Base Base, n. [F. base, L. basis, fr. Gr. ba`sis a stepping, step, a base, pedestal, fr. bai`nein to go, step, akin to E. come. Cf. {Basis}, and see {Come}.] 1. The bottom of anything, considered as its support, or that on which something rests for support; the foundation; as, the base of a statue. ``The base of mighty mountains.'' --Prescott. [1913 Webster]

2. Fig.: The fundamental or essential part of a thing; the essential principle; a groundwork. [1913 Webster]

3. (Arch.) (a) The lower part of a wall, pier, or column, when treated as a separate feature, usually in projection, or especially ornamented. (b) The lower part of a complete architectural design, as of a monument; also, the lower part of any elaborate piece of furniture or decoration. [1913 Webster]

4. (Bot.) That extremity of a leaf, fruit, etc., at which it is attached to its support. [1913 Webster]

5. (Chem.) The positive, or non-acid component of a salt; a substance which, combined with an acid, neutralizes the latter and forms a salt; -- applied also to the hydroxides of the positive elements or radicals, and to certain organic bodies resembling them in their property of forming salts with acids. [1913 Webster]

6. (Pharmacy) The chief ingredient in a compound. [1913 Webster]

7. (Dyeing) A substance used as a mordant. --Ure. [1913 Webster]

8. (Fort.) The exterior side of the polygon, or that imaginary line which connects the salient angles of two adjacent bastions. [1913 Webster]

9. (Geom.) The line or surface constituting that part of a figure on which it is supposed to stand. [1913 Webster]

10. (Math.) The number from which a mathematical table is constructed; as, the base of a system of logarithms. [1913 Webster]

11. [See {Base} low.] A low, or deep, sound. (Mus.) (a) The lowest part; the deepest male voice. (b) One who sings, or the instrument which plays, base. [Now commonly written {bass}.] [1913 Webster]

The trebles squeak for fear, the bases roar. --Dryden. [1913 Webster]

12. (Mil.) A place or tract of country, protected by fortifications, or by natural advantages, from which the operations of an army proceed, forward movements are made, supplies are furnished, etc. [1913 Webster]

13. (Mil.) The smallest kind of cannon. [Obs.] [1913 Webster]

14. (Zo["o]l.) That part of an organ by which it is attached to another more central organ. [1913 Webster]

15. (Crystallog.) The basal plane of a crystal. [1913 Webster]

16. (Geol.) The ground mass of a rock, especially if not distinctly crystalline. [1913 Webster]

17. (Her.) The lower part of the field. See {Escutcheon}. [1913 Webster]

18. The housing of a horse. [Obs.] [1913 Webster]

19. pl. A kind of skirt (often of velvet or brocade, but sometimes of mailed armor) which hung from the middle to about the knees, or lower. [Obs.] [1913 Webster]

20. The lower part of a robe or petticoat. [Obs.] [1913 Webster]

21. An apron. [Obs.] ``Bakers in their linen bases.'' --Marston. [1913 Webster]

22. The point or line from which a start is made; a starting place or a goal in various games. [1913 Webster]

To their appointed base they went. --Dryden. [1913 Webster]

23. (Surv.) A line in a survey which, being accurately determined in length and position, serves as the origin from which to compute the distances and positions of any points or objects connected with it by a system of triangles. --Lyman. [1913 Webster]

24. A rustic play; -- called also {prisoner's base}, {prison base}, or {bars}. ``To run the country base.'' --Shak. [1913 Webster]

25. (Baseball) Any one of the four bounds which mark the circuit of the infield. [1913 Webster]

{Altern base}. See under {Altern}.

{Attic base}. (Arch.) See under {Attic}.

{Base course}. (Arch.) (a) The first or lower course of a foundation wall, made of large stones or a mass of concrete; -- called also {foundation course}. (b) The architectural member forming the transition between the basement and the wall above.

{Base hit} (Baseball), a hit, by which the batsman, without any error on the part of his opponents, is able to reach the first base without being put out.

{Base line}. (a) A main line taken as a base, as in surveying or in military operations. (b) A line traced round a cannon at the rear of the vent.

{Base plate}, the foundation plate of heavy machinery, as of the steam engine; the bed plate.

{Base ring} (Ordnance), a projecting band of metal around the breech, connected with the body of the gun by a concave molding. --H. L. Scott. [1913 Webster]

The Collaborative International Dictionary of English. 2000.

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