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Sign, subst. 1) a distinguishing mark: “we, following the --s, wooed but the s. of she,” LLL V, 2, 469. “though he does bear some --s of me, yet you have too much blood in him,” Wint. II, 1, 57. “leaving me no s. to show the world I am a gentleman,” R2 III, 1, 25. “the s. of your profession,” Caes. I, 1, 4. “--s of nobleness, like stars, shall shine on all deservers,” Mcb. I, 4, 41. “render to me some corporal s. about her,” Cymb. II, 4, 119. Especially a figure distinguishing a house (the custom of numbering houses being of a recent date): Ado I, 1, 256. Ado I, 1, 256 H4A I, 2, 9. H4B II, 4, 271. H6B III, 2, 81. V, 2, 67. R3 III, 5, 79. Tit. IV, 2, 98. Per. IV, 2, 124. Figuratively == something of a deceptive semblance, not answering the promise: “before these bastard --s of fair were born,” Sonn. 68, 3. “she's but the s. and semblance of her honour,” Ado IV, 1, 34. “wooed but the s. of she,” LLL V, 2, 469. “a s. of dignity, a garish flag,” R3 IV, 4, 89. “which is indeed but s.” Oth. I, 1, 158. “she's a good s.” Cymb. I, 2, 33.
2) that by which something is shown or perceived; a) an external proof or evidence: “sawest thou not --s of fear lurk in mine eye?” Ven. 644. “such --s of rage they bear,” Lucr. 1419. Lucr. 1419 Pilgr. 429. Gent. III, 2, 18. Ado II, 3, 236. III, 2, 41. Shr. V, 2, 117. Wint. V, 2, 95. John III, 1, 24. R2 V, 5, 65. H6A V, 4, 82. H6B I, 1, 18. III, 2, 178. III, 2, 178 III, 3, 5. IV, 2, 22. H8 III, 1, 66. Cor. I, 9, 26 “(in s. of what you are).” IV, 6, 153. Tit. V, 3, 77. Cymb. III, 4, 128. b) a symbol: “in s. whereof . . . we may quaff carouses,” Shr. I, 2, 275. “in sign whereof I pluck a white rose,” H6A II, 4, 58. III, 4, 5. V, 3, 162. H6C IV, 2, 9. IV, 8, 26. R3 I, 3, 281. Ant. V, 2, 135. Hence --s of war == ensigns: H5 II, 2, 192. Caes. V, 1, 14. cf. Oth. I, 1, 157. “with --s of war about his aged neck,” R2 II, 2, 74*(== in armour). c) a prognostic: “apparitions, --s and prodigies,” Ven. 926. “she at these sad --s draws up her breath,” Ven. 926 LLL I, 2, 1. LLL I, 2, 1 John III, 4, 157. R2 II, 4, 15. H4A III, 1, 41. H6A V, 3, 4. H6C V, 6, 44. Tit. II, 3, 37. Mcb. IV, 2, 62. Ant. IV, 14, 7. d) a nod, a gesture, any motion to intimate one's meaning: Shr. IV, 4, 80. John IV, 2, 237. Tit. II, 4, 5. III, 1, 143. III, 2, 12. III, 2, 12 IV, 1, 8. “give --s,” IV, 1, 8 “gave s. for me to leave you,” Caes. II, 1, 247. “make a s.” H6B III, 3, 29. Tit. III, 1, 121. III, 2, 43. e) a signal: H6A II, 1, 3. III, 2, 8.
3) a constellation in the zodiac: “the twelve celestial --s,” LLL V, 2, 807.
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