Sunday, March 20, 2011


adumbrate [əˈdʌmbreɪt] v.t.

1.) To represent the shadow of (anything), to draw or figure in outline; to outline; to sketch; to give a faint indication of.
2.) Fig. To represent a substance by its ‘shadow’ or emblem; to shadow forth, to typify; hence, to foreshadow, prefigure, as ‘coming events cast their shadows before.’
3.) To overshadow; to shade, obscure (Oxford English Dictionary, 2nd Edition).

Etymology: Latin adumbrāt-, participle stem of adumbrāre, to overshadow, to shade, to shadow out; from ad, to + umbrāre, to shade.

"Her plentious haire in curled billowes swims
On her bright shoulder: her harmonious lims
Sustainde no more but a most subtile vaile
That hung on them, as it durst not assaile
Their different concord: for the weakest ayre
Could raise it swelling from her bewties fayre:
Nor did it cover, but adumbrate onelie
Her most heart-piercing parts, that a blest eie
Might see (as it did shadow) fearfullie,
All that all-love-deserving Paradise:
It was as blew as the most freezing skies,
Neere the Seas hew, for thence her Goddesse came:
On it a skarfe she wore of wondrous frame;
In midst whereof she wrought a virgins face,
From whose each cheeke a fine blush did chace
Two crimson flames, that did two waies extend,
Spreading the ample skarfe to either end,
Which figur'd the division of her minde,
Whiles yet she rested bashfully inclinde,
And stood not resolute to wed Leander."
(Hero and Leander, Christopher Marlowe and George Chapman, 1598)

(Hero en Leander, Nicolas Régnier, 1626)

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