Middle English Dictionary Entry

worship(e n.
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Entry Info

Definitions (Senses and Subsenses)

(a) Honor, high respect, esteem; worthiness, merit; fame, glory, renown; also, an honor, accolade; ~ dede, an honorable act, a feat of honor; place of ~, a distinguished home; don ani to ~, ?to do (sth.) with any distinction; (b) in selected phrases: for (in) ~, in (someone’s) honor; for (in) ~ of, in honor of (sb. or sth.); him to ~, in honor of him; don (werken) ~, to do honor (to sb. or oneself), show (sb. or sth.) respect; haven (winnen) ~, have (gain) honor; also, in respectful greeting: ~ have thou, honor be to thee; (c) the state or fact of being held in high esteem, receiving honor, being renowned, etc.; haven (holden) in ~, to honor (sb., a place), hold in honor; holden on ~, keep (sb.) in honorable estate; (d) the action of paying honor or respect; a ceremony serving to demonstrate the honor or esteem in which someone is held; ceremony, pomp; mid (with) ~; (e) reputation, repute; a person’s good name, respectability; a woman’s honor, perceived virtue, her reputation for chastity, modesty, etc.; also, prestige, credibility, integrity; man of ~, a man of good repute [sometimes difficult to distinguish from senses 1.(a) & 3.(a)]; ben (turnen) to ~, to be to (someone’s) credit, be good for (someone’s) reputation; promisen (sweren) upon ~, swear on (one’s) honor; (f) that which reflects credit (on sb.); a cause or source of honor, good reputation, etc.; in impers. constructions with inf. or clause introduced by if, that, etc.: hit is ~, it is a credit (to do sth., that one does sth., if sb. did sth., etc.); (g) that which betokens the respect with which someone or something is regarded, a sign of honor or esteem; also, ?one who serves as a paradigm of honor [last quot.]; (h) an honorable act, a deed of valor;—also coll.; don (sen) ~; (i) ?circumspection, propriety of behavior; also, ?solemn or grave respect, a reverential attitude [last quot.]; (j) in set phrases of invocation or benediction.
(a) Devout belief in a divine being or power, religious faith; place of ~, a religious house or community; (b) the veneration offered to that which is regarded as holy or sacred, devout reverence directed toward a deity, a person, an institution, object, etc.; theol. the reverence which may be given to angels, saints, and other creatures, dulia; the veneration which may be offered to the Virgin Mary as the most exalted of creatures, hyperdulia; the highest form of veneration which may be offered only to God and the Godhead, latria; also fig.;—also pl.; (c) the state or fact of being revered as holy; an instance of this; in ~; (d) the or an act of offering worship to a deity; the practice of a religious ceremony, ritual, service, etc.; congregational or individual devotions [sometimes difficult to distinguish from (b)]; don ~; (e) an outward sign of religious devotion, a mark of commitment; (f) divine glory, magnificence; glorification; to the ~ of god, ~ be to god, etc.; (g) in set phrases: for ~ of, in (the) ~ of, in honor of (God, a saint, a feast day, etc.), to the honor of; him to ~, in honor of him, to his honor.
(a) A person’s social standing, status, rank; an office, official position; also, high rank, high office; gret (heigh, muchel) ~; man (folkes) of ~, a man (folk) of importance, high rank, or high office [sometimes difficult to distinguish from senses 1.(a) & (e)]; setten biforen in ~, to set (sb.) ahead in order of precedence; (b) a person of high rank or position; also in direct address as a term of respect for such a person;—usu. with pers. pron.
(a) Praise; speken (seien, writen) ~; (b) as term of association: a company (of writers).
(a) Value, worth; also, efficacy; o ~, precious, valuable; ben in the most ~, ben had in gret ~, to be considered most valuable (very efficacious); (b) benefit; reward; profit; ~ and profite, profite and ~; (c) pl. ?good fortune.
Sovereignty; power, authority; dominance.
The word ‘worshipe’ as a technical term.
In proverbs and prov. expressions.

Supplemental Materials (draft)

  • (?a1300) Mem.Ripon in Sur.Soc.7491 : Atte the land of Seint Wilfray of ilkyn' Geld fre shal ben' ay, that y ne haue nan yet langes me to in thar wharshape shal haue at do; And for ich will yat yay ben saue, I wyll that yay alleyn fredom haue.
  • Note: New spelling: Also..wharshape.
    Note: ?Belongs to sense 1.(b).--per MLL
    Note: Geld = each kind of tax.
    Note: at do: 'at' is here the sign of the infinitive..the meaning of this obscure couplet seems to be 'That I have none that belong to me, (who) in there (sc. in the Liberty) warship (military service) shall have to do'.