Thursday - August 18, 2022

In my view, the Christian religion is the most important and one of the first things in which all children, under a free government ought to be instructed... No truth is more evident to my mind than that the Christian religion must be the basis of any government intended to secure the rights and privileges of a free people.
- Preface

1828 Noah Webster Dictionary
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1828.mshaffer.comWord [backward]

Evolution (or devolution) of this word [backward]

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  1. Unwilling; averse; reluctant; hesitating. For wiser brutes are backward to be slaves. – Pope.
  2. Slow; sluggish; dilatory. The mind is backward to undergo the fatigue of weighing every argument. – Watts.
  3. Dull; not quick of apprehension; behind in progress; as, a backward learner.
  4. Late; behind in time; coming after something else, or after the usual time; as, backward fruits; the season is backward.

BACK'WARD, adv. [back and ward. See Ward.]

  1. With the back in advance; as, to move backward.
  2. Toward the back; as, to throw the arms backward; to move backward, and forward.
  3. On the back, or with the back downward; as, to fall backward.
  4. Toward past times or events; as, to look backward on the history of man.
  5. By way of reflection; reflexively. – Davies.
  6. From a better to a worse state; as, public affairs go backward.
  7. In time past; as, let us look some ages backward.
  8. Perversely; from a wrong end. I never yet saw man but she would spell him backward. – Shak.
  9. Toward the beginning; in an order contrary to the natural order; as, to read backward.
  10. In a scriptural sense, to go or turn backward, is to rebel, apostatize, or relapse into sin or idolatry. – Is. i.
  11. Contrarily; in a contrary manner. – Swift. To be driven or turned backward, is to be defeated, or disappointed. – Ps. xl. To turn judgment backward, is to pervert justice and laws. – Is. lix.


The things or state behind or past. In the dark backward or abysm of time. – Shak. [Not proper, nor in use.]

  1. With the back in advance or foremost; as, to ride backward.
  2. Directed to the back or rear; as, backward glances.
  3. The state behind or past.


    In the dark backward and abysm of time.

  4. To keep back; to hinder.

  5. Toward the back; toward the rear; as, to throw the arms backward.
  6. Unwilling; averse; reluctant; hesitating; loath.

    For wiser brutes were backward to be slaves.

  7. On the back, or with the back downward.

    Thou wilt fall backward.

  8. Not well advanced in learning; not quick of apprehension; dull; inapt; as, a backward child.

    "The backward learner." South.
  9. Toward, or in, past time or events; ago.

    Some reigns backward.

  10. Late or behindhand; as, a backward season.
  11. By way of reflection; reflexively.

    Sir J. Davies.
  12. Not advanced in civilization; undeveloped; as, the country or region is in a backward state.
  13. From a better to a worse state, as from honor to shame, from religion to sin.

    The work went backward.

  14. Already past or gone; bygone.


    And flies unconscious o'er each backward year.

  15. In a contrary or reverse manner, way, or direction; contrarily; as, to read backwards.

    We might have . . . beat them backward home.

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BACK'WARDLY, adverb Unwillingly; reluctantly; adversely; perversely.

Why 1828?


Understand the meaning of the writings of early American religious leaders

— Roger (Oklahoma City, OK)

Word of the Day



1. Weight; consequence; a bearing on some interest; that quality of any thing by which it may affect a measure, interest or result. The education of youth is of great importance to a free government. A religious education is of infinite importance to every human being.

2. Weight or consequence in the scale of being.

Thy own importance know.

Nor bound thy narrow views to things below.

3. Weight or consequence in self-estimation.

He believes himself a man of importance.

4. Thing implied; matter; subject; importunity. [In these senses, obsolete.]

Random Word



1. He or that which stretches.

2. A term in bricklaying.

3. A piece of timber in building.

4. A narrow piece of plank placed across a boat for the rowers to set their feet against.

Noah's 1828 Dictionary

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Noah Webster, the Father of American Christian education, wrote the first American dictionary and established a system of rules to govern spelling, grammar, and reading. This master linguist understood the power of words, their definitions, and the need for precise word usage in communication to maintain independence. Webster used the Bible as the foundation for his definitions.

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1828 Noah Webster Dictionary

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