Definify.com

Webster 1913 Edition


Touch

Touch

,
Verb.
T.
[
imp. & p. p.
Touched
;
p. pr. & vb. n.
Touching
.]
[F.
toucher
, OF.
touchier
,
tuchier
; of Teutonic origin; cf. OHG.
zucchen
,
zukken
, to twitch, pluck, draw, G.
zukken
,
zukken
, v. intens. fr. OHG.
ziohan
to draw, G.
ziehen
, akin to E.
tug
. See
Tuck
,
Verb.
T.
,
Tug
, and cf.
Tocsin
,
Toccata
.]
1.
To come in contact with; to hit or strike lightly against; to extend the hand, foot, or the like, so as to reach or rest on.
Him thus intent Ithuriel with his spear
Touched
lightly.
Milton.
2.
To perceive by the sense of feeling.
Nothing but body can be
touched
or
touch
.
Greech.
3.
To come to; to reach; to attain to.
The god, vindictive, doomed them never more-
Ah, men unblessed! – to
touch
their natal shore.
Pope.
4.
To try; to prove, as with a touchstone.
[Obs.]
Wherein I mean to
touch
your love indeed.
Shakespeare
5.
To relate to; to concern; to affect.
The quarrel
toucheth
none but us alone.
Shakespeare
6.
To handle, speak of, or deal with; to treat of.
Storial thing that
toucheth
gentilesse.
Chaucer.
7.
To meddle or interfere with;
as, I have not
touched
the books
.
Pope.
What of sweet before
Hath
touched
my sense, flat seems to this and harsh.
Milton.
The tender sire was
touched
with what he said.
Addison.
9.
To mark or delineate with touches; to add a slight stroke to with the pencil or brush.
The lines, though
touched
but faintly, are drawn right.
Pope.
10.
To infect; to affect slightly.
Bacon.
11.
To make an impression on; to have effect upon.
Its face . . . so hard that a file will not
touch
it.
Moxon.
12.
To strike; to manipulate; to play on;
as, to
touch
an instrument of music
.
[They]
touched
their golden harps.
Milton.
13.
To perform, as a tune; to play.
A person is the royal retinue
touched
a light and lively air on the flageolet.
Sir W. Scott.
14.
To influence by impulse; to impel forcibly.
“ No decree of mine, . . . [to] touch with lightest moment of impulse his free will,”
Milton.
15.
To harm, afflict, or distress.
Let us make a covenant with thee, that thou wilt do us no hurt, as we have not
touched
thee.
Gen. xxvi. 28, 29.
16.
To affect with insanity, especially in a slight degree; to make partially insane; – rarely used except in the past participle.
She feared his head was a little
touched
.
Ld. Lytton.
17.
(Geom.)
To be tangent to. See
Tangent
,
Adj.
18.
To lay a hand upon for curing disease.
To touch a sail
(Naut.)
,
to bring it so close to the wind that its weather leech shakes.
To touch the wind
(Naut.)
,
to keep the ship as near the wind as possible.
To touch up
,
to repair; to improve by touches or emendation.

Touch

,
Verb.
I.
1.
To be in contact; to be in a state of junction, so that no space is between;
as, two spheres
touch
only at points
.
Johnson.
2.
To fasten; to take effect; to make impression.
[R.]
Strong waters pierce metals, and will
touch
upon gold, that will not
touch
upon silver.
Bacon.
3.
To treat anything in discourse, especially in a slight or casual manner; – often with on or upon.
If the antiquaries have
touched
upon it, they immediately
quitted it.
Addison.
4.
(Naut)
To be brought, as a sail, so close to the wind that its weather leech shakes.

Touch

,
Noun.
[Cf. F.
touche
. See
Touch
,
Verb.
]
1.
The act of touching, or the state of being touched; contact.
Their
touch
affrights me as a serpent’s sting.
Shakespeare
2.
(Physiol.)
The sense by which pressure or traction exerted on the skin is recognized; the sense by which the properties of bodies are determined by contact; the tactile sense. See
Tactile sense
, under
Tactile
.
The spider's
touch
, how exquisitely fine.
Pope.
☞ Pure tactile feelings are necessarily rare, since temperature sensations and muscular sensations are more or less combined with them. The organs of touch are found chiefly in the epidermis of the skin and certain underlying nervous structures.
3.
Act or power of exciting emotion.
Not alone
The death of Fulvia, with more urgent
touches
,
Do strongly speak to us.
Shakespeare
4.
An emotion or affection.
A true, natural, and a sensible
touch
of mercy.
Hooker.
5.
Personal reference or application.
[Obs.]
Speech of
touch
toward others should be sparingly used.
Bacon.
6.
A stroke;
as, a
touch
of raillery; a satiric
touch
; hence, animadversion; censure; reproof
.
I never bare any
touch
of conscience with greater regret.
Eikon Basilike.
7.
A single stroke on a drawing or a picture.
Never give the least
touch
with your pencil till you have well examined your design.
Dryden.
8.
Feature; lineament; trait.
Of many faces, eyes, and hearts,
To have the
touches
dearest prized.
Shakespeare
9.
The act of the hand on a musical instrument; bence, in the plural, musical notes.
Soft stillness and the night
Become the
touches
of sweet harmony.
Shakespeare
10.
A small quantity intermixed; a little; a dash.
Eyes La
touch
of Sir Peter Lely in them.
Hazlitt.
Madam, I have a
touch
of your condition.
Shakespeare
11.
A hint; a suggestion; slight notice.
A small
touch
will put him in mind of them.
Bacon.
12.
A slight and brief essay.
[Colloq.]
Print my preface in such form as, in the booksellers' phrase, will make a sixpenny
touch
.
Swift.
13.
A touchstone; hence, stone of the sort used for touchstone.
[Obs.]
“ Now do I play the touch.”
Shak.
A neat new monument of
touch
and alabaster.
Fuller.
14.
Hence, examination or trial by some decisive standard; test; proof; tried quality.
Equity, the true
touch
of all laws.
Carew.
Friends of noble
touch
.
Shakespeare
15.
(Mus.)
The particular or characteristic mode of action, or the resistance of the keys of an instrument to the fingers;
as, a heavy
touch
, or a light
touch
; also, the manner of touching, striking, or pressing the keys of a piano;
as, a legato
touch
; a staccato
touch
.
16.
(Shipbilding)
The broadest part of a plank worked top and but (see
Top and but
, under
Top
,
Noun.
), or of one worked anchor-stock fashion (that is, tapered from the middle to both ends); also, the angles of the stern timbers at the counters.
J. Knowles.
17.
(Football)
That part of the field which is beyond the line of flags on either side.
Encyc. of Rural Sports.
18.
A boys' game; tag.
In touch
(a)
(Football)
,
outside of bounds.
T. Hughes.
(b)
in communication; communicating, once or repeatedly.
To be in touch
,
(a)
to be in contact, communication, or in sympathy.
(b)
to be aware of current events.
To keep touch
.
(a)
To be true or punctual to a promise or engagement
[Obs.]
; hence, to fulfill duly a function.

My mind and senses
keep touch
and time.
Sir W. Scott.
(b)
To keep in contact; to maintain connection or sympathy; – with with or of. Also
to keep in touch
.
Touch and go
,
a phrase descriptive of a narrow escape.
True as touch
(i. e., touchstone),
quite true.
[Obs.]

Webster 1828 Edition


Touch

TOUCH

,
Verb.
T.
tuch. [L. tango, originally tago, [our vulgar tag.] pret. tetigi,
pp.
tactus.]
1.
To come in contact with; to hit or strike against.
He touched the hollow of his thigh. Gen. 32. Matt.9.
Esther drew near, and touched the top of the scepter. Esth.5.
2.
To perceive by the sense of feeling.
Nothing but body can be touch'd or touch.
3.
To come to; to reach; to attain to.
The god vindictive doom'd them never more,
Ah men unbless'd! to touch that natal shore.
4.
To try, as gold with a stone.
Wherein I mean to touch your love indeed--
5.
To relate to; to concern.
The quarrel toucheth none but thee alone.
[This sense is now nearly obsolete.]
6.
To handle slightly.
7.
To meddle with. I have not touched the books.
8.
To affect.
What of sweet
Hath touch'd my sense, flat seems to this.
9.
To move; to soften; to melt.
The tender sire was touch'd with what he said.
10. To mark or delineate slightly.
The lines, though touch'd but faintly--
11. To infect; as men touched with pestilent diseases. [Little used.]
12. To make an impression on.
Its face must be--so hard that the file will not touch it.
13. To strike, as an instrument of music; to play on.
They touch'd their golden harps.
14. To influence by impulse; to impel forcibly.
No decree of mine,
To touch with lightest moment of impulse
His free will.
15. To treat slightly. In his discourse, he barely touched upon the subject deemed the most interesting.
16. To afflict or distress. Gen.26.
To touch up, to repair; or to improve by slight touches or emendations.
To touch the wind, in seamen's language, is to keep the ship as near the wind as possible.

TOUCH

,
Verb.
I.
tuch. To be in contact with; to be in a state of junction, so that no space is between. Two spheres touch only at points.
1.
To fasten on; to take effect on.
Strong waters will touch upon gold,that will not touch silver.
2.
To treat of slightly in discourse.
To touch at, to come or go to, without stay.
The ship touched at Lisbon.
The next day we touched at Sidon. Acts 27.touch on or upon, to mention slightly.
If the antiquaries have touched upon it, they have immediately quitted it.
1.
In the sense of touch at. [Little used.]

TOUCH

,
Noun.
tuch. Contact; the hitting of two bodies; the junction of two bodies at the surface, so that there is no space between them. The mimosa shrinks at the slightest touch.
1.
The sense of feeling; one of the five senses. We say, a thing is cold or warm to the touch; silk is soft to the touch.
The spider's touch how exquisitely fine!
2.
The act of touching. The touch of cold water made him shrink.
3.
The state of being touched.
--That never touch was welcome to thy hand
Unless I touch'd.
4.
Examination by a stone.
5.
Test; that by which any thing is examined.
Equity, the true touch of all laws.
6.
Proof; tried qualities.
My friends of noble touch.
7.
Single act of a pencil on a picture.
Never give the least touch with your pencil, till you have well examined your design.
8.
Feature; lineament.
Of many faces, eyes and hearts,
To have the touches dearest priz'd.
9.
Act of the hand on a musical instrument.
Soft stillness and the night
Become the touches of sweet harmony.
10. Power of exciting the affections.
Not alone
The death of Fulvia, with more urgent touches,
Do strongly speak t'us.
11. Something of passion of affection.
He both makes intercession to God for sinners, and exercises dominion over all men, with a true, natural and sensible touch of mercy.
12. Particular application of any thing to a person.
Speech of touch towards others should be sparingly used.
13. A stroke; as a touch of raillery; a satiric touch.
14. Animadversion; censure; reproof.
I never bore any touch of conscience with greater regret.
15. Exact performance of agreement.
I keep touch with my promise.
16. A small quantity intermixed.
Madam, I have a touch of your condition.
17. A hint; suggestion; slight notice.
A small touch will put him in mind of them.
18. A cant word for a slight essay.
Print my preface in such forms, in the bookseller's phrase, will make a sixpenny touch. [Not in use.]
19. In music, the resistance of the keys of an instrument to the fingers; as a heavy touch, or light touch.
20. In music, an organ is said to have a good touch or stop,when the keys close well.
21. In ship-building, touch is the broadest part of a plank worked top and butt; or the middle of a plank worked anchor-stock fashion; also, the angles of the stern timbers at the counters.

Definition 2022


touch

touch

English

Verb

touch (third-person singular simple present touches, present participle touching, simple past and past participle touched)

  1. Primarily physical senses.
    1. (transitive) To make physical contact with; to bring the hand, finger or other part of the body into contact with. [from 14th c.]
      I touched her face softly.
    2. (transitive) To come into (involuntary) contact with; to meet or intersect. [from 14th c.]
      Sitting on the bench, the hem of her skirt touched the ground.
    3. (intransitive) To come into physical contact, or to be in physical contact. [from 14th c.]
      They stood next to each other, their shoulders touching.
    4. (intransitive) To make physical contact with a thing. [from 14th c.]
      Please can I have a look, if I promise not to touch?
    5. (transitive) To physically disturb; to interfere with, molest, or attempt to harm through contact. [from 14th c.]
      If you touch her, I'll kill you.
      • Bible, Genesis xxvi. 28, 29
        Let us make a covenant with thee, that thou wilt do us no hurt, as we have not touched thee.
    6. (transitive) To physically affect in specific ways implied by context. [from 15th c.]
      Frankly, this wood's so strong that sandpaper won't touch it.
    7. (transitive) To consume, or otherwise use. [from 15th c.]
      Are you all right? You've hardly touched your lunch.
      • 1959, Georgette Heyer, chapter 1, in The Unknown Ajax:
        But Richmond [] appeared to lose himself in his own reflections. Some pickled crab, which he had not touched, had been removed with a damson pie; and his sister saw [] that he had eaten no more than a spoonful of that either.
    8. (intransitive) Of a ship or its passengers: to land, to make a short stop (at). [from 16th c.]
      • 1851, Herman Melville, Moby-Dick:
        Now a certain grand merchant ship once touched at Rokovoko, and its commander from all accounts, a very stately punctilious gentleman, at least for a sea captain this commander was invited to the wedding feast of Queequeg's sister, a pretty young princess just turned of ten.
    9. (transitive, now historical) To lay hands on (someone suffering from scrofula) as a form of cure, as formerly practised by English and French monarchs. [from 17th c.]
      • 1971, Keith Thomas, Religion and the Decline of Magic, Folio Society (2012), page 189:
        But in fact the English kings of the seventeenth century usually began to touch form the day of their accession, without waiting for any such consecration.
    10. (transitive or reflexive) To sexually excite with the fingers; to finger or ****. [from 20th c.]
      Her parents had caught her touching herself when she was fifteen.
    11. (intransitive, obsolete) To fasten; to take effect; to make impression.
      • Francis Bacon (1561-1626)
        Strong waters pierce metals, and will touch upon gold, that will not touch upon silver.
    12. (nautical) To bring (a sail) so close to the wind that its weather leech shakes.
    13. (intransitive, nautical) To be brought, as a sail, so close to the wind that its weather leech shakes.
    14. (nautical) To keep the ship as near (the wind) as possible.
      to touch the wind
  2. Primarily non-physical senses.
    1. (transitive) To imbue or endow with a specific quality. [from 14th c.]
      My grandfather, as many people know, was touched with greatness.
    2. (transitive, archaic) To deal with in speech or writing; to mention briefly, to allude to. [from 14th c.]
      • 1621, Robert Burton, The Anatomy of Melancholy, I.2.4.vii:
        Next to sorrow still I may annex such accidents as procure fear; for besides those terrors which I have before touched, [] there is a superstitious fear [] which much trouble many of us.
    3. (intransitive) To deal with in speech or writing; briefly to speak or write (on or upon something). [from 14th c.]
    4. (transitive) To concern, to have to do with. [14th-19th c.]
      • 1526, William Tyndale, trans. Bible, Acts V:
        Men of Israhell take hede to youreselves what ye entende to do as touchinge these men.
      • 1898, Winston Churchill, chapter 1, in The Celebrity:
        The stories did not seem to me to touch life. They were plainly intended to have a bracing moral effect, and perhaps had this result for the people at whom they were aimed. They left me with the impression of a well-delivered stereopticon lecture, with characters about as life-like as the shadows on the screen, and whisking on and off, at the mercy of the operator.
      • 1919, Saki, ‘The Penance’, The Toys of Peace, Penguin 2000 (Complete Short Stories), page 423:
        And now it seemed he was engaged in something which touched them closely, but must be hidden from their knowledge.
    5. (transitive) To affect emotionally; to bring about tender or painful feelings in. [from 14th c.]
      Stefan was touched by the song's message of hope.
    6. (transitive, dated) To affect in a negative way, especially only slightly. [from 16th c.]
      He had been drinking over lunch, and was clearly touched.
    7. (transitive, Scottish history) To give royal assent to by touching it with the sceptre. [from 17th c.]
      The bill was finally touched after many hours of deliberation.
    8. (transitive, slang) To obtain money from, usually by borrowing (from a friend). [from 18th c.]
      I was running short, so I touched old Bertie for a fiver.
    9. (transitive, always passive) To disturb the mental functions of; to make somewhat insane; often followed with "in the head". [from 18th c.]
      You must be touched if you think I'm taking your advice.
    10. (transitive) To be on the level of; to approach in excellence or quality. [from 19th c.]
    11. (transitive, computing) To mark (a file or document) as having been modified.
  3. To try; to prove, as with a touchstone.
  4. To mark or delineate with touches; to add a slight stroke to with the pencil or brush.
    • Alexander Pope (1688-1744)
      The lines, though touched but faintly, are drawn right.
  5. (obsolete) To infect; to affect slightly.
    (Can we find and add a quotation of Francis Bacon to this entry?)
  6. To strike; to manipulate; to play on.
    to touch an instrument of music
    • John Milton (1608-1674)
      [They] touched their golden harps.
  7. To perform, as a tune; to play.
    • Sir Walter Scott (1771-1832)
      A person in the royal retinue touched a light and lively air on the flageolet.
  8. To influence by impulse; to impel forcibly.
    • John Milton (1608-1674)
      No decree of mine, [] [to] touch with lightest moment of impulse his free will.

Derived terms

Translations

Noun

touch (countable and uncountable, plural touches)

  1. An act of touching, especially with the hand or finger.
    Suddenly, in the crowd, I felt a touch at my shoulder.
  2. The faculty or sense of perception by physical contact.
    With the lights out, she had to rely on touch to find her desk.
  3. The style or technique with which one plays a musical instrument.
    He performed one of Ravel's piano concertos with a wonderfully light and playful touch.
  4. A distinguishing feature or characteristic.
    Clever touches like this are what make her such a brilliant writer.
  5. A little bit; a small amount.
    Move it left just a touch and it will be perfect.
    • Shakespeare
      Madam, I have a touch of your condition.
  6. The part of a sports field beyond the touchlines or goal-lines.
    He got the ball, and kicked it straight out into touch.
  7. A relationship of close communication or understanding.
    He promised to keep in touch while he was away.
  8. The ability to perform a task well; aptitude.
    I used to be a great chess player but I've lost my touch.
    • 2011 September 29, Jon Smith, “Tottenham 3 - 1 Shamrock Rovers”, in BBC Sport:
      Rovers' hopes of pulling off one of the great European shocks of all time lasted just 10 minutes before Spurs finally found their scoring touch.
  9. (obsolete) Act or power of exciting emotion.
    • Shakespeare
      Not alone / The death of Fulvia, with more urgent touches, / Do strongly speak to us.
  10. (obsolete) An emotion or affection.
    • Hooker
      a true, natural, and a sensible touch of mercy
  11. (obsolete) Personal reference or application.
    • Francis Bacon
      Speech of touch toward others should be sparingly used.
  12. A single stroke on a drawing or a picture.
    • Dryden
      Never give the least touch with your pencil till you have well examined your design.
  13. (obsolete) A brief essay.
    • Jonathan Swift
      Print my preface in such form as, in the booksellers' phrase, will make a sixpenny touch.
  14. (obsolete) A touchstone; hence, stone of the sort used for touchstone.
    • Shakespeare
      Now do I play the touch.
    • Fuller
      a neat new monument of touch and alabaster
  15. (obsolete) Examination or trial by some decisive standard; test; proof; tried quality.
    • Carew
      equity, the true touch of all laws
    • Shakespeare
      friends of noble touch
  16. (music) The particular or characteristic mode of action, or the resistance of the keys of an instrument to the fingers.
    a heavy touch, or a light touch
  17. (shipbuilding) The broadest part of a plank worked top and but, or of one worked anchor-stock fashion (that is, tapered from the middle to both ends); also, the angles of the stern timbers at the counters.
    (Can we find and add a quotation of J. Knowles to this entry?)
  18. The children's game of tag.
  19. (bell-ringing) A set of changes less than the total possible on seven bells, i.e. less than 5,040.
  20. (slang) An act of borrowing or stealing something.
  21. (Britain, plumbing, dated) tallow

Derived terms

Translations

Statistics

Most common English words before 1923: running · garden · domain · #888: touch · higher · military · passage

Anagrams