Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary (1913 + 1828)


Displaying 1 result(s) from the 1913 edition:
Vanity (Page: 1594)

Van"i*ty (?), n.; pl. Vanities (#). [OE. vanite, vanité, L. vanitas, fr. vanus empty, vain. See Vain.]

1. The quality or state of being vain; want of substance to satisfy desire; emptiness; unsubstantialness; unrealness; falsity.

Vanity of vanities, saith the Preacher, vanity of vanities; all is vanity. Eccl. i. 2.
Here I may well show the vanity of that which is reported in the story of Walsingham. Sir J. Davies.

2. An inflation of mind upon slight grounds; empty pride inspired by an overweening conceit of one's personal attainments or decorations; an excessive desire for notice or approval; pride; ostentation; conceit.

The exquisitely sensitive vanity of Garrick was galled. Macaulay.

3. That which is vain; anything empty, visionary, unreal, or unsubstantial; fruitless desire or effort; trifling labor productive of no good; empty pleasure; vain pursuit; idle show; unsubstantial enjoyment.

Vanity of vanities, saith the Preacher. Eccl. i. 2.
Vanity possesseth many who are desirous to know the certainty of things to come. Sir P. Sidney.
[Sin] with vanity had filled the works of men. Milton.
Think not, when woman's transient breath is fled, That all her vanities at once are dead; Succeeding vanities she still regards. Pope.

4. One of the established characters in the old moralities and puppet shows. See Morality, n., 5.

You . . . take vanity the puppet's part. Shak.
Syn. -- Egotism; pride; emptiness; worthlessness; self-sufficiency. See Egotism, and Pride.