Dictionary: O-PEN – OP-ER-A'TION

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O-PEN, v.i. [o'pn.]

  1. To unclose itself; to be unclosed; to be parted. The earth opened and swallowed up Dathan, and covered the company of Abiram. Ps. cvi.
  2. To begin to appear. As we sailed round the point, the harbor opened to our view.
  3. To commence; to begin. Sales of stock opened at par.
  4. To bark; a term in hunting.

O-PEN, v.t. [o'pn; Sax. openian; D. openen; G. öffnen; Sw. öpna; Dan. aabner; Ar. بَانَ bana or bauna. Class Bn, No. 3.]

  1. To unclose; to unbar; to unlock; to remove any fastening or cover and set open; as, to open a door or gate; to open a desk.
  2. To break the seal of a letter and unfold it.
  3. To separate parts that are close; as, to open the lips; to open the mouth or eyes or eyelids; to open a book.
  4. To remove a covering from; as, to open a pit.
  5. To cut through; to perforate; to lance; as, to open the skin; to open an abscess.
  6. To break; to divide; to split or rend; as, the earth was opened in many places by an earthquake; a rock is opened by blasting.
  7. To clear; to make by removing obstructions; as, to open a road; to open a passage; the heat of spring opens rivers bound with ice.
  8. To spread; to expand; as, to open the hand.
  9. To unstop; as, to open a bottle.
  10. To begin; to make the first exhibition. The attorney-general opens the cause on the part of the king or the state. Homer opens his poem with the utmost simplicity and modesty.
  11. To show; to bring to view or knowledge. The English did adventure far to open the north parts of America. Abbot.
  12. To interpret; to explain. While he opened to us the Scriptures. Luke xxiv.
  13. To reveal; to disclose. He opened his mind very freely.
  14. To make liberal; as, to open the heart.
  15. To make the first discharge of artillery; as, to open a heavy fire on the enemy.
  16. To enter on or begin; as, to open a negotiation or correspondence; to open a trade with the Indies.
  17. To begin to see by the removal of something that intercepted the view; as, we sailed round the point and opened the harbor.

O-PEN-ED, pp. [o'pned.]

Unclosed; unbarred; unsealed; uncovered; revealed; disclosed; made plain; freed from obstruction.

O-PEN-ER, n. [o'pner.]

  1. One that opens or removes any fastening or covering. Milton.
  2. One that explains; an interpreter. Shak.
  3. That which separates; that which rends. Boyle.
  4. An aperient in medicine.

O-PEN-EY-ED, a. [o'pneyed.]

Watchful; vigilant. Shak.

O-PEN-HAND-ED, a. [o'pnhanded.]

Generous; liberal; munificent. Rowe.

O-PEN-HEART-ED, a. [o'pnhàrted.]

Candid; frank; generous. Dryden.


With frankness; without reserve. Ch. Relig. Appeal.


Frankness; candor; sincerity; munificence; generosity. Johnson.

O-PEN-ING, n. [o'pning.]

  1. A breach; an aperture; a hole or perforation.
  2. A place admitting entrance; as, a bay or creek.
  3. Dawn; first appearance or visibleness; beginning of exhibition or discovery. The opening of your glory was like that of light. Dryden.

O-PEN-ING, ppr. [o'pning.]

Unclosing; unsealing; uncovering; revealing; interpreting.

O-PEN-LY, adv. [o'pnly.]

  1. Publicly; not in private; without secrecy; as, to avow our sins and follies openly. How grossly and openly do many of us contradict the precepts of the Gospel by our ungodliness and worldly lusts! Tillotson.
  2. Plainly; evidently; without reserve or disguise.

O-PEN-MOUTH-ED, a. [o'pnmouthed.]

Greedy; clamorous; as, an openmouthed lion. L'Estrange.

O-PEN-NESS, n. [o'pnness.]

  1. Freedom from covering or obstruction; as, the openness of a country.
  2. Plainness; clearness; freedom from obscurity or ambiguity; as, deliver your answers with more openness. Shak.
  3. Freedom from disguise; unreservedness; plainness. Felton.
  4. Expression of frankness or candor; as, openness of countenance.
  5. Unusual mildness; freedom from snow and frost; as, the openness of a winter.

OP'E-RA, n. [It. Sp. and Fr. from L. opera, work, labor.]

A dramatic composition set to music and sung on the stage, accompanied with musical instruments and enriched with magnificent dresses, machines, dancing, &c. Encyc.


Practicable. [Not used.] Brown.


A small telescope used in theaters.

OP-E-RAM'E-TER, n. [L. opera, and Gr. μετρον.]

An apparatus for ascertaining the number of rotations made by a machine or wheel in manufacturing cloth. Ure.

OP'ER-ANT, a. [See Operate.]

Having power to produce an effect. [Not used. We now use operative.] Shak.


One who operates. Coleridge.

OP'ER-ATE, v.i. [L. operor; Sp. operar; Fr. operer; Eth. ገብረ gaber, to make, do, form or ordain; deriv. ተገበረ tagabar, to work, to operate, to labor, to till; W. goberu, to operate; Arm. ober or gober, to make; ober or euffr, work; Ir. obair; Sp. and Port. obra; Fr. œuvre, ouvrage. The corresponding verb in Hebrew and Chaldee, גבר signifies to be strong, to prevail, and in Arabic, to bind fast, to consolidate, to repair. The primary sense is to strain or press, to exert force. Class Br, No. 14.]

  1. To act; to exert power or strength, physical or mechanical. External bodies operate on animals by means of perception. Sound operates upon the auditory nerves through the medium of air. Medicines operate on the body by increasing or diminishing organic action.
  2. To act or produce effect on the mind; to exert moral power or influence. Motives operate on the mind in determining the judgment. Examples operate in producing imitation. The virtues of private persons operate but on a few. Atterbury. A plain convincing reason operates on the mind both of a learned and an ignorant hearer as long as he lives. Swift.
  3. In surgery, to perform some manual act in a methodical manner upon a human body, and usually with instruments, with a view to restore soundness or health; as in amputation, lithotomy and the like.
  4. To act; to have agency; to produce any effect.

OP'ER-ATE, v.t.

To effect; to produce by agency. The same cause would operate a diminution of the value of stock. Hamilton. [This use is not frequent, and can hardly be said to be well authorized.]


Pertaining to the opera; a word used be musicians. Busby.

OP'ER-A-TING, ppr.

Acting; exerting agency or power; performing some manual act in surgery.

OP-ER-A'TION, n. [L. operatio.]

  1. The act or process of operating; agency; the exertion of power, physical, mechanical or moral. Speculative painting without the assistance of manual operation, can never attain to perfection. Dryden. The pain and sickness caused by manna are the effects of its operation on the stomach. Locke. So we speak of the operation of motives, reasons or arguments on the mind, the operation of causes, &c.
  2. Action; effect. Many medicinal drugs of rare operation. Heylin.
  3. Process; manipulation; series of acts in experiments; as in chimistry or metallurgy.
  4. In surgery, any methodical action of the hand, or of the hand with instruments, on the human body, with a view to heal a part diseased, fractured or dislocated, as in amputation, &c.
  5. Action or movements of an army or fleet; as, military or naval operations.
  6. Movements of machinery.
  7. Movements of any physical body.