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Absolute, 1) unconditional, complete, perfect: “no perfection is so a.” Lucr. 853. “he needs will be a. Milan,” Tp. I, 2, 109 (not only in name, or partly, but perfectly). “I have delivered to Lord Angelo my a. power and place here in Vienna,” Meas. I, 3, 13 (without restriction). “pardon a. for yourself,” H4A IV, 3, 50. “upon such large terms and so a.” H4B IV, 1, 186 (unlimited, unconditional). “there the people had more a. power,” Cor. III, 1, 116. Tim. V, 1, 165. Lr. V, 3, 300. “on whom I built an a. trust,” Mcb. I, 4, 14. “I speak not as in a. fear of you,” IV, 3, 38 (in unqualified fear, unallayed by the hope that you may be honest). “my soul hath her content so a.” Oth. II, 1, 193. “I do love her, not out of a. lust, but partly led to diet my revenge,” Oth. II, 1, 193 “by sea he is an a. master,” Ant. II, 2, 166. “made her of lower Syria a. queen,” III, 6, 11 (no more a vassal, but a sovereign). “to you the tribunes he commends his a. commission,” Cymb. III, 7, 10 (with full authority). “not a. madness could so far have raved,” IV, 2, 135.
2) positive, certain, decided, not doubtful: a) of persons: “be a. for death,” Meas. III, 1, 5 (expect it with certainty, be sure to receive no pardon). “you are too a.” Cor. III, 2, 39.* “how a. the knave is!” Hml. V, 1, 148. “I am a. 'twas very Cloten,” Cymb. IV, 2, 106. “how a. she's in it,” Per. II, 5, 19. -- b) of things: “mark you his a. Shall?” Cor. III, 1, 90. “with an a. 'Sir, not I',” Mcb. III, 6, 40. “I have an a. hope,” Ant. IV, 3, 10.
3) highly accomplished, faultless, perfect: “thou wouldst make an a. courtier,” Wiv. III, 3, 66. “as grave, as just, as a. as Angelo,” Meas. V, 54. “a most a. and excellent horse,” H5 III, 7, 27. “an a. gentleman,” Hml. V, 2, 111. “the a. soldiership you have by land,” Ant. III, 7, 43. a. Marina, Per. Ant. III, 7, 43. Preceded by most, it serves as an appellation expressing the highest veneration: “most a. Sir,” Cor. IV, 5, 142. “most a. lord,” Ant. IV, 14, 117. Jestingly: “almost most a. Alexas,” Ant. I, 2, 2.
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hide References (11 total)
  • Cross-references in text-specific dictionaries from this page (11):
    • William Shakespeare, Anthony and Cleopatra, 2.2
    • William Shakespeare, Anthony and Cleopatra, 3.6
    • William Shakespeare, Coriolanus, 3.1
    • William Shakespeare, Macbeth, 1.4
    • William Shakespeare, Macbeth, 4.3
    • William Shakespeare, King Lear, 5.3
    • William Shakespeare, Cymbeline, 3.7
    • William Shakespeare, Cymbeline, 4.2
    • William Shakespeare, The First Part of Henry IV, 4.3
    • William Shakespeare, The Tempest, 1.2
    • William Shakespeare, The Rape of Lucrece
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