Variation of the needle
Variation Va`ri*a"tion, n. [OE. variatioun, F. variation, L. variatio. See {Vary}.] [1913 Webster] 1. The act of varying; a partial change in the form, position, state, or qualities of a thing; modification; alternation; mutation; diversity; deviation; as, a variation of color in different lights; a variation in size; variation of language. [1913 Webster]

The essences of things are conceived not capable of any such variation. --Locke. [1913 Webster]

2. Extent to which a thing varies; amount of departure from a position or state; amount or rate of change. [1913 Webster]

3. (Gram.) Change of termination of words, as in declension, conjugation, derivation, etc. [1913 Webster]

4. (Mus.) Repetition of a theme or melody with fanciful embellishments or modifications, in time, tune, or harmony, or sometimes change of key; the presentation of a musical thought in new and varied aspects, yet so that the essential features of the original shall still preserve their identity. [1913 Webster]

5. (Alg.) One of the different arrangements which can be made of any number of quantities taking a certain number of them together. [1913 Webster]

{Annual variation} (Astron.), the yearly change in the right ascension or declination of a star, produced by the combined effects of the precession of the equinoxes and the proper motion of the star.

{Calculus of variations}. See under {Calculus}.

{Variation compass}. See under {Compass}.

{Variation of the moon} (Astron.), an inequality of the moon's motion, depending on the angular distance of the moon from the sun. It is greater at the octants, and zero at the quadratures.

{Variation of the needle} (Geog. & Naut.), the angle included between the true and magnetic meridians of a place; the deviation of the direction of a magnetic needle from the true north and south line; -- called also {declination of the needle}. [1913 Webster]

Syn: Change; vicissitude; variety; deviation. [1913 Webster]


The Collaborative International Dictionary of English. 2000.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Variation of the moon — Variation Va ri*a tion, n. [OE. variatioun, F. variation, L. variatio. See {Vary}.] [1913 Webster] 1. The act of varying; a partial change in the form, position, state, or qualities of a thing; modification; alternation; mutation; diversity;… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • declination of the needle — Variation Va ri*a tion, n. [OE. variatioun, F. variation, L. variatio. See {Vary}.] [1913 Webster] 1. The act of varying; a partial change in the form, position, state, or qualities of a thing; modification; alternation; mutation; diversity;… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

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  • Deviation of the compass — deviation de vi*a tion, n. [LL. deviatio: cf. F. d[ e]viation.] 1. The act of deviating; a wandering from the way; variation from the common way, from an established rule, etc.; departure, as from the right course or the path of duty. [1913… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Deviation of the line of the vertical — deviation de vi*a tion, n. [LL. deviatio: cf. F. d[ e]viation.] 1. The act of deviating; a wandering from the way; variation from the common way, from an established rule, etc.; departure, as from the right course or the path of duty. [1913… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Variation — Va ri*a tion, n. [OE. variatioun, F. variation, L. variatio. See {Vary}.] [1913 Webster] 1. The act of varying; a partial change in the form, position, state, or qualities of a thing; modification; alternation; mutation; diversity; deviation; as …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Variation compass — Variation Va ri*a tion, n. [OE. variatioun, F. variation, L. variatio. See {Vary}.] [1913 Webster] 1. The act of varying; a partial change in the form, position, state, or qualities of a thing; modification; alternation; mutation; diversity;… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

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  • Variation compass — Compass Com pass (k[u^]m pas), n. [F. compas, fr. LL. compassus circle, prop., a stepping together; com + passus pace, step. See {Pace}, {Pass}.] 1. A passing round; circuit; circuitous course. [1913 Webster] They fetched a compass of seven day s …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

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