On call
Call Call, n. 1. The act of calling; -- usually with the voice, but often otherwise, as by signs, the sound of some instrument, or by writing; a summons; an entreaty; an invitation; as, a call for help; the bugle's call. ``Call of the trumpet.'' --Shak. [1913 Webster]

I rose as at thy call, but found thee not. --Milton. [1913 Webster]

2. A signal, as on a drum, bugle, trumpet, or pipe, to summon soldiers or sailors to duty. [1913 Webster]

3. (Eccl.) An invitation to take charge of or serve a church as its pastor. [1913 Webster]

4. A requirement or appeal arising from the circumstances of the case; a moral requirement or appeal. [1913 Webster]

Dependence is a perpetual call upon humanity. --Addison. [1913 Webster]

Running into danger without any call of duty. --Macaulay. [1913 Webster]

5. A divine vocation or summons. [1913 Webster]

St. Paul himself believed he did well, and that he had a call to it, when he persecuted the Christians. --Locke. [1913 Webster]

6. Vocation; employment.

Note: [In this sense, calling is generally used.] [1913 Webster]

7. A short visit; as, to make a call on a neighbor; also, the daily coming of a tradesman to solicit orders. [1913 Webster]

The baker's punctual call. --Cowper. [1913 Webster]

8. (Hunting) A note blown on the horn to encourage the hounds. [1913 Webster]

9. (Naut.) A whistle or pipe, used by the boatswain and his mate, to summon the sailors to duty. [1913 Webster]

10. (Fowling) The cry of a bird; also a noise or cry in imitation of a bird; or a pipe to call birds by imitating their note or cry. [1913 Webster]

11. (Amer. Land Law) A reference to, or statement of, an object, course, distance, or other matter of description in a survey or grant requiring or calling for a corresponding object, etc., on the land. [1913 Webster]

12. The privilege to demand the delivery of stock, grain, or any commodity, at a fixed, price, at or within a certain time agreed on. [Brokers' Cant] [1913 Webster]

13. See {Assessment}, 4. [1913 Webster]

{At call}, or {On call}, liable to be demanded at any moment without previous notice; as money on deposit.

{Call bird}, a bird taught to allure others into a snare.

{Call boy} (a) A boy who calls the actors in a theater; a boy who transmits the orders of the captain of a vessel to the engineer, helmsman, etc. (b) A waiting boy who answers a cal, or cames at the ringing of a bell; a bell boy.

{Call note}, the note naturally used by the male bird to call the female. It is artificially applied by birdcatchers as a decoy. --Latham.

{Call of the house} (Legislative Bodies), a calling over the names of members, to discover who is absent, or for other purposes; a calling of names with a view to obtaining the ayes and noes from the persons named.

{Call to the bar}, admission to practice in the courts. [1913 Webster]


The Collaborative International Dictionary of English. 2000.

Look at other dictionaries:

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  • on-call targets — Planned targets that are known to exist in an operational area and are located in sufficient time for deliberate planning to meet emerging situations specific to campaign objectives. See also on call; operational area; target …   Military dictionary

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