Ex*pe"ri*ence, v. t. [imp. & p.
p. Experienced (-enst); p. pr. & vb.
n. Experiencing (-en-s?ng).]
1. To make practical acquaintance with; to try
personally; to prove by use or trial; to have trial of; to have the
lot or fortune of; to have befall one; to be affected by; to feel;
as, to experience pain or pleasure; to experience
poverty; to experience a change of views.
The partial failure and disappointment which he had
experienced in India. Thirwall.
2. To exercise; to train by
The youthful sailors thus with early care
Their arms experience, and for sea prepare.
To experience religion (Theol.), to
become a convert to the doctrines of Christianity; to yield to the
power of religious truth.
Ex*pe"ri*ence (?), n. [F.
expérience, L. experientia, tr.
experiens, -entis, p. pr. of experiri,
expertus, to try; ex out + the root of pertus
experienced. See Peril, and cf. Expert.]
1. Trial, as a test or experiment.
She caused him to make experience Spenser.
Upon wild beasts.
2. The effect upon the judgment or feelings
produced by any event, whether witnessed or participated in; personal
and direct impressions as contrasted with description or fancies;
personal acquaintance; actual enjoyment or suffering. "Guided
by other's experiences." Shak.
I have but one lamp by which my feet are guided, and
that is the lamp of experience. P.
To most men experience is like the stern lights
of a ship, which illumine only the track it has passed.
When the consuls . . . came in . . . they knew soon by
experience how slenderly guarded against danger the majesty of
rulers is where force is wanting. Holland.
Those that undertook the religion of our Savior upon
his preaching, had no experience of it.
3. An act of knowledge, one or more, by which
single facts or general truths are ascertained; experimental or
inductive knowledge; hence, implying skill, facility, or practical
wisdom gained by personal knowledge, feeling or action; as, a king
without experience of war.
Whence hath the mind all the materials of reason and
knowledge? To this I answer in one word, from
Experience may be acquired in two ways; either,
first by noticing facts without any attempt to influence the
frequency of their occurrence or to vary the circumstances under
which they occur; this is observation; or, secondly, by
putting in action causes or agents over which we have control, and
purposely varying their combinations, and noticing what effects take
place; this is experiment. Sir J.