Dictionary: BAR'TER – BASE

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BAR'TER, v.i. [Sp. baratar; It. barattare, to exchange. The primary sense is probably to turn or change, and this gives the sense of deceiving, barratry, as well as of bartering. L. vario, verto. Class Br.]

To traffick or trade, by exchanging one commodity for another, in distinction from a sale and purchase, in which money is paid for the commodities transferred.

BAR'TER, v.t.

To give one thing for another in commerce. It is sometimes followed by away; as, to barter inlay goods or honor.


Given in exchange.


One who trafficks by exchange of commodities.


Trafficking or trading by an exchange of commodities.


Exchange of commodities in trade. [Not used.] – Camden.


The term near St. Bartholomew's day. – Shak.

BAR'TON, n. [Sax. bere-ton, barley-town.]

The demain lands of a manor; the manor itself; and sometimes the out-houses. – Johnson. Blount.

BAR'TRAM, n. [L. pyrethrum; Gr. πυρ, fire.]

A plant; pellitory. – Bailey. Johnson.

BAR-Y-STRON'TI-AN-ITE, n. [Gr. βαρυς, heavy, and strontian.]

A mineral, called also Stromnite, from Stromness, in Orkney. It has been found in masses of a grayish white color internally, but externally of a yellowish white. – Traill. Cleaveland. Phillips.

BAR'Y-TA, or BAR'Y-TES, n. [Gr. βαρυς, heavy; βαρυτης, weight.]

Ponderous earth; so called from its great weight, it being the heaviest of the earths. Spec. grav. about 4. Recent discoveries have shown that baryta is an oxyd, the basis of which is a metallic substance called barytum. It is generally found in combination with the sulphuric and carbonic acids, forming the sulphate and carbonate of baryta, the former of which is called heavy spar. – Cleaveland. Thomson.


Pertaining to beryta; formed of baryta, or containing it. – Kirwan.

BAR'Y-TO-CAL'CITE, n. [baryte and calx. See Calx.]

A mixture of carbonate of lime with sulphate of baryta, of a dark or light gray color, of various forms. – Kirwan.

BAR'Y-TONE, a. [Gr. βαρυς, heavy, and τονος, tone.]

Pertaining to or noting a grave deep sound, or male voice. – Walker. Arbuthnot.


  1. In music, a male voice, the compass of which partakes of the common base and the tenor, but which does not descend so low as the one, nor rise as high as the other.
  2. In Greek grammar, a verb which has no accent marked on the last syllable, the grave accent being understood.


A metal, the basis of baryta.

BA'SAL, a.

Pertaining to the base; constituting the base. – Say.

BA-SALT', n. [bazalt'; Pliny informs us that the Egyptians found in Ethiopia, a species of marble, called basaltes, of an iron color and hardness, whence it received its name. Nat. Hist. lib. 36, ca. 7. But according to Da Costa, that stone was not the same which now bears the name of basalt. Hist. of Fossils, p. 263. If named from its color, it may be allied to the Fr. basané, tawny. Lunier refers it to the Ethiopic basal, iron, a word I cannot find.]

A dark, grayish black mineral or stone, sometimes bluish or brownish black, and when weathered, the surface is grayish or reddish brown. It is amorphous, columnar, tabular or globular. The columnar form is straight or curved, perpendicular or inclined, sometimes nearly horizontal; the diameter of the columns from three inches to three feet, sometimes with transverse semispherical joints, in which the convex part of one is inserted in the concavity of another. The forms of the columns generally are pentagonal, hexagonal, or octagonal. It is sometimes found also in rounded masses, either spherical, or compressed and lenticular. These rounded masses are sometimes composed of concentric layers, with a nucleus, and sometimes of prisms radiating from center. It is heavy and hard. The pillars of the Giant's Causey in Ireland, composed of this stone, and exposed to the roughest sea for ages, have their angles as perfect as those at a distance from the waves. The English miners call it cockle; the German, shorl, or shœrl. It is called by Kirwan, Figurate Trap, from its prismatic forms. – Kirwan. Jameson. Cleaveland.


Pertaining to basalt; formed of or containing basalt.


In the form of basalt; columnar.


  1. Basaltic hornblend; a variety of common hornblend, so called from its being often found in basalt. It is also found in lavas and volcanic scoriæ. It is generally in distinct crystals, and its color is a pure black, or slightly tinged with green. It is more foliated than the other varieties, and has been mistaken for mica. – Kirwan. Cleaveland.
  2. A column of basalt. – Kirwan.

BAS'AN-ITE, n. [s as z. Gr. βασανος, the trier. Plin. lib. 36, ca. 22. See Basalt.]

Lydian stone, or black jasper; a variety of silicious or flinty slate. Its color is a grayish or bluish black, interspersed with veins of quartz. It is employed to test the purity of gold. – Kirwan. Ure. Cleaveland.

BASE, a. [Fr. bas, low; W. bas; It. basso; Sp. baxo, low; W. basu, to fall, or lower. See Abase.]

  1. Low in place. [Obs.] – Spenser.
  2. Mean; vile; worthless; that is, low in value or estimation; used of things.
  3. Of low station; of mean account; without rank, dignity or estimation among men; used of persons. The base shall behave proudly against the honorable. Is. iii.
  4. Of mean spirit; disingenuous; illiberal; low; without dignity of sentiment; as, a base and abject multitude.
  5. Of little comparative value; applied to metals, and perhaps to all metals, except gold and silver.
  6. Deep; grave; applied to sounds; as, the base sounds of a viol. – Bacon.
  7. Of illegitimate birth; born out of wedlock. – Shak.
  8. Not held by honorable tenure. A base estate is an estate held by services not honorable, nor in capite, or by villenage. Such a tenure is called base, or low, and the tenant, a base tenant. So writers on the laws of England use the terms, a base fee, a base court. – Encyc.

BASE, n. [Gr. βασις; L. basis; It. basa, base; Sp. basa; Fr. base; that which is set, the foundation or bottom.]

  1. The bottom of any thing, considered as its support or the part of a thing on which it stands or rests; as, the base of a column, the pedestal of a statue, the foundation of a house, &c. In architecture, the base of a pillar properly, is that part which is between the top of a pedestal and the bottom of the shaft; but when there is no pedestal, it is the part between the bottom of the column and the plinth. Usually it consists of certain spires or circles. The pedestal also has its base. – Encyc.
  2. In fortification, the exterior side of the polygon, or that imaginary line which is drawn from the flanked angle of a bastion to the angle opposite to it.
  3. In gunnery, the least sort of ordnance, the diameter of whose bore is 1 1/4 inch. – Encyc.
  4. The part of any ornament which hangs down; as housings. – Sidney.
  5. The broad part of any thing, as the bottom of a cone.
  6. In old authors, stockings; armor for the legs. – Hudibras.
  7. The place from which racers or tilters start; the bottom of the field; the career or starting post. – Dryden.
  8. The lowest or gravest part in music; improperly written bass.
  9. A rustic play, called also bays, or prison bars. – Shak.
  10. In geometry, the lowest side of the perimeter of a figure. Any side of a triangle may be called its base, but this term most properly belongs to the side which is parallel to the horizon. In rectangled triangles, the base, properly, is the side opposite to the right angle. The base of a solid figure is that on which it stands. The base of a conic section is a right line in the hyperbola and parabola, arising from the common intersection of the secant plane and the base of the cone. – Encyc.
  11. In chimistry, the electro-positive ingredient in a compound. Thus any alkaline or earthy substance, combining with an acid, forms a compound or salt, of which it is the base. Such salts, are called salts with alkaline or earthy bases.
  12. Thorough base, in music, is the part performed with base viols or theorbos, while the voices sing and other instruments perform their parts, or during the intervals when the other parts stop. It is distinguished by figures over the notes.
  13. Counter base is a second or double base, when there are several in the same concert. – Encyc.
  14. In botany, the base of the fruit is the part where it is united with the peduncle. – Lindley.

BASE, v.t.

  1. To embase; to reduce the value by the admixture of meaner metals. [Little used.] – Bacon.
  2. To found; to lay the base or foundation. To base and build the commonwealth of man. – Columbiad.