Hypertext Webster Gateway: "tell"

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

Tell \Tell\, v. t. [imp. & p. p. {Told}; p. pr. & vb. n.
{Telling}.] [AS. tellan, from talu tale, number, speech; akin
to D. tellen to count, G. z["a]hlen, OHG. zellen to count,
tell, say, Icel. telja, Dan. tale to speak, t[ae]lle to
count. See {Tale} that which is told.]
1. To mention one by one, or piece by piece; to recount; to
enumerate; to reckon; to number; to count; as, to tell
money. ``An heap of coin he told.'' --Spenser.

He telleth the number of the stars. --Ps. cxlvii.

Tell the joints of the body. --Jer. Taylor.

2. To utter or recite in detail; to give an account of; to

Of which I shall tell all the array. --Chaucer.

And not a man appears to tell their fate. --Pope.

3. To make known; to publish; to disclose; to divulge.

Why didst thou not tell me that she was thy wife?
--Gen. xii.

4. To give instruction to; to make report to; to acquaint; to
teach; to inform.

A secret pilgrimage, That you to-day promised to
tell me of? --Shak.

5. To order; to request; to command.

He told her not to be frightened. --Dickens.

6. To discern so as to report; to ascertain by observing; to
find out; to discover; as, I can not tell where one color
ends and the other begins.

7. To make account of; to regard; to reckon; to value; to
estimate. [Obs.]

I ne told no dainity of her love. --Chaucer.

Note: Tell, though equivalent in some respect to speak and
say, has not always the same application. We say, to
tell truth or falsehood, to tell a number, to tell the
reasons, to tell something or nothing; but we never
say, to tell a speech, discourse, or oration, or to
tell an argument or a lesson. It is much used in
commands; as, tell me the whole story; tell me all you

{To tell off}, to count; to divide. --Sir W. Scott.

Syn: To communicate; impart; reveal; disclose; inform;
acquaint; report; repeat; rehearse; recite.

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

Tell \Tell\, v. i.
1. To give an account; to make report.

That I may publish with the voice of thankgiving,
and tell of all thy wondrous works. --Ps. xxvi. 7.

2. To take effect; to produce a marked effect; as, every shot
tells; every expression tells.

{To tell of}.
(a) To speak of; to mention; to narrate or describe.
(b) To inform against; to disclose some fault of.

{To tell on}, to inform against. [Archaic & Colloq.]

Lest they should tell on us, saying, So did David.
--1 Sam.
xxvii. 11.

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

Tell \Tell\, n.
That which is told; tale; account. [R.]

I am at the end of my tell. --Walpole.

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

Tell \Tell\, n. [Ar.]
A hill or mound. --W. M. Thomson.

From WordNet (r) 1.7 (wn)

n : a Swiss patriot who lived in the early 14th century and who
was renowned for his skill as an archer; according to
legend an Austrian governor compelled him to shoot an
apple from his son's head with his crossbow (which he did
successfully without mishap) [syn: {Tell}, {William Tell}]
v 1: express an idea, etc. in words; "He said that he wanted to
marry her"; "tell me what is bothering you"; "state your
opinion" [syn: {state}, {say}]
2: let something be known; "Tell them that you will be late"
3: narrate or give a detailed account of; "Tell what happened";
"The father told a story to his child" [syn: {narrate}, {recount},
{spin}, {recite}]
4: give instructions to or direct somebody to do something; "I
said to him to go home"; "She ordered him to do the
shopping"; "The mother told the child to get dressed"
[syn: {order}, {enjoin}, {say}]
5: discern or comprehend; "He could tell that she was unhappy"
6: inform positively and with certainty and confidence; "I tell
you that man is a crook!" [syn: {assure}]
7: give evidence; "he was telling on all his former colleague"
[syn: {evidence}]
8: mark as different; "We distinguish several kinds of maple"
[syn: {distinguish}, {separate}, {differentiate}, {secern},
{secernate}, {severalize}, {tell apart}]

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