Hypertext Webster Gateway: "skill"

From Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary (1913) (web1913)

Skill \Skill\, n. [Icel. skil a distinction, discernment; akin
to skilja to separate, divide, distinguish, Sw. skilja,.
skille to separate, skiel reason, right, justice, Sw. sk["a]l
reason, Lith. skelli to cleave. Cf. {Shell}, {Shoal}, a
1. Discrimination; judgment; propriety; reason; cause. [Obs.]
--Shak. ``As it was skill and right.'' --Chaucer.

For great skill is, he prove that he wrought. [For
with good reason he should test what he created.]

2. Knowledge; understanding. [Obsoles.]

That by his fellowship he color might Both his
estate and love from skill of any wight. --Spenser.

Nor want we skill or art. --Milton.

3. The familiar knowledge of any art or science, united with
readiness and dexterity in execution or performance, or in
the application of the art or science to practical
purposes; power to discern and execute; ability to
perceive and perform; expertness; aptitude; as, the skill
of a mathematician, physician, surgeon, mechanic, etc.

Phocion, . . . by his great wisdom and skill at
negotiations, diverted Alexander from the conquest
of Athens. --Swift.

Where patience her sweet skill imparts. --Keble.

4. Display of art; exercise of ability; contrivance; address.

Richard . . . by a thousand princely skills,
gathering so much corn as if he meant not to return.

5. Any particular art. [Obs.]

Learned in one skill, and in another kind of
learning unskillful. --Hooker.

Syn: Dexterity; adroitness; expertness; art; aptitude;

Usage: {Skill}, {Dexterity}, {Adroitness}. Skill is more
intelligent, denoting familiar knowledge united to
readiness of performance. Dexterity, when applied to
the body, is more mechanical, and refers to habitual
ease of execution. Adroitness involves the same image
with dexterity, and differs from it as implaying a
general facility of movement (especially in avoidance
of danger or in escaping from a difficalty). The same
distinctions apply to the figurative sense of the
words. A man is skillful in any employment when he
understands both its theory and its practice. He is
dexterous when he maneuvers with great lightness. He
is adroit in the use od quick, sudden, and
well-directed movements of the body or the mind, so as
to effect the object he has in view.

From Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary (1913) (web1913)

Skill \Skill\, v. i.
1. To be knowing; to have understanding; to be dexterous in
performance. [Obs.]

I can not skill of these thy ways. --Herbert.

2. To make a difference; to signify; to matter; -- used
impersonally. --Spenser.

What skills it, if a bag of stones or gold About thy
neck do drown thee? --Herbert.

It skills not talking of it. --Sir W.

From Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary (1913) (web1913)

Skill \Skill\, v. t.
To know; to understand. [Obs.]

To skill the arts of expressing our mind. --Barrow.

From WordNet (r) 1.7 (wn)

n 1: an ability that has been acquired by training [syn: {accomplishment},
{acquirement}, {acquisition}, {attainment}]
2: ability to produce solutions in some problem domain; "the
skill of a well-trained boxer"; "the sweet science of
pugilism" [syn: {science}]

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