Daily Dose of Samuel Johnson: MORTAR & more

My Word of the Day

MORTAR (MO’RTAR) n.s.[mortarium, Lat. mortier, Fr.]1. A strong vessel in which materials are broken by being pounded with a pestle.

Except you could bray Christendom in a mortar, and mould it into a new paste, there is no possibility of an holy war. Bacon’sholy War.

The action of the diaphragm and muscles serves for the comminution of the meat in the stomach by their constant agitation upwards and downwards, resembling the pounding of materials in a mortar. Rayon Creation.2. A short wide cannon out of which bombs are thrown.

Those arms which for nine centuries had brav’d The wrath of time on antique stone engrav’d, Now torn by mortars stand yet undefac’d On nobler trophies by thy valour rais’d. Granville.

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