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

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balance

BAL'ANCE, n. [L.bilanx, bis, twice, and lanz, a dish, the double dish.]

1. A pair of scales, for weighing commodities. It consists of a beam or lever suspended exactly in the middle, with a scale or basin hung to each extremity, of precisely equal weight.

The Roman balance, our steel-yard, consists of a lever or beam, movable on a center, and suspended near one of its extremities. Hence,

2. One of the simple powers in mechanics, used for determining the equality or difference of weight in heavy bodies,and consequently their masses or quantity of matter.

3. Figuratively, an impartial state of the mind, in deliberating; or a just estimate of the reasons and arguments on

both sides of a question, which gives to each its due weight, or

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force and importance.

4. As balance signifies equal weight, or equality, it is by custom used for the weight or sum necessary to make two unequal weights or sums equal; that which is necessary to bring them to a balance or equipoise. Hence, in accounts, balance is the difference of two sums; as upon an adjustment of accounts, a balance was found against A, in favor of B. Hence, to pay a balance, is to pay the difference and make the two accounts equal.

5. Balance of trade is an equal exportation of domestic productions, and importation of foreign. But, usually, the term is applied to the difference between the amount or value of the commodities exported and imported. Hence the common expression, the balance of trade is against or in favor of a country.

6. Equipoise, or an equal state of power between nations; as the "balance of power."

7. Equipoise, or an equal state of the passions.

The balance of the mind.

8. That which renders weight or authority equal.

The only balance attempted against the ancient kings, was a body of nobles.

9. The part of a clock or watch which regulates the beats.

10. In astronomy, a sign in the zodiac, called in Latin Libra, which the sun enters at the equinox in September.

The hydrostatic balance is an instrument to determine the specific gravity of fluid and solid bodies.

The assay balance is one which is used in docimastic operations, to determine the weight of minute bodies.

BAL'ANCE, v.t. To adjust the weights in the scales of a balance so as to bring them to an equipoise. Hence,

2. To weigh reasons; to compare, by estimating the relative force, importance, or value of different things; as, to balance good and evil.

3. To regulate different powers, so as to keep them in a state of just proportion; as, to balance Europe, or the powers of Europe.

4. To counterpoise; to make of equal weight or force; to make equipollent; as, one species of attraction balances another.

One expression in the letter check and balance another.

5. To settle and adjust, as an account; to find the difference of two accounts, and to pay the balance, or difference, and make them equal.

6. In seamanship, to contract a sail, by rolling up a small part of it at one corner.

BAL'ANCE, v.i. To have on each side equal weight; to be on a poise.

2. To hesitate; to fluctuate between motives which appear of equal force, as a balance plays when poised by equal weights.

Between right and wrong, never balance a moment.



Evolution (or devolution) of this word [balance]

1828 Webster1844 Webster1913 Webster

BAL'ANCE, n. [L.bilanx, bis, twice, and lanz, a dish, the double dish.]

1. A pair of scales, for weighing commodities. It consists of a beam or lever suspended exactly in the middle, with a scale or basin hung to each extremity, of precisely equal weight.

The Roman balance, our steel-yard, consists of a lever or beam, movable on a center, and suspended near one of its extremities. Hence,

2. One of the simple powers in mechanics, used for determining the equality or difference of weight in heavy bodies,and consequently their masses or quantity of matter.

3. Figuratively, an impartial state of the mind, in deliberating; or a just estimate of the reasons and arguments on

both sides of a question, which gives to each its due weight, or

15

force and importance.

4. As balance signifies equal weight, or equality, it is by custom used for the weight or sum necessary to make two unequal weights or sums equal; that which is necessary to bring them to a balance or equipoise. Hence, in accounts, balance is the difference of two sums; as upon an adjustment of accounts, a balance was found against A, in favor of B. Hence, to pay a balance, is to pay the difference and make the two accounts equal.

5. Balance of trade is an equal exportation of domestic productions, and importation of foreign. But, usually, the term is applied to the difference between the amount or value of the commodities exported and imported. Hence the common expression, the balance of trade is against or in favor of a country.

6. Equipoise, or an equal state of power between nations; as the "balance of power."

7. Equipoise, or an equal state of the passions.

The balance of the mind.

8. That which renders weight or authority equal.

The only balance attempted against the ancient kings, was a body of nobles.

9. The part of a clock or watch which regulates the beats.

10. In astronomy, a sign in the zodiac, called in Latin Libra, which the sun enters at the equinox in September.

The hydrostatic balance is an instrument to determine the specific gravity of fluid and solid bodies.

The assay balance is one which is used in docimastic operations, to determine the weight of minute bodies.

BAL'ANCE, v.t. To adjust the weights in the scales of a balance so as to bring them to an equipoise. Hence,

2. To weigh reasons; to compare, by estimating the relative force, importance, or value of different things; as, to balance good and evil.

3. To regulate different powers, so as to keep them in a state of just proportion; as, to balance Europe, or the powers of Europe.

4. To counterpoise; to make of equal weight or force; to make equipollent; as, one species of attraction balances another.

One expression in the letter check and balance another.

5. To settle and adjust, as an account; to find the difference of two accounts, and to pay the balance, or difference, and make them equal.

6. In seamanship, to contract a sail, by rolling up a small part of it at one corner.

BAL'ANCE, v.i. To have on each side equal weight; to be on a poise.

2. To hesitate; to fluctuate between motives which appear of equal force, as a balance plays when poised by equal weights.

Between right and wrong, never balance a moment.

BAL'ANCE, n. [Fr. balance; Sp. balanza; It. bilancia; L. bilanx, bis, twice, and lanx, a dish, the double dish.]

  1. A pair of scales for weighing commodities. It consists of a beam or lever suspended exactly in the middle, with a scale or basin hung to each extremity, of precisely equal weight. The Roman balance, our steel-yard, consists of a lever or beam, movable on a center, and suspended near one of its extremities. Hence,
  2. One of the simple powers in mechanics, used for determining the equality or difference of weight in heavy bodies, and consequently their masses or quantity of matter. – Encyc.
  3. Figuratively, an impartial state of the mind, in deliberating; or a just estimate of the reasons and arguments on both sides of a question, which gives to each its due weight, or force and importance.
  4. As balance signifies equal weight, or equality, it is by custom used for the weight or sum necessary to make two unequal weights or sums equal; that which is necessary to bring them to a balance or equipoise. Hence, in accounts, balance is the difference of two sums; as upon an adjustment of accounts, a balance was found against A in favor of B. Hence, to pay a balance, is to pay the difference and make the two accounts equal.
  5. Balance of trade is an equal exportation of domestic productions, and importation of foreign. But, usually, the term is applied to the difference between the amount or value of the commodities exported and imported. Hence the common expression, The balance of trade is against or in favor of a country.
  6. Equipoise, or an equal state of power between nations; as, the balance of power.
  7. Equipoise, or an equal state of the passions. The balance of the mind. – Pope.
  8. That which renders weight or authority equal. The only balance attempted against the ancient kings, was a body of nobles. – J. Adams.
  9. The part of a clock or watch which regulates the beats.
  10. In astronomy, a sign in the zodiac, called in Latin, Libra, which the sun enters at the equinox in September. The hydrostatic balance is an instrument to determine the specific gravity of fluid and solid bodies. The assay balance is one which is used in docimastic operations, to determine the weight of minute bodies.

BAL'ANCE, v.t.

  1. To adjust the weights in the scales of a balance so as to bring them to an equipoise. Hence,
  2. To weigh reasons; to compare, by estimating the relative force, importance, or value of different things; as, to balance good and evil.
  3. To regulate different powers, so as to keep them in a state of just proportion; as, to balance Europe, or the powers of Europe.
  4. To counterpoise; to make of equal weight or force; to make equipollent; as, one species of attraction balances another. One expression in the letter must check and balance another. – Kent.
  5. To settle and adjust, as an account; to find the difference of two accounts, and to pay the balance, or difference, and make them equal.
  6. In seamanship, to contract a sail, by rolling up a small part of it at one corner. – Mar. Dict. BAL'ANCE, v. i.
  7. To have on each side equal weight; to be on a poise.
  8. To hesitate; to fluctuate between motives which appear of equal force, as a balance plays when poised by equal weights. Between right and wrong, never balance a moment. – Anon.

Bal"ance
  1. An apparatus for weighing.

    * In its simplest form, a balance consists of a beam or lever supported exactly in the middle, having two scales or basins of equal weight suspended from its extremities. Another form is that of the Roman balance, our steelyard, consisting of a lever or beam, suspended near one of its extremities, on the longer arm of which a counterpoise slides. The name is also given to other forms of apparatus for weighing bodies, as to the combinations of levers making up platform scales; and even to devices for weighing by the elasticity of a spring.

  2. To bring to an equipoise, as the scales of a balance by adjusting the weights; to weigh in a balance.
  3. To have equal weight on each side; to be in equipoise; as, the scales balance.
  4. Act of weighing mentally; comparison; estimate.

    A fair balance of the advantages on either side.
    Atterbury.

  5. To support on a narrow base, so as to keep from falling; as, to balance a plate on the end of a cane; to balance one's self on a tight rope.
  6. To fluctuate between motives which appear of equal force; to waver; to hesitate.

    He would not balance or err in the determination of his choice.
    Locke.

  7. Equipoise between the weights in opposite scales.
  8. To equal in number, weight, force, or proportion; to counterpoise, counterbalance, counteract, or neutralize.

    One expression . . . must check and balance another.
    Kent.

  9. To move toward a person or couple, and then back.
  10. The state of being in equipoise; equilibrium; even adjustment; steadiness.

    And hung a bottle on each side
    To make his balance true.
    Cowper.

    The order and balance of the country were destroyed.
    Buckle.

    English workmen completely lose their balance.
    J. S. Mill.

  11. To compare in relative force, importance, value, etc.; to estimate.

    Balance the good and evil of things.
    L'Estrange.

  12. An equality between the sums total of the two sides of an account; as, to bring one's accounts to a balance; -- also, the excess on either side; as, the balance of an account.

    "A balance at the banker's." Thackeray.

    I still think the balance of probabilities leans towards the account given in the text.
    J. Peile.

  13. To settle and adjust, as an account; to make two accounts equal by paying the difference between them.

    I am very well satisfied that it is not in my power to balance accounts with my Maker.
    Addison.

  14. A balance wheel, as of a watch, or clock. See Balance wheel (in the Vocabulary).
  15. To make the sums of the debits and credits of an account equal; -- said of an item; as, this payment, or credit, balances the account.
  16. The constellation Libra.

    (b)
  17. To arrange accounts in such a way that the sum total of the debits is equal to the sum total of the credits; as, to balance a set of books.
  18. A movement in dancing. See Balance, v. t., 8.

    Balance electrometer, a kind of balance, with a poised beam, which indicates, by weights suspended from one arm, the mutual attraction of oppositely electrified surfaces. Knight. -- Balance fish. (Zoöl) See Hammerhead. -- Balance knife, a carving or table knife the handle of which overbalances the blade, and so keeps it from contact with the table. -- Balance of power (Politics), such an adjustment of power among sovereign states that no one state is in a position to interfere with the independence of the others; international equilibrium; also, the ability (of a state or a third party within a state) to control the relations between sovereign states or between dominant parties in a state. -- Balance sheet (Bookkeeping), a paper showing the balances of the open accounts of a business, the debit and credit balances footing up equally, if the system of accounts be complete and the balances correctly taken. -- Balance thermometer, a thermometer mounted as a balance so that the movement of the mercurial column changes the inclination of the tube. With the aid of electrical or mechanical devices adapted to it, it is used for the automatic regulation of the temperature of rooms warmed artificially, and as a fire alarm. -- Balance of torsion. See Torsion Balance. -- Balance of trade (Pol. Econ.), an equilibrium between the money values of the exports and imports of a country; or more commonly, the amount required on one side or the other to make such an equilibrium. -- Balance valve, a valve whose surfaces are so arranged that the fluid pressure tending to seat, and that tending to unseat, the valve, are nearly in equilibrium; esp., a puppet valve which is made to operate easily by the admission of steam to both sides. See Puppet valve. -- Hydrostatic balance. See under Hydrostatic. -- To lay in balance, to put up as a pledge or security. [Obs.] Chaucer. -- To strike a balance, to find out the difference between the debit and credit sides of an account.

  19. To move toward, and then back from, reciprocally; as, to balance partners.
  20. To contract, as a sail, into a narrower compass; as, to balance the boom mainsail.

    Balanced valve. See Balance valve, under Balance, n.

    Syn. -- To poise; weigh; adjust; counteract; neutralize; equalize.

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Balance

BAL'ANCE, noun [Latin bilanx, bis, twice, and lanz, a dish, the double dish.]

1. A pair of scales, for weighing commodities. It consists of a beam or lever suspended exactly in the middle, with a scale or basin hung to each extremity, of precisely equal weight.

The Roman balance our steel-yard, consists of a lever or beam, movable on a center, and suspended near one of its extremities. Hence,

2. One of the simple powers in mechanics, used for determining the equality or difference of weight in heavy bodies, and consequently their masses or quantity of matter.

3. Figuratively, an impartial state of the mind, in deliberating; or a just estimate of the reasons and arguments on

both sides of a question, which gives to each its due weight, or force and importance.

4. As balance signifies equal weight, or equality, it is by custom used for the weight or sum necessary to make two unequal weights or sums equal; that which is necessary to bring them to a balance or equipoise. Hence, in accounts, balance is the difference of two sums; as upon an adjustment of accounts, a balance was found against A, in favor of B. Hence, to pay a balance is to pay the difference and make the two accounts equal.

5. balance of trade is an equal exportation of domestic productions, and importation of foreign. But, usually, the term is applied to the difference between the amount or value of the commodities exported and imported. Hence the common expression, the balance of trade is against or in favor of a country.

6. Equipoise, or an equal state of power between nations; as the 'balance of power.'

7. Equipoise, or an equal state of the passions.

The balance of the mind.

8. That which renders weight or authority equal.

The only balance attempted against the ancient kings, was a body of nobles.

9. The part of a clock or watch which regulates the beats.

10. In astronomy, a sign in the zodiac, called in Latin Libra, which the sun enters at the equinox in September.

The hydrostatic balance is an instrument to determine the specific gravity of fluid and solid bodies.

The assay balance is one which is used in docimastic operations, to determine the weight of minute bodies.

BAL'ANCE, verb transitive To adjust the weights in the scales of a balance so as to bring them to an equipoise. Hence,

2. To weigh reasons; to compare, by estimating the relative force, importance, or value of different things; as, to balance good and evil.

3. To regulate different powers, so as to keep them in a state of just proportion; as, to balance Europe, or the powers of Europe.

4. To counterpoise; to make of equal weight or force; to make equipollent; as, one species of attraction balances another.

One expression in the letter check and balance another.

5. To settle and adjust, as an account; to find the difference of two accounts, and to pay the balance or difference, and make them equal.

6. In seamanship, to contract a sail, by rolling up a small part of it at one corner.

BAL'ANCE, verb intransitive To have on each side equal weight; to be on a poise.

2. To hesitate; to fluctuate between motives which appear of equal force, as a balance plays when poised by equal weights.

Between right and wrong, never balance a moment.

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Word of the Day

importance

IMPORT'ANCE, n.

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.]

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talapoin

TALAPOIN', n. In Siam, a priest, or one devoted to religion; also, a species of monkey.

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