|Noah Webster's Dictionary|
1. (imp. & p. p.) of Set.
2. (v. t.) To cause to sit; to make to assume a specified position or attitude; to give site or place to; to place; to put; to fix; as, to set a house on a stone foundation; to set a book on a shelf; to set a dish on a table; to set a chest or trunk on its bottom or on end.
3. (v. t.) Hence, to attach or affix (something) to something else, or in or upon a certain place.
4. (v. t.) To make to assume specified place, condition, or occupation; to put in a certain condition or state (described by the accompanying words); to cause to be.
5. (v. t.) To fix firmly; to make fast, permanent, or stable; to render motionless; to give an unchanging place, form, or condition to.
6. (v. t.) To cause to stop or stick; to obstruct; to fasten to a spot; hence, to occasion difficulty to; to embarrass; as, to set a coach in the mud.
7. (v. t.) To fix beforehand; to determine; hence, to make unyielding or obstinate; to render stiff, unpliant, or rigid; as, to set one's countenance.
8. (v. t.) To fix in the ground, as a post or a tree; to plant; as, to set pear trees in an orchard.
9. (v. t.) To fix, as a precious stone, in a border of metal; to place in a setting; hence, to place in or amid something which serves as a setting; as, to set glass in a sash.
10. (v. t.) To render stiff or solid; especially, to convert into curd; to curdle; as, to set milk for cheese.
11. (v. t.) To put into a desired position or condition; to adjust; to regulate; to adapt.
12. (v. t.) To put in order in a particular manner; to prepare; as, to set (that is, to hone) a razor; to set a saw.
13. (v. t.) To extend and bring into position; to spread; as, to set the sails of a ship.
14. (v. t.) To give a pitch to, as a tune; to start by fixing the keynote; as, to set a psalm.
15. (v. t.) To reduce from a dislocated or fractured state; to replace; as, to set a broken bone.
16. (v. t.) To make to agree with some standard; as, to set a watch or a clock.
17. (v. t.) To lower into place and fix solidly, as the blocks of cut stone in a structure.
18. (v. t.) To stake at play; to wager; to risk.
19. (v. t.) To fit with music; to adapt, as words to notes; to prepare for singing.
20. (v. t.) To determine; to appoint; to assign; to fix; as, to set a time for a meeting; to set a price on a horse.
21. (v. t.) To adorn with something infixed or affixed; to stud; to variegate with objects placed here and there.
22. (v. t.) To value; to rate; -- with at.
23. (v. t.) To point out the seat or position of, as birds, or other game; -- said of hunting dogs.
24. (v. t.) To establish as a rule; to furnish; to prescribe; to assign; as, to set an example; to set lessons to be learned.
25. (v. t.) To suit; to become; as, it sets him ill.
26. (v. t.) To compose; to arrange in words, lines, etc.; as, to set type; to set a page.
27. (v. i.) To pass below the horizon; to go down; to decline; to sink out of sight; to come to an end.
28. (v. i.) To fit music to words.
29. (v. i.) To place plants or shoots in the ground; to plant.
30. (v. i.) To be fixed for growth; to strike root; to begin to germinate or form; as, cuttings set well; the fruit has set well (i. e., not blasted in the blossom).
31. (v. i.) To become fixed or rigid; to be fastened.
32. (v. i.) To congeal; to concrete; to solidify.
33. (v. i.) To have a certain direction in motion; to flow; to move on; to tend; as, the current sets to the north; the tide sets to the windward.
34. (v. i.) To begin to move; to go out or forth; to start; -- now followed by out.
35. (v. i.) To indicate the position of game; -- said of a dog; as, the dog sets well; also, to hunt game by the aid of a setter.
36. (v. i.) To apply one's self; to undertake earnestly; -- now followed by out.
37. (v. i.) To fit or suit one; to sit; as, the coat sets well.
38. (a.) Fixed in position; immovable; rigid; as, a set line; a set countenance.
39. (a.) Firm; unchanging; obstinate; as, set opinions or prejudices.
40. (a.) Regular; uniform; formal; as, a set discourse; a set battle.
41. (a.) Established; prescribed; as, set forms of prayer.
42. (a.) Adjusted; arranged; formed; adapted.
43. (n.) The act of setting, as of the sun or other heavenly body; descent; hence, the close; termination.
44. (n.) That which is set, placed, or fixed.
45. (n.) A young plant for growth; as, a set of white thorn.
46. (n.) That which is staked; a wager; a venture; a stake; hence, a game at venture.
47. (n.) Permanent change of figure in consequence of excessive strain, as from compression, tension, bending, twisting, etc.; as, the set of a spring.
48. (n.) A kind of punch used for bending, indenting, or giving shape to, metal; as, a saw set.
49. (n.) A piece placed temporarily upon the head of a pile when the latter cannot be reached by the weight, or hammer, except by means of such an intervening piece.
50. (n.) A short steel spike used for driving the head of a nail below the surface.
51. (n.) A number of things of the same kind, ordinarily used or classed together; a collection of articles which naturally complement each other, and usually go together; an assortment; a suit; as, a set of chairs, of china, of surgical or mathematical instruments, of books, etc.
52. (n.) A number of persons associated by custom, office, common opinion, quality, or the like; a division; a group; a clique.
53. (n.) Direction or course; as, the set of the wind, or of a current.
54. (n.) In dancing, the number of persons necessary to execute a quadrille; also, the series of figures or movements executed.
55. (n.) The deflection of a tooth, or of the teeth, of a saw, which causes the saw to cut a kerf, or make an opening, wider than the blade.
56. (n.) A young oyster when first attached.
57. (n.) Collectively, the crop of young oysters in any locality.
58. (n.) A series of as many games as may be necessary to enable one side to win six. If at the end of the tenth game the score is a tie, the set is usually called a deuce set, and decided by an application of the rules for playing off deuce in a game. See Deuce.
59. (n.) That dimension of the body of a type called by printers the width.
Int. Standard Bible Encyclopedia
Few words in the English language have such a rich variety of meaning and are used in so rich a variety of idiomatic expression as the word "set." A glance at any of the great dictionaries will convince anyone of the truth of this statement. The Standard Dictionary devotes three and a half columns to the word. In its primary meaning it there denotes 22 distinct things, in its secondary meaning 17 more, while 18 distinct phrases are given in which it is used, in some cases again in a variety of meanings. It is indeed a word calculated to drive a foreigner to despair. Some 70 Hebrew and about 30 Greek words in the original tongues of the Holy Scriptures have been rendered by the word "set," in the King James Version and also in the Revised Version (British and American). A careful comparative study of the original and of translations in other tongues will at once indicate that a lack of discrimination is evident on the part of the English translators in the frequent use of the word "set."
Thus in Songs 5:14, "hands are as rings of gold set with beryl," the Hebrew word is male', "to be filled," "full." Vulgate (Jerome's Latin Bible, 390-405 A.D.) translates plenae, the Dutch gevuld, the German voll; Proverbs 8:27, "when he set a circle," Hebrew chaqaq, "to describe," "decree," Vulgate (Jerome's Latin Bible, 390-405 A.D.) vallabat, Dutch beschreef; Ezra 4:10, "set in the city of Samaria," Aramaic yethibh, "to cause to sit down," "to cause to dwell," Vulgate (Jerome's Latin Bible, 390-405 A.D.) habitare eas fecit, Dutch doen wonen; Psalm 2:6, "Yet have I set my king upon my holy hill," Hebrew nacakh, "to pour out," "to anoint," Dutch gezalfd; Isaiah 19:2, the King James Version "I will set the Egyptians against the Egyptians," Hebrew cakhakh, "to disturb," "to confuse," Vulgate (Jerome's Latin Bible, 390-405 A.D.) concurrere faciam, Dutch verwarren, German an einander setzen; Revelation 3:8, "I have, set before thee a door," Greek didomi, "to give," Vulgate (Jerome's Latin Bible, 390-405 A.D.) dedi coram te, Dutch gegeven, German gegeben; Acts 19:27, the King James Version "Our craft is in danger to be set at nought," Greek erchomai, "to come," Vulgate (Jerome's Latin Bible, 390-405 A.D.) periclitabitur, Dutch in verachting komen; Luke 4:18, "to set at liberty them," Greek apostello, "to send away," Dutch heen te zenden in vrijheid; Acts 13:9, the King James Version "Saul.... set his eyes on him," Greek atenizo, "to stare fixedly," Vulgate: intuens in eum, Dutch de oogen op hem houdende. These are but a few examples chosen at random where our English translators have rendered Hebrew and Greek words by "set," where a more literal translation, in equally good idiomatic language, was possible. The word "set" is the causative of "sit," and indicates primarily a power of self-support, in opposition to the idea of the word "lay."
(1) In its primary meaning the word "set" is used in our English Bible in many senses:
(a) Foundation: Songs 5:15, "His legs are as pillars of marble set upon."
(b) Direction: Ezekiel 21:16, "whithersoever thy face is set."
(c) Appointed time: Acts 12:21, "upon a set day."
(d) Fixed place: 2 Chronicles 20:17, "Set yourselves, stand ye still, and see"; 2 Samuel 6:17 Matthew 4:5.
(e) Cause to sit: 1 Samuel 2:8, the King James Version "to set them among princes"; 2 Chronicles 23:20 Psalm 68:6.
(f) Appointment: Ezra 7:25, the King James Version "set magistrates and judges"; Genesis 41:41 1 Samuel 12:13; Psalm 2:6 Daniel 1:11. (g) To lift up: Genesis 31:17, "set his sons and his wives upon."
(h) Appointed place: Genesis 1:17, "God set them in the firmament."
(i) Cause to stand: Genesis 47:7, "Joseph brought in Jacob.... and set him before Pharaoh"; Numbers 8:13 2 Chronicles 29:25.
(j) Sitting: Matthew 5:1, the King James Version "when he was set"; Hebrews 8:1 the King James Version.
(k) Location: Matthew 5:14, "a city set on a hill." These by no means exhaust the meaning which the word, in its primary sense, has in our English Bible.
(2) In a secondary or tropical sense it is used with equal frequency, usually with various prepositions. Thus,
(a) To attack: Judges 9:33, the King James Version "and set upon the city."
(b) To imprint: Genesis 4:15, the King James Version "The Lord set a mark upon Cain."
(c) To direct to: 1 Kings 2:15, "And that all Israel set their faces on me."
(d) To place: 1 Kings 20:12, Ben-hadad shouted one word to his allies: "Set," i.e. set the armies in array, the battering-rams and engines of attack in their place.
(e) To incline toward: Ezekiel 40:4, "Set thy heart upon all that I shall show."
(f) To trust in: Psalm 62:10, "If riches increase, set not your heart thereon."
(g) To place before: Psalm 90:8, "Thou hast set our iniquities before"; Psalm 141:3, "Set a watch, O Yahweh, before my mouth."
(h) To go down: of the setting of the sun (Mark 1:32 Luke 4:40).
(i) To be proud: Malachi 3:15, the King James Version "They that work wickedness are set up."
(j) To fill in: Exodus 35:9, "stones to be set, for the ephod."
(k) To plant: Mark 12:1, "set a hedge about it."
(l) To mock: Luke 23:11, "Herod.... set him at nought."
(m) To honor: 1 Samuel 18:30, "so that his name was much set by."
(n) To start: Acts 21:2, "We went aboard, and set sail." As may be seen the word is used in an endless variety of meanings.
Henry E. Dosker