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Subject, subst. 1) one under the dominion of another: Ven. 1045. Lucr. 616. Lucr. 616 Tp. I, 2, 341 “(I am all the --s that you have).” II, 1, 165. II, 2, 131. II, 2, 131 III, 2, 41. V, 167. Gent. II, 6, 8. Meas. V, 317. Err. II, 1, 19. Ado III, 3, 33. Ado III, 3, 33 Merch. III, 2, 49. Shr. V, 2, 155. H6A III, 1, 182. IV, 1, 166. IV, 2, 7. V, 4, 160. H6B I, 3, 52 “(to).” II, 2, 8. IV, 9, 5. IV, 9, 5 H6C III, 1, 70. H6C III, 1, 70 H6C III, 1, 70 R3 IV, 4, 356. Lr. V, 3, 60 (I hold you but a s. of this war, not as a brother; i. e. one who ought to obey, not to command). Ant. I, 3, 92 (your royalty holds idleness your s.) etc. etc.
2) the people under the dominion of a sovereign: “the general s. to a well-wished king quit their own part,” Meas. II, 4, 27 (M. Edd. the general, s.). “the greater file of the s. held the duke to be wise,” III, 2, 145. “let the s. see, to make them know . . .,” V, 14. “one that indeed physics the s., makes old hearts fresh,” Wint. I, 1, 43. “why this watch so nightly toils the s. of the land,” Hml. I, 1, 72. “the levies . . . are all made out of his s.” I, 2, 33. “how from the finny s. of the sea these fishers tell the infirmities of men,” Per. II, 1, 52. cf. also H6B IV, 1, 82.
3) creature, being; that which is in existence: our very priests must become mockers, if they shall encounter “such ridiculous --s as you are,” Cor. II, 1, 94. “that heaven should practise stratagems upon so soft a s. as myself,” Rom. III, 5, 212 (perhaps collectively in Per. II, 1, 52; see sub 2). Hence the following expression: “thoughts are no --s; intents but merely thoughts,” Meas. V, 458; i. e. thoughts are no real, existing things.
4) he who, or that which, is exposed or liable to something: “have I scaped love-letters in the holiday-time of my beauty, and am I now a s. for them?” Wiv. II, 1, 3. “leaves his part-created cost a naked s. to the weeping clouds,” H4B I, 3, 61. “we are time's --s, and time bids be gone,” H4B I, 3, 61 “to be shame's scorn and s. of mischance,” H6A IV, 6, 49. “I am too mean a s. for thy wrath,” H6C I, 3, 19. “live each of you the --s to his hate,” R3 I, 3, 302. “proved the s. of my own soul's curse,” IV, 1, 81. “beauty, wit, high birth, . . . are --s all to envious and calumniating time,” Troil. III, 3, 173.
5) that which is spoken or thought or treated of; theme, argument: “how can my Muse want s. to invent,” Sonn. 38, 1. “the wits of former days to --s worse have given admiring praise,” 59, 14. 82, 4. 84, 6. 100, 4. 103, 10. Meas. II, 4, 2. Err. V, 65. Ado V, 1, 137. LLL I, 2, 120. V, 2, 774. H6C III, 2, 91. H6C III, 2, 91. Tim. IV, 3, 272. Caes. I, 2, 92.
6) he who, or that which, is the cause or occasion of something: “I am the unhappy s. of these quarrels,” Merch. V, 238. “I could be sad. Very hardly upon such a s.” H4B II, 2, 47. “I cannot fight upon this argument; it is too starved a s. for my sword,” Troil. I, 1, 96. “none so noble whose life were ill bestowed or death unfamed where Helen is the s.” II, 2, 160. the dry serpigo on the s. (of the quarrel) II, 3, 81. “near approaches the s. of our watch,” Mcb. III, 3, 8.
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