Lycidas Vocabulary & Notes - - - - - - - - - - - home

line 1: ye laurels: The foliage of this tree as an emblem of victory or of distinction in poetry, etc.

line 3: your berries: Refers to laurels, in this instance, your honor through poetic tribute.

line 6: occassion dear: grievious.

line 8: Lycidas: a traditional pastoral name.

line 12: wat'ry bier: Consisting of water. Chiefly poet. or rhet. of natural features, as the sea and rivers. watery way, a route by which one journeys over water.

line 14: meed of some melodious tune: That which is bestowed in requital of labour or service, or in consideration of (good or ill) desert; wages, hire; recompense, reward.

line 26: eyelids of the morn: Dawn?

line 28: gray-fly: Some annoying buzzing fly?

line 31: westering wheel: Westward movement, declension westwards

line 33: oaten flute: Made of the straw or stem of an oat

line 40: gadding vine o'ergrown: that gads or gads about, wandering, straggling

line 46: taint-worm to the weanling: A worm or crawling larva supposed to taint or infect cattle

line 46: taint-worm to the weanling: A young child or animal newly weaned

line 47: wardrobe: A person's stock of wearing apparel.

line 64: uncessant care: INCESSANT a. Very common c 1550-1690.)

line 73: guerdon: A reward, requital, or recompense

line 79: glistering foil: brilliant jewel, as mirror

line 88: my oat: flute

line 94: beaked promontory: pointed or hooked

line 94: beaked promontory: A point of high land which juts out into the sea or other expanse of water beyond the line of coast; a headland.

line 100: perfidiousbark: Characterized by perfidy; guilty of breaking faith or violating confidence; deliberately faithless; basely treacherous

line 100: perfidious bark: A small ship; in earlier times, a general term for all sailing vessels of small size, e.g. fishing-smacks, xebecs, pinnaces; in modern use, applied poetically or rhetorically to any sailing vessel, `our gallant bark

line 110: massy keys: massive, but may also be a pun on St Peter being of "mass" and of "mercy"

line 111: shuts amain: in, or with, full force; with main force, with all one's might; vehemently, violently.

line 112: young swain: A young man attending on a knight; hence, a man of low degree.

line 88: mitred locks: an abbot

invested by the pope with the privilege of wearing a mitre

line 117: shearer's feast: A reaper of standing crops.

line 118: blind mouths: sheep which eat, never looking up, allegory to religous followers?

line 123: scranel pipes: Thin, meagre. Now chiefly as a reminiscence of Milton's use, usually with the sense: Harsh, unmelodious

line 125: swoln with wind: SWOLLEN

line 131: two-handed engine: meaning is obscure, perhaps, Wielded with both hands, as a sword

line 138: swart star: black star, Dog Star

line 139: enameled eyes: Ornamented or covered with enamel, or with a glossy coating resembling enamel

line 144: crowtoe: an early name of the wild hyacinth

line 144: jessamine : a climbing or ascending shrub with fragrant white flowers

line 146: musk-rose: rambling rose (Rosa moschata), having large fragrant white flowers, in panicled clusters

line 146: woodbine: ivy

line 152: whelming: To overturn, capsize

line 170: new-spangled : freshly adorned

line 186: uncouth swain: With which one is not acquainted or familiar; unfamiliar, unaccustomed, strange

line 187: sandals gray: The shore of the sea, on which the waves break, the strand

line 188: tender stops: musical notes on a flute

line 188: various quills: different reeds, pitches

line 192: mantle blue: sky that enfolds, enwraps or encloses; a covering.

These supplemental definitions were pulled off the Online OED and assembled by your peer. Please be advised to double-check. This list is meant to be a suggestion only. Your interpretation counts.

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