Middle English Dictionary Entry

rē̆st(e n.(1)
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Entry Info

Definitions (Senses and Subsenses)

(a) Rest due to sleep; repose; slumber; -- also pl.; at (in, on) ~, at rest, asleep; oute of ~, out of sleep; (b) the repose of the grave, death; ~ of the ded, repose of death; at ~, dead; also, laid to rest [quot.: c1390]; ro and ~, peace and rest; (c) a place of rest; also, dwelling place, abode; longe ~, final resting place, the grave; med. ~ of veines, a place (in the body) containing veins; fig. of a virtue: ben (set) at ~ in, haven ~ in, to dwell in (sb.); refl. taken him ~ in, dwell in (sb.); (d) a bed, couch; ~ imone, sexual intercourse; (e) laste ~, a final mode of life, retirement.
In phrases: (a) comen (drauen, gon, wenden) to ~, yeden hem to ~, to come (go) to rest, retire; drauen him to his ~, betake himself to his rest; gon to his (hir) ~, go to his (her) rest; ben to ~ ward, be retired for the night; bringen to ~, put (sb) to bed; (b) of the sun: gon (drauen, yeden) to ~, to set; ben to ~, ben gone (setled, sette) to ~, be set; (c) taken (cacchen, fongen) ~, to take (one's) rest, go to bed; hauen ~, have rest, sleep.
(a) A temporary interruption or cessation of labor, activity, effort, etc.; a pause in a narrative [quot.: Capgr.St.Kath.]; ~ of men diing, a pause in the slaughter; holden in ~ from, to restrain (oneself) from (an act), refrain from; taken ~ and ro, rest; (b) refreshment resulting from the cessation of activity, relaxation, relief; haven (seken) ~, to have (seek) rest; don to ~, bring (sb., oneself) to rest; (c) bringen to ~, to bring (sth.) to rest in a place; setten at ~ upon, set (one's heart) on (sb.); (d) in adv. phrases: oute of ~, without respite, always; withouten ~, endlessly, without ceasing; (e) taken ~, of anger: to abate.
(a) The absence of exertion or activity, freedom from labor; leisure; also, idleness; liven with ~ and ro, to live a life of leisure; (b) an absence of motion, immobility; also, silence; -- also pl.; at (in) ~, motionless, still; clom and ~, quiet and silence, peace and quiet; withouten ~, ever moving, restless; (c) ease, comfort.
(a) Freedom from trouble, distress, pain, aggression, etc.; a state of peace, security, or domestic tranquillity; also person. [quot.: a1425]; also, pl. periods of peace; in ~, at peace, in tranquillity; (b) bringen in ~, to make peace; dwellen in ~, liven in (on) ~, live at peace; maken ~ bitwixe, setten ~ atwen, make peace between (kings, kingdoms); putten in ~, setten at (in) ~, set (a ruler, kingdom) at peace; (c) remission of a tribute or tax; law in conveyance formula: in ~, without molestation; claimen to be in ~, to quitclaim (sth.); (d) in proverbs.
Freedom from toil or care in the future life, the eternal rest of heaven; ~ and ro, ro and ~, eternal rest and peace.
(a) Spiritual or mental tranquillity, peace of mind; herte ~ [see herte n.2a.(c)]; hauen ~ ne ro, to have rest nor peace (until sth. is done); (b) a source of spiritual peace; (c) in prayers, oaths, and asseverations: god yeue his soule ~, God rest his soul; god yeue me (you, etc.) ~, God give me (you, etc.) rest; so haue I ~, so help me.
In cpds.: ~ dai [OE reste-dæg], the day of rest, the Sabbath [cp. resten-dai n.]; ~ egginge, ?harrowing of fallow land (to keep down weeds) [cp. eggen v.(3) & resten v.(1) 5.(b)]; ~ wimbel, a type of wimbel, perh. one braced against the user's body; ?= rest-nauger n.; ~ wode, windfallen wood, twigs, underbrush, etc.

Supplemental Materials (draft)

  • (a1387) Trev.Higd.(StJ-C H.1)2.349 : Þese eiȝte ȝere beeþ acounted wiþ Othoniel his tyme, Caleph his broþer, by þe Hebrewes; but þe ȝeres of reste and of þraldom [Higd.(2): yeres of the quietnes and seruitute; L anni quietis et servitutis]were acounted to gidres vnder iuges of Israel þe sothnesse of acountes wolde not stonde in þe storie.
  • Note: Additional quot. for sense 4.(a).--per MLL

Supplemental Materials (draft)

Note: Some or all of the quots. with 'soule' under reste, sense 6.(a), especially *Trev.Barth. and Gen.&Ex., are probably better placed under sense 5. While one could argue that "spiritual tranquility" is broad enough to include such quots., the 'reste' of the 'soule' mentioned in them most likely refers to the (future) eternal rest of heaven, not to a "peace of mind" in this world. 'Soule' here, I am convinced, has the sense "that in man which is eternal and lives on after death'" (Note the next few lines of the Orm. quot., and the *Trev.Barth. 127b/a quot. under sense 5., which undoubtedly has the same sense as the *Trev.Barth. 127a/b quot. now under sense 6.(a). The primary allegorical sense of the Sabbath is eternal rest (see Danielou). The god yeve his sould ~ quots. under sense 6.(c), and probably most of the other quots. there, are also, I am convinced, misplaced where they are and should be moved to sense 5.--per MP