Middle English Dictionary Entry

skil n.
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Entry Info

Definitions (Senses and Subsenses)

1.
(a) The intellectual faculty, reason; also person.; wit and ~; (b) ~ wille (lereth, mot sen), reason demands (teaches, might discover); ~ witnesse, reason; -- ?error for skil-wisnes n.; a feble (simple) ~, a feeble mind, dull wit; in ~, in one's right mind; in ouen ~, within (one's) rational capability; kinde ~, natural understanding; scomfit of ~, out of (one's) mind, mentally disoriented; slei of ~, clever, sly; (c) an ability to perceive, an awareness.
2.
(a) Reasonableness, discretion; moderate behavior, moderation, self-control; oute of ~, unreasonable; immoderately, unreasonably; bringen oute of ~, to cause (sb.) to become immoderate; (b) sound judgment, good sense; discrimination; also, the act of discriminating or judging; ?also, the power of discrimination [quot.: a1450(?1404)]; oute of ~, without discrimination; grounded withouten ~, not grounded in ~; (c) justice, fairness; oute of ~, unjust; [some quots. in one sense of 2. may belong to another]; (d) as adj.: ?discreet, tactful, reasonable; ?error for stille adj.2.
3.
(a) That which is reasonable, fitting, appropriate, proper, correct, right, etc.; -- usu. in quasi-adjectival use with impers. constructions; ~ and right (resoun), ~ ne right (resoun), right (resoun) and ~; (b) god) ~ is, gret) ~ is, is ~, it is (very) appropriate or fitting; as ~ is and resoun, as resoun and ~, as it is right or appropriate; as god ~ wolde ben, as would be appropriate; hit wille god ~, it would be a good idea, it makes good sense; muchel is gret ~, it is very reasonable, it makes good sense; herken ~, to listen to reason; holden ~, consider it appropriate or right; seien (speken) ~; seien me ~, tell me the truth; sen ~, deem it appropriate; setten in even ~, formulate (a petition) properly; (c) ayenes ~, ayenes al ~ and right, ayen al ~ (and right, improperly, inappropriately; bi (right) ~, bi ~ and resoun, bi right and ~, in an appropriate manner, fittingly, rightly; as bi ~, as is appropriate; in (of, thurgh) ~, rightly, appropriately, fittingly; in right and in ~, in accordance with what is right; oute of ~ (and resoun, inappropriate, improper; over ~, beyond what is fitting; inappropriately; to resoun and to ~, within the bounds of what is fitting and proper.
4.
(a) A reason for an observed fact, a condition, or an action, an explanation; a cause (of sth.); ~ and (ne) cause, cause and ~; god ~ whi, for good reason; what ~, for what reason; (b) asken a ~, to ask for an explanation; haven ~, have a reason; knouen no bettre ~ bi, have no better explanation from (sb.); sheuen ~, tellen ~ (and resoun; hit mai ben comen to thre skiles, it may be for three reasons; wher ani ~ asketh hit, wherever it is required; (c) bi ~, for this (good) reason; also, because (of sth.), by reason; bi kinde ~, from natural causes; bi more (this, etc.) ~, bi what ~ and resoun, etc.; for som ~ as, ?forasmuch as; for the ~ of, because of (sth.), by reason of; for this (ani other, lik, etc.) ~, etc.; in god (this) ~, with good (a good) reason, for this reason; mid muchel ~, ?for good reason; thurgh ~ on, because of (sth.), by reason of; thurgh this (what) ~, for this (what) reason; with (no) ~, for that (no) reason; withouten (god) ~, withouten ~ and (other ani) resoun, withouten ani resoun or ~.
5.
(a) A logical argument or reasoned exposition intended to persuade someone or prove something; also, an excuse; (b) ben drauen of ~, to be won over by (someone's) argument; knitten sleigh knotte on ~, work a clever strategem into (one's) argument; maken (alleien, mouen, putten, seien, setten, sheuen, tellen) ~, offer an argument; sen ~, see (someone's) point; taken reward of skiles, consider or heed (someone's) arguments; (c) bi (in, thurgh, with) ~, by argument; bi propre (the same, etc.) ~, bi (sondri) skiles, in theire skiles, etc.
6.
(a) A purpose, goal, an aim; also, physiol. the purpose or function of an organ, a bodily structure, etc.; mid muchel ~, with an important purpose in mind; (b) a plan; a ruse, scheme, stratagem; (c) desire, will; also, motivation, incentive [1st quot.]; also, a decree, an ordinance; al her ~, as long as she wishes; (d) a case, cause.
7.
(a) Knowledge; also, divine wisdom [quot.: c1325]; godcund (hevenli) ~, divine wisdom; connen ~ of (in, on, upon), to have knowledge of (sth.); connen litel ~ on, acquire little knowledge from (a book), be unable to understand; tellen al his ~, impart his wisdom; (b) ability, capacity; skill, expertise; bi ~, with skill, ably; with (mid, to) ~, with skill; also, with patience [quot.: a1325, 2nd]; with al ~, with all (one's) ability; also, as well as possible; connen ~, to have the ability or skill (to do sth); connen ~ in (on), have ability or skill in (hawking, versifying, etc.); connen laue and ~, have the ability to argue a legal case; connen non other ~, know nothing else to do; haven ~ bi, have the ability to judge (sth.).
8.
(a) A just claim, an entitlement; a legal or moral right (to sth.); ~ and right, right ~; an even ~, an equal division or share; bi ~ of, by virtue of (sth.), as a concomitant right of; bi wikked ~, ?without right, illegally; (b) an account, a reckoning; yelden ~.
9.
10.
In proverbs and prov. expressions.
11.
(a) In surnames; (b) in place names.