infant had essayed a few wobbly steps","The police attempted to stop the thief","He sought to improve himself","She always seeks to do good in the world"
    • v essay put to the test, as for its quality, or give experimental use to "This approach has been tried with good results","Test this recipe"
    • n essay a tentative attempt
    • n essay an analytic or interpretive literary composition
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Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
    • Essay (Lit) A composition treating of any particular subject; -- usually shorter and less methodical than a formal, finished treatise; as, an essay on the life and writings of Homer; an essay on fossils, or on commerce.
    • Essay An assay. See Assay n.
    • Essay An effort made, or exertion of body or mind, for the performance of anything; a trial; attempt; as, to make an essay to benefit a friend. "The essay at organization."
    • Essay To exert one's power or faculties upon; to make an effort to perform; to attempt; to endeavor; to make experiment or trial of; to try. "What marvel if I thus essay to sing?""Essaying nothing she can not perform.""A danger lest the young enthusiast . . . should essay the impossible."
    • Essay To test the value and purity of (metals); to assay. See Assay.
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Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
    • n essay A trial, attempt, or endeavor; an effort made; exertion of body or mind to perform or accomplish anything: as, an essay toward reform; an essay of strength.
    • n essay An experimental trial; a test.
    • n essay An assay or test of the qualities of a metal. See assay, n.
    • n essay In lit., a discursive composition concerned with a particular subject, usually shorter and less methodical and finished than a treatise; a short disquisition: as, an essay on the life and writings of Homer; an essay on fossils; an essay on commerce.
    • n essay Synonyms Struggle.
    • n essay Treatise, dissertation, disquisition, paper, tract, tractate. See definition of treatise.
    • essay To make trial of; attempt; exert one's power or faculties upon; put to the test: as, to essay a difficult feat; to essay the courage of a braggart.
    • essay To try and test the value and purity of, as metals. Now written assay (which see).
    • essay Synonyms Undertake, Endeavor, etc. See attempt.
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Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
    • n Essay es′ā a trial: an experiment: a written composition less elaborate than a treatise
    • v.t Essay to try: to attempt: to make experiment of:—pr.p. essay′ing; pa.p. essayed′
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Quotations

  • Margaret Fuller
    Margaret%20Fuller
    “Essays, entitled critical, are epistles addressed to the public, through which the mind of the recluse relieves itself of its impressions.”
  • Virginia Woolf
    Virginia%20Woolf
    “A good essay must have this permanent quality about it; it must draw its curtain round us, but it must be a curtain that shuts us in not out.”
  • Samuel Johnson
    Samuel%20Johnson
    “I found you essay to be good and original. However, the part that was original was not good and the part that was good was not original.”

Etymology

Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
F. essai, fr. L. exagium, a weighing, weight, balance; ex, out + agere, to drive, do; cf. examen, exagmen, a means of weighing, a weighing, the tongue of a balance, exigere, to drive out, examine, weigh, Gr. 'exa`gion a weight, 'exagia`zein to examine, 'exa`gein to drive out, export. See Agent, and cf. Exact Examine Assay
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
O. Fr. essai—L. exagium, weighing—exagĕre, to try, examine.

Usage

In literature:

An essay in economic history.
"Introduction to the Science of Sociology" by Robert E. Park
Put your essay away for the present.
"A Bunch of Cherries" by L. T. Meade
I 'll help you a good bit with your essay, Leuchy.
"Hollyhock" by L. T. Meade
Not only the interest of the class, but of the whole school, was intense on the writing of these essays.
"Miss Ashton's New Pupil" by Mrs. S. S. Robbins
She wrote the essay for me, the prize essay which was hers, not mine.
"The Time of Roses" by L. T. Meade
HISTORICAL LECTURES AND ESSAYS.
"Lover or Friend" by Rosa Nouchette Carey
Translated, with an Essay, by James Ross.
"The Industries of Animals" by Frédéric Houssay
Macaulay's Essays on Addison and Horace Walpole, 18.
"Notes and Queries, Index of Volume 5, January-June, 1852" by Various
Prizes of $25 were offered for essays on woman suffrage by girls in the high school.
"The History of Woman Suffrage, Volume VI" by Various
The essay on Marino also is full of interest.
"A Critic in Pall Mall" by Oscar Wilde
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In poetry:

But why should we essay to sing
Her thousand sprightly graces?
She has the merriest of ways,
The prettiest of faces.
"Our Helen" by Effie Afton
Tours, Travels, Essays, too, I wist,
And Sermons, to thy mill bring grist;
And then thou hast the "Navy List,"
My Murray.
"Impromptus" by Lord George Gordon Byron
Yet stoops He, ever pleased to mark
Our rude essays of love,
Faint as the pipe of wakening lark,
Heard by some twilight grove:
"Cathchism" by John Keble
I, too, not wishing to remain as mute,
In happy fits essay'd
To finger with rude touch the piping lute;
I touch'd it, but I made
"In Tempe" by Alexander Anderson
What whisper from the world new-born
Recalled thy footsteps to essay
The far, inevitable way
Lit sunward from thy mists of morn?
"The Testimony of the Suns" by George Sterling
Come, essay a sprightly measure,
Tuned to some light song of pleasure.
Maidens, let your brows be crowned
As we foot this merry round.
"A Bridal Measure" by Paul Laurence Dunbar

In news:

Gore Vidal was a literary juggernaut who wrote novels including 'Lincoln' and the satirical 'Myra Breckinridge,' and essays critics consider among the most elegant in the English language.
I wanted to show my talent and illustrate exactly my love for the art of words in my essay.
Essays on Exile and Language.
Is There Anything Redeeming About Taylor Cotter's 'I'm Sad I'm Not Poor' HuffPo Essay.
The essay of life and experiences of a college student.
"There Is No Progress in Philosophy" by Eric Dietrich, in Essays in Philosophy, July 2011.
It's probably been 20 years since I happened upon an essay written by my daughter, who is now a 38-year-old mother of two.
The essay was about the importance of her sense of humor in dealing with bullying.
Mother's anguish emerges in Oprah magazine essay on teen's suicide.
Robot essay graders' usefulness debated.
The following essay is based on the James Lecture presented at the New York Institute for the Humanities on October 14, 1982.
Antoinette D'Addario, a freshman at Fabius-Pompey High School, wrote this essay for The Post-Standard's Nov 22 Voices page.
Yet that is how Ian Buruma describes me in a review of a recently published translation of Victor Segalen's Essay on Exoticism, for which I wrote the foreword.
Read the First Chapter of Collected Essays.
Stephen Jay Gould , the evolutionary theorist at Harvard University whose research, lectures and prolific output of essays helped to reinvigorate the field of paleontology, died yesterday at his home in Manhattan.
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In science:

Probab., Essays in honour of Lajos Takacs, J.
Determinantal random point fields
Strebel, Finitely presented soluble groups, in Group theory: Essays for Philip Hal l, ed. by K.W.
Problems on the geometry of finitely generated solvable groups
Probab., Essays in honour of La jos Takacs, J.
Gaussian limit for determinantal random point fields
In this essay I have reviewed our current understanding of classical gauge symmetries in Hamiltonian formulations of generally covariant theories which are derivable from a Lagrangian.
Quantum general invariance and loop gravity
Fronsdal, in “Essay on Supersymmetry”, Reidel, Math.
Generalized Space-time Supersymmetries, Division Algebras and Octonionic M-theory
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