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Webster 1913 Edition


Property

Prop′er-ty

,
Noun.
;
pl.
Properties
(#)
.
[OE.
proprete
, OF.
propreté
property, F.
propreté
neatness, cleanliness,
propriété
property, fr. L.
proprietas
. See
Proper
,
Adj.
, and cf.
Propriety
.]
1.
That which is proper to anything; a peculiar quality of a thing; that which is inherent in a subject, or naturally essential to it; an attribute;
as, sweetness is a
property
of sugar
.
Property
is correctly a synonym for peculiar quality; but it is frequently used as coextensive with quality in general.
Sir W. Hamilton.
☞ In physical science, the properties of matter are distinguished to the three following classes: 1. Physical properties, or those which result from the relations of bodies to the physical agents, light, heat, electricity, gravitation, cohesion, adhesion, etc., and which are exhibited without a change in the composition or kind of matter acted on. They are color, luster, opacity, transparency, hardness, sonorousness, density, crystalline form, solubility, capability of osmotic diffusion, vaporization, boiling, fusion, etc. 2. Chemical properties, or those which are conditioned by affinity and composition; thus, combustion, explosion, and certain solutions are reactions occasioned by chemical properties. Chemical properties are identical when there is identity of composition and structure, and change according as the composition changes. 3. Organoleptic properties, or those forming a class which can not be included in either of the other two divisions. They manifest themselves in the contact of substances with the organs of taste, touch, and smell, or otherwise affect the living organism, as in the manner of medicines and poisons.
2.
An acquired or artificial quality; that which is given by art, or bestowed by man;
as, the poem has the
properties
which constitute excellence
.
3.
The exclusive right of possessing, enjoying, and disposing of a thing; ownership; title.
Here I disclaim all my paternal care,
Propinquity and
property
of blood.
Shakespeare
Shall man assume a
property
in man?
Wordsworth.
4.
That to which a person has a legal title, whether in his possession or not; thing owned; an estate, whether in lands, goods, or money;
as, a man of large
property
, or small
property
.
5.
pl.
All the adjuncts of a play except the scenery and the dresses of the actors; stage requisites.
I will draw a bill of
properties
.
Shakespeare
6.
Propriety; correctness.
[Obs.]
Camden.
Literary property
.
(Law)
See under
Literary
.
Property man
,
one who has charge of the “properties” of a theater.

Prop′er-ty

,
Verb.
T.
1.
To invest which properties, or qualities.
[Obs.]
Shak.
2.
To make a property of; to appropriate.
[Obs.]
They have here
propertied
me.
Shakespeare

Webster 1828 Edition


Property

PROP'ERTY

,
Noun.
[This seems to be formed directly from proper. The Latin is proprietas.]
1.
A peculiar quality of any thing; that which is inherent in a subject, or naturally essential to it; called by logicians an essential mode. Thus color is a property of light; extension and figure are properties of bodies.
2.
An acquired or artificial quality; that which is given by art or bestowed by man. The poem has the properties which constitute excellence.
3.
Quality; disposition.
It is the property of an old sinner to find delight in reviewing his own villainies in others.
4.
The exclusive right of possessing, enjoying and disposing of a thing; ownership. In the beginning of the world, the Creator gave to man dominion over the earth, over the fish of the sea and the fowls of the air, and over every living thing. This is the foundation of man's property in the earth and in all its productions. Prior occupancy of land and of wild animals gives to the possessor the property of them. The labor of inventing, making or producing any thing constitutes one of the highest and most indefeasible titles to property. Property is also acquired by inheritance, by gift or by purchase. Property is sometimes held in common, yet each man's right to his share in common land or stock is exclusively his own. One man may have the property of the soil,and another the right of use, by prescription or by purchase.
5.
Possession held on one's own right.
6.
The thing owned; that to which a person has the legal title, whether in his possession or not. It is one of the greatest blessings of civil society that the property of citizens is well secured.
7.
An estate, whether in lands, goods or money; as a man of large property or small property.
8.
An estate; a farm; a plantation. In this sense, which is common in the United States and in the West Indies, the word has a plural.
The still-houses on the sugar plantations, vary in size, according to the fancy of the proprietor or the magnitude of the property.
I shall confine myself to such properties as fall within the reach of daily observation.
9.
Nearness or right.
Here I disclaim all my paternal care,
Propinquity and property of blood.
10. Something useful; an appendage; a theatrical term.
I will draw a bill of properties.
High pomp and state are useful properties.
11. Propriety. [Not in use.]
Literary property, the exclusive right of printing, publishing and making profit by one's own writings. No right or title to a thing can be so perfect as that which is created by a man's own labor and invention. The exclusive right of a man to his literary productions, and to the use of them for his own profit, is entire and perfect, as the faculties employed and labor bestowed are entirely and perfectly his own. On what principle then can a legislature or a court determine that an author can enjoy only a temporary property in his own productions? If a man's right to his own productions in writing is as perfect as to the productions of his farm or his shop, how can the former by abridged or limited, while the latter is held without limitation? Why do the productions of manual labor rank higher in the scale of rights or property, than the productions of the intellect?

PROP'ERTY

,
Verb.
T.
To invest with qualities, or to take as one's own; to appropriate. [An awkward word and not used.]

Definition 2022


property

property

English

Alternative forms

Noun

property (countable and uncountable, plural properties)

  1. Something that is owned.
    Leave those books alone! They are my property.
    Important types of property include real property (land), personal property (other physical possessions), and intellectual property (rights over artistic creations, inventions, etc.).
    • 1927, F. E. Penny, chapter 4, in Pulling the Strings:
      A turban and loincloth soaked in blood had been found; also a staff. These properties were known to have belonged to a toddy drawer. He had disappeared.
  2. A piece of real estate, such as a parcel of land.
    There is a large house on the property.
  3. Real estate; the business of selling houses.
    He works in property as a housing consultant.
  4. The exclusive right of possessing, enjoying and disposing of a thing.
  5. An attribute or abstract quality associated with an individual, object or concept.
    Charm is his most endearing property.
  6. An attribute or abstract quality which is characteristic of a class of objects.
    Matter can have many properties, including color, mass and density.
    • 2013 July-August, Lee S. Langston, The Adaptable Gas Turbine”, in American Scientist:
      Turbines have been around for a long time—windmills and water wheels are early examples. The name comes from the Latin turbo, meaning vortex, and thus the defining property of a turbine is that a fluid or gas turns the blades of a rotor, which is attached to a shaft that can perform useful work.
  7. (computing) An editable or read-only parameter associated with an application, component or class, or the value of such a parameter.
    You need to set the debugging property to "verbose".
  8. (usually in the plural, theater) A prop, an object used in a dramatic production.
    Costumes and scenery are distinguished from property properly speaking.
  9. (obsolete) Propriety; correctness.
    (Can we find and add a quotation of Camden to this entry?)

Synonyms

Derived terms

Related terms

Translations

Verb

property (third-person singular simple present properties, present participle propertying, simple past and past participle propertied)

  1. (obsolete) To invest with properties, or qualities.
    (Can we find and add a quotation of Shakespeare to this entry?)
  2. (obsolete) To make a property of; to appropriate.
    • Shakespeare 
      Your grace shall pardon me, I will not back:
      I am too high-born to be propertied,
      To be a secondary at control,
      Or useful serving-man and instrument,
      To any sovereign state throughout the world.[1]

Statistics

Most common English words before 1923: York · impossible · greatest · #740: property · started · respect · that's
  1. 1595 SHAKES. John V. ii. 79, l. 2359 - 2362