Half (häf), n.; pl.
Halves (hävz). [AS. healf. See
Half, a.] 1. Part;
side; behalf. [Obs.] Wyclif.
The four halves of the house.
2. One of two equal parts into which anything
may be divided, or considered as divided; -- sometimes followed by
of; as, a half of an apple.
Not half his riches known, and yet
A friendship so complete
Portioned in halves between us.
Better half. See under Better. -
- In half, in two; an expression sometimes used
improperly instead of in or into halves; as, to cut in
half. [Colloq.] Dickens. -- In, or
On, one's half, in one's behalf; on
one's part. [Obs.] -- To cry halves, to
claim an equal share with another. -- To go
halves, to share equally between two.
Half (häf), a. [AS. healf,
half, half; as a noun, half, side, part; akin to OS., OFries.,
& D. half, G. halb, Sw. half, Dan. halv,
Icel. hālfr, Goth. halbs. Cf. Halve,
Behalf.] 1. Consisting of a moiety, or
half; as, a half bushel; a half hour; a half
dollar; a half view.
☞ The adjective and noun are often united to form a
2. Consisting of some indefinite portion
resembling a half; approximately a half, whether more or less;
partial; imperfect; as, a half dream; half
Assumed from thence a half
Half ape (Zoöl.), a lemur.
-- Half back. (Football) See under 2d
Back. -- Half bent, the first
notch, for the sear point to enter, in the tumbler of a gunlock; the
halfcock notch. -- Half binding, a style
of bookbinding in which only the back and corners are in
leather. -- Half boarder, one who boards
in part; specifically, a scholar at a boarding school who takes
dinner only. -- Half-breadth plan
(Shipbuilding), a horizontal plan of one half a vessel,
divided lengthwise, showing the lines. -- Half
cadence (Mus.), a cadence on the dominant.
-- Half cap, a slight salute with the cap.
[Obs.] Shak. -- At half cock, the
position of the cock of a gun when retained by the first notch.
-- Half hitch, a sailor's knot in a rope; half
of a clove hitch. -- Half hose, short
stockings; socks. -- Half measure, an
imperfect or weak line of action. -- Half note
(Mus.), a minim, one half of a semibreve. --
Half pay, half of the wages or salary; reduced
pay; as, an officer on half pay. -- Half
price, half the ordinary price; or a price much
reduced. -- Half round. (a)
(Arch.) A molding of semicircular section.
(b) (Mech.) Having one side flat and the
other rounded; -- said of a file. -- Half
shift (Mus.), a position of the hand, between
the open position and the first shift, in playing on the violin and
kindred instruments. See Shift. -- Half
step (Mus.), a semitone; the smallest difference
of pitch or interval, used in music. -- Half
tide, the time or state of the tide equally distant
from ebb and flood. -- Half time, half the
ordinary time for work or attendance; as, the half-time
system. -- Half tint (Fine Arts), a
middle or intermediate tint, as in drawing or painting. See
Demitint. -- Half truth, a
statement only partially true, or which gives only a part of the
truth. Mrs. Browning. -- Half year,
the space of six months; one term of a school when there are two
terms in a year.
Half, v. t. To halve. [Obs.] See
Halve. Sir H. Wotton.
Half, adv. In an equal part or
degree; in some part approximating a half; partially; imperfectly;
as, half-colored, half done, half-hearted,
half persuaded, half conscious. "Half loth
and half consenting." Dryden.
Their children spoke halfin the speech of
Ashdod. Neh. xiii. 24.