Lead, v. t. [imp. & p.
p. Leaded; p. pr. & vb. n.
Leading.] 1. To cover, fill, or affect
with lead; as, continuous firing leads the grooves of a
2. (Print.) To place leads between the
lines of; as, to lead a page; leaded matter.
Lead (?), n. 1.
(Music.) (a) The announcement by one voice
part of a theme to be repeated by the other parts.
(b) A mark or a short passage in one voice part,
as of a canon, serving as a cue for the entrance of others.
2. In an internal-combustion engine, the
distance, measured in actual length of piston stroke or the
corresponding angular displacement of the crank, of the piston from
the end of the compression stroke when ignition takes place; -- called
in full lead of the ignition. When ignition takes
place during the working stroke the corresponding distance from the
commencement of the stroke is called negative
3. (Mach.) The excess above a right
angle in the angle between two consecutive cranks, as of a compound
engine, on the same shaft.
4. (Mach.) In spiral screw threads,
worm wheels, or the like, the amount of advance of any point in the
spiral for a complete turn.
5. (Elec.) (a) A
conductor conveying electricity, as from a dynamo.
(b) The angle between the line joining the
brushes of a continuous-current dynamo and the diameter symmetrical
between the poles. (c) The advance of the
current phase in an alternating circuit beyond that of the
electromotive force producing it.
6. (Theat.) A rôle for a leading
man or leading woman; also, one who plays such a rôle.
Lead (lĕd), n. [OE. led,
leed, lead, AS. leÁd; akin to D.
lood, MHG. lōt, G. loth plummet, sounding
lead, small weight, Sw. & Dan. lod. √123.]
1. (Chem.) One of the elements, a heavy,
pliable, inelastic metal, having a bright, bluish color, but easily
tarnished. It is both malleable and ductile, though with little
tenacity, and is used for tubes, sheets, bullets, etc. Its specific
gravity is 11.37. It is easily fusible, forms alloys with other
metals, and is an ingredient of solder and type metal. Atomic weight,
206.4. Symbol Pb (L. Plumbum). It is chiefly obtained from the
mineral galena, lead sulphide.
2. An article made of lead or an alloy of
lead; as: (a) A plummet or mass of lead,
used in sounding at sea. (b) (Print.)
A thin strip of type metal, used to separate lines of type in
printing. (c) Sheets or plates of lead
used as a covering for roofs; hence, pl., a roof covered with
lead sheets or terne plates.
I would have the tower two stories, and goodly
leads upon the top. Bacon
3. A small cylinder of black lead or
plumbago, used in pencils.
Black lead, graphite or plumbago; -- so
called from its leadlike appearance and streak. [Colloq.] --
Coasting lead, a sounding lead intermediate in
weight between a hand lead and deep-sea lead. -- Deep-
sea lead, the heaviest of sounding leads, used in water
exceeding a hundred fathoms in depth. Ham. Nav. Encyc. --
Hand lead, a small lead use for sounding in
shallow water. -- Krems lead, Kremnitz
lead [so called from Krems or Kremnitz, in
Austria], a pure variety of white lead, formed into tablets, and
called also Krems, or Kremnitz, white, and Vienna
white. -- Lead arming, tallow put in
the hollow of a sounding lead. See To arm the lead
(below). -- Lead colic. See under
Colic. -- Lead color, a deep bluish
gray color, like tarnished lead. -- Lead
glance. (Min.) Same as Galena. --
Lead line (a) (Med.) A
dark line along the gums produced by a deposit of metallic lead, due
to lead poisoning. (b) (Naut.) A
sounding line. -- Lead mill, a leaden
polishing wheel, used by lapidaries. -- Lead
ocher (Min.), a massive sulphur-yellow oxide of
lead. Same as Massicot. -- Lead pencil,
a pencil of which the marking material is graphite (black
lead). -- Lead plant (Bot.), a low
leguminous plant, genus Amorpha (A. canescens), found
in the Northwestern United States, where its presence is supposed to
indicate lead ore. Gray. -- Lead tree.
(a) (Bot.) A West Indian name for the
tropical, leguminous tree, Leucæna glauca; -- probably
so called from the glaucous color of the foliage.
(b) (Chem.) Lead crystallized in
arborescent forms from a solution of some lead salt, as by suspending
a strip of zinc in lead acetate. -- Mock lead,
a miner's term for blende. -- Red lead,
a scarlet, crystalline, granular powder, consisting of minium
when pure, but commonly containing several of the oxides of lead. It
is used as a paint or cement and also as an ingredient of flint
glass. -- Red lead ore (Min.),
crocoite. -- Sugar of lead, acetate of
lead. -- To arm the lead, to fill the
hollow in the bottom of a sounding lead with tallow in order to
discover the nature of the bottom by the substances adhering.
Ham. Nav. Encyc. -- To cast, or
heave, the lead, to cast the sounding
lead for ascertaining the depth of water. -- White
lead, hydrated carbonate of lead, obtained as a white,
amorphous powder, and much used as an ingredient of white
Lead, n. 1. The
act of leading or conducting; guidance; direction; as, to take the
lead; to be under the lead of another.
At the time I speak of, and having a momentary
lead, . . . I am sure I did my country important
2. Precedence; advance position; also, the
measure of precedence; as, the white horse had the lead; a
lead of a boat's length, or of half a second.
3. (Cards & Dominoes) The act or right
of playing first in a game or round; the card suit, or piece, so
played; as, your partner has the lead.
4. An open way in an ice field.
5. (Mining) A lode.
6. (Naut.) The course of a rope from
end to end.
7. (Steam Engine) The width of port
opening which is uncovered by the valve, for the admission or release
of steam, at the instant when the piston is at end of its
☞ When used alone it means outside lead, or lead for
the admission of steam. Inside lead refers to the release or
8. (Civil Engineering) the distance of
haul, as from a cutting to an embankment.
9. (Horology) The action of a tooth,
as a tooth of a wheel, in impelling another tooth or a pallet.
Lead angle (Steam Engine), the angle
which the crank maker with the line of centers, in approaching it, at
the instant when the valve opens to admit steam. -- Lead
screw (Mach.), the main longitudinal screw of a
lathe, which gives the feed motion to the carriage.
Lead (?), v. i. 1.
To guide or conduct, as by accompanying, going before, showing,
influencing, directing with authority, etc.; to have precedence or
preëminence; to be first or chief; -- used in most of the senses
of lead, v. t.
2. To tend or reach in a certain direction,
or to a certain place; as, the path leads to the mill;
gambling leads to other vices.
The mountain foot that leads towards
To lead off or out, to go
first; to begin.
Lead (lēd), v. t. [imp. &
p. p. Led (lĕd); p. pr. & vb.
n. Leading.] [OE. leden, AS.
lǣdan (akin to OS. lēdian, D.
leiden, G. leiten, Icel. leīða, Sw.
leda, Dan. lede), properly a causative fr. AS.
liðan to go; akin to OHG. līdan, Icel.
līða, Goth. leiþan (in comp.). Cf.
Lode, Loath.] 1. To guide or
conduct with the hand, or by means of some physical contact or
connection; as, a father leads a child; a jockey leads
a horse with a halter; a dog leads a blind man.
If a blind man lead a blind man, both fall down
in the ditch. Wyclif (Matt. xv. 14.)
They thrust him out of the city, and led him
unto the brow of the hill. Luke iv. 29.
In thy right hand lead with thee Milton.
The mountain nymph, sweet Liberty.
2. To guide or conduct in a certain course,
or to a certain place or end, by making the way known; to show the
way, esp. by going with or going in advance of. Hence, figuratively:
To direct; to counsel; to instruct; as, to lead a traveler; to
lead a pupil.
The Lord went before them by day in a pillar of a
cloud, to lead them the way. Ex. xiii.
He leadeth me beside the still
waters. Ps. xxiii. 2.
This thought might lead me through the world's
Content, though blind, had I no better guide.
3. To conduct or direct with authority; to
have direction or charge of; as, to lead an army, an exploring
party, or a search; to lead a political party.
Christ took not upon him flesh and blood that he might
conquer and rule nations, lead armies, or possess
4. To go or to be in advance of; to precede;
hence, to be foremost or chief among; as, the big sloop led
the fleet of yachts; the Guards led the attack; Demosthenes
leads the orators of all ages.
As Hesperus, that leads the sun his
And lo ! Ben Adhem's name led all the
rest. Leigh Hunt.
5. To draw or direct by influence, whether
good or bad; to prevail on; to induce; to entice; to allure; as, to
lead one to espouse a righteous cause.
He was driven by the necessities of the times, more
than led by his own disposition, to any rigor of
actions. Eikon Basilike.
Silly women, laden with sins, led away by
divers lusts. 2 Tim. iii. 6 (Rev. Ver.).
6. To guide or conduct one's self in,
through, or along (a certain course); hence, to proceed in the way
of; to follow the path or course of; to pass; to spend. Also, to
cause (one) to proceed or follow in (a certain course).
That we may lead a quiet and peaceable
life. 1 Tim. ii. 2.
Nor thou with shadowed hint confuse
A life that leads melodious days.
You remember . . . the life he used to lead his
wife and daughter. Dickens.
7. (Cards & Dominoes) To begin a game,
round, or trick, with; as, to lead trumps; the double five was
To lead astray, to guide in a wrong way, or
into error; to seduce from truth or rectitude. -- To
lead captive, to carry or bring into captivity. --
To lead the way, to show the way by going in
front; to act as guide. Goldsmith.