To curse by bell book and candle
Curse Curse (k?rs), v. t. [imp. & p. p. {Cursed} (k?rst) or {Curst}; p. pr. & vb. n. {Cursing}.] [AS. cursian, corsian, perh. of Scand. origin; cf. Dan. korse to make the sign of the cross, Sw. korsa, fr. Dan. & Sw. kors cross, Icel kross, all these Scand. words coming fr. OF. crois, croiz, fr. L. crux cross. Cf. {Cross}.] 1. To call upon divine or supernatural power to send injury upon; to imprecate evil upon; to execrate. [1913 Webster]

Thou shalt not . . . curse the ruler of thy people. --Ex. xxii. 28. [1913 Webster]

Ere sunset I'll make thee curse the deed. --Shak. [1913 Webster]

2. To bring great evil upon; to be the cause of serious harm or unhappiness to; to furnish with that which will be a cause of deep trouble; to afflict or injure grievously; to harass or torment. [1913 Webster]

On impious realms and barbarous kings impose Thy plagues, and curse 'em with such sons as those. --Pope. [1913 Webster]

{To curse by bell, book, and candle}. See under {Bell}. [1913 Webster]


The Collaborative International Dictionary of English. 2000.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • To curse by bell book and candle — Candle Can dle, n. [OE. candel, candel, AS, candel, fr. L. candela a (white) light made of wax or tallow, fr. cand[ e]re to be white. See {Candid}, and cf. {Chandler}, {Cannel}, {Kindle}.] 1. A slender, cylindrical body of tallow, containing a… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • To curse by bell book and candle — Book Book (b[oo^]k), n. [OE. book, bok, AS. b[=o]c; akin to Goth. b[=o]ka a letter, in pl. book, writing, Icel. b[=o]k, Sw. bok, Dan. bog, OS. b[=o]k, D. boek, OHG. puoh, G. buch; and fr. AS. b[=o]c, b[=e]ce, beech; because the ancient Saxons and …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • To curse by bell — Bell Bell, n. [AS. belle, fr. bellan to bellow. See {Bellow}.] 1. A hollow metallic vessel, usually shaped somewhat like a cup with a flaring mouth, containing a clapper or tongue, and giving forth a ringing sound on being struck. [1913 Webster]… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Bell, book, and candle — The phrase Bell, book, and candle refers to an archaic method of excommunication for one who had committed a particularly grievous sin. Apparently introduced around the late 9th century, the practice was once used by the Roman Catholic Church.… …   Wikipedia

  • To speak by the book — Book Book (b[oo^]k), n. [OE. book, bok, AS. b[=o]c; akin to Goth. b[=o]ka a letter, in pl. book, writing, Icel. b[=o]k, Sw. bok, Dan. bog, OS. b[=o]k, D. boek, OHG. puoh, G. buch; and fr. AS. b[=o]c, b[=e]ce, beech; because the ancient Saxons and …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • and candle — Bell Bell, n. [AS. belle, fr. bellan to bellow. See {Bellow}.] 1. A hollow metallic vessel, usually shaped somewhat like a cup with a flaring mouth, containing a clapper or tongue, and giving forth a ringing sound on being struck. [1913 Webster]… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • by the book — Book Book (b[oo^]k), n. [OE. book, bok, AS. b[=o]c; akin to Goth. b[=o]ka a letter, in pl. book, writing, Icel. b[=o]k, Sw. bok, Dan. bog, OS. b[=o]k, D. boek, OHG. puoh, G. buch; and fr. AS. b[=o]c, b[=e]ce, beech; because the ancient Saxons and …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • To bear the bell — Bell Bell, n. [AS. belle, fr. bellan to bellow. See {Bellow}.] 1. A hollow metallic vessel, usually shaped somewhat like a cup with a flaring mouth, containing a clapper or tongue, and giving forth a ringing sound on being struck. [1913 Webster]… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • To lose the bell — Bell Bell, n. [AS. belle, fr. bellan to bellow. See {Bellow}.] 1. A hollow metallic vessel, usually shaped somewhat like a cup with a flaring mouth, containing a clapper or tongue, and giving forth a ringing sound on being struck. [1913 Webster]… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Candle — Can dle, n. [OE. candel, candel, AS, candel, fr. L. candela a (white) light made of wax or tallow, fr. cand[ e]re to be white. See {Candid}, and cf. {Chandler}, {Cannel}, {Kindle}.] 1. A slender, cylindrical body of tallow, containing a wick… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

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