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Master, subst. (sometimes maister in O. Edd., f. i. Merch. II, 2, 34. H6B IV, 1, 12. Tit. V, 1, 15. Rom. II, 4, 11. Sometimes, before names or titles, abbreviated to “M.:” Wiv. II, 2, 48. II, 3, 39. II, 3, 39 II, 3, 39 II, 3, 39 76 etc. LLL V, 2, 84. LLL V, 2, 84 H8 V, 3, 1. H8 V, 3, 1 V, 4, 4. or to “Mr.:” Wiv. II, 3, 19. Wiv. II, 3, 19 Meas. II, 1, 223. IV, 3, 5. IV, 3, 5 IV, 3, 5 23 etc. Err. III, 2, 170), 1) one who has possession and power of controlling and using; owner, proprietor, ruler, governor: “m. of a full poor cell,” Tp. I, 2, 20. “the --s of some merchant,” II, 1, 5 (i. e. the owners of some trading ship). “a man is m. of his liberty,” Err. II, 1, 7. “he's m. of my state,” Err. II, 1, 7 “when thou didst make him m. of thy bed,” V, 163. “affections, --s of passion,” Merch. IV, 1, 51. “the cottage that the old carlot once was m. of,” As III, 5, 108. lest it (the dagger) “should bite its m.” Wint. I, 2, 157; cf. H4A I, 1, 18. “--s of their wealth,” II, 4, 280. “though most m. wear no breeches,” H6B I, 3, 149. “m. of his heart,” Troil. I, 1, 4. “--s of the field,” V, 10, 1. “--s of their fates,” Caes. I, 2, 139. “let every man be m. of his time,” Mcb. III, 1, 41. “the safer sense will ne'er accommodate his m. thus,” Lr. IV, 6, 82. “by sea he is an absolute m.” Ant. II, 2, 166. “I am the m. of my speeches,” Cymb. I, 4, 152. “you are m. of the feast,” III, 6, 29 etc. Applied to a female: “but now I was the lord of this fair mansion, m. of my servants,” Merch. III, 2, 170. Peculiar passage: “by whose aid, weak --s though ye be, I have bedimmed the noontide sun,” Tp. V, 41 (i. e. according to Blackstone: ye are powerful auxiliaries, but weak if left to yourselves).
2) the founder or chief of a sect or doctrine: “so Judas kissed his m.” H6C V, 7, 33. ween you of better luck than your m. (Christ) H8 V, 1, 137. cf. “tell me, love's m.” Ven. 585 (or == lord of the queen of love?).
3) one of perfect skill in an art or science: “that rare Italian m.” Wint. V, 2, 105. “he is not his craft's m.” H4B III, 2, 297. “each following day became the next day's m.” H8 I, 1, 17. “till by some elder --s, of known honour, I have a voice and precedent of peace,” Hml. V, 2, 259. “you are music's m.” Per. II, 5, 30. “a m. of fence,” Wiv. I, 1, 295 ("not merely a fencingmaster, but a person who had taken his master's degree in the science. There were three degrees, a master's, a provost's, and a scholar's." Steevens). “he will answer the letters' m.” Rom. II, 4, 11 (or letter's m. == writer of the letter?).
4) chief, head, leader: “being then appointed m. of this design,” Tp. I, 2, 163. “the m. of the cross-bows,” H5 IV, 8, 99. great m. of France, 100 (grand maître de la maison du roi). “m. of the jewel house,” H8 IV, 1, 110. “m. o'the rolls,” V, 1, 34. --s of the people (viz the tribunes) Cor. II, 2, 55. Cor. II, 2, 55 “bees led by their m.” Tit. V, 1, 15. Used of the commander of a merchant ship, and of a subordinate officer in ships of war: Tp. I, 1, 2. Tp. I, 1, 2 Tp. I, 1, 2 Tp. I, 1, 2 II, 2, 48. V, 99. V, 99 H6B IV, 1, 12. H6B IV, 1, 12 Mcb. I, 3, 7. Oth. II, 1, 211. Per. IV, 1, 65.
Adjectively, == chief, principal: “the m. cord on's heart,” H8 III, 2, 106. “choice and m. spirits,” Caes. III, 1, 163. “the m. and main exercise,” Oth. II, 1, 268. “she has me her quirks, her reasons, her m. reasons,” Per. IV, 6, 8.
5) a teacher: Pilgr. 212. Pilgr. 212 Wiv. IV, 1, 9. Wiv. IV, 1, 9 H4B II, 1, 202. Per. II, 5, 38.
6) opposed to servant, one who has the command of another: Tp. I, 2, 189. Tp. I, 2, 189 Tp. I, 2, 189 Tp. I, 2, 189 Tp. I, 2, 189 II, 1, 297. II, 2, 182. II, 2, 182 III, 2, 124. IV, 1, 34. V, 262. Gent. I, 1, 39. Gent. I, 1, 39 Gent. I, 1, 39 IV, 1, 39. Wiv. I, 1, 164. Err. II, 1, 20. Err. II, 1, 20 LLL I, 2, 26. LLL I, 2, 26 LLL I, 2, 26 Alls II, 3, 194. Alls II, 3, 194 Alls II, 3, 194 Alls II, 3, 194 IV, 5, 75. Tw. I, 5, 271. Tw. I, 5, 271 Mcb. I, 3, 101 etc. etc.
7) a familiar title of respect: “mistress and m., you have oft inquired,” As III, 4, 50. “a plum-tree, m.” H6B II, 1, 97. “good m.” H6B II, 1, 97 “come on, young m.” Lr. II, 2, 49. “bless thee, m.” IV, 1, 41. “--s, let him go,” Err. IV, 4, 114. “well, --s,” Ado III, 3, 90. Ado III, 3, 90 Ado III, 3, 90 Ado III, 3, 90 IV, 2, 18. V, 1, 232. V, 3, 24. V, 3, 24 Mids. I, 2, 16. Mids. I, 2, 16 III, 1, 30. III, 1, 30 IV, 2, 15. IV, 2, 15 Shr. I, 2, 189. Cor. V, 6, 135. Caes. III, 2, 115. Caes. III, 2, 115 Hml. II, 2, 440. Oth. II, 3, 176. V, 2, 188 etc. “my --s,” Shr. I, 2, 238. Tw. II, 3, 93. H4A II, 2, 80. II, 4, 550. H6A I, 1, 152. III, 1, 144. H6B I, 3, 1. I, 4, 1. II, 1, 72. II, 1, 72 H6C IV, 3, 24. Tit. IV, 3, 35. “my noble --s,” Cor. V, 6, 133. “my very noble and approved good --s,” Oth. I, 3, 77. Placed, in courtesy, before names: Wiv. I, 1, 46. Wiv. I, 1, 46 II, 3, 39. Meas. II, 1, 104. Meas. II, 1, 104 Meas. II, 1, 104 Meas. II, 1, 104 Meas. II, 1, 104 IV, 3, 5. IV, 3, 5 IV, 3, 5 IV, 3, 5 Err. III, 2, 170. IV, 3, 45. LLL I, 2, 167. Mids. III, 1, 186. Mids. III, 1, 186 Mids. III, 1, 186 As III, 2, 12. H4A II, 1, 58. H4B II, 1, 191. H6A II, 4, 43. 128 etc. etc. Before titles: “m. parson,” Wiv. I, 1, 9. I, 4, 34. III, 1, 36. LLL IV, 2, 84. Tw. IV, 2, 13. “m. doctor,” Wiv. I, 4, 3. II, 2, 48. II, 3, 19. Err. IV, 4, 125. Cymb. I, 5, 4. “m. guest,” Wiv. II, 3, 76. “m. tapster,” Meas. II, 1, 223. “m. constable,” Meas. II, 1, 272. Ado III, 3, 17. Ado III, 3, 17 IV, 2, 8. IV, 2, 8 “m. schoolmaster,” LLL IV, 2, 87. “m. young-man,” Merch. II, 2, 34. “m. Jew,” Merch. II, 2, 34 “m. sheriff,” H4A II, 4, 555. H6B II, 4, 74. “m. lieutenant,” H6C IV, 6, 1. R3 IV, 1, 13. “m. mayor,” H6C IV, 7, 20. “peace, m. marquess,” R3 I, 3, 255. “m. secretary,” H8 V, 3, 1. H8 V, 3, 1 “good m. porter,” V, 4, 4. “m. steward,” Tim. IV, 2, 1 etc. Dogberry and Verges strain their courtesy to saying: “m. gentleman Conrade; here comes m. Signior Leonato,” Ado IV, 2, 17. V, 1, 266.
Peculiar phrase: “we'll be thy good --s,” Wint. V, 2, 188; it being a common petitionary phrase to ask a superior to be good lord or good master to the supplicant. cf. “from my lord Biron, a good m. of mine,” LLL IV, 1, 106 (== wellwisher, patron).
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