From the second edition (1989):
soul, n.
(səʊl) Forms: α. 1 sawol, -al, 1–2 sawul, 1, 4 sawel (1 sauwel, 4 saw-, sauwil), 1, 4–6 sawl (5–6 sawll, 9 dial. sawl, seawl, zawl, etc.), 2–6 sawle; 1, 4 sauel (4 -il), 3–7 (9 dial.) saule (3 sæule, 4 zaule, 5 savle); 1, 4–5, 6–9 Sc. and north. saul, 5–7 Sc. and north. saull; 5 sal, saal, 5–6 sale, 5–6 (9 dial.) sall (6 salle). β. 2–7 sowle, 5 sowel, 5–6 sowylle, 6 sowll, 8 Ir. showl, 9 dial. sowl; 3–7 soule (6 zoule, soulle), 5– soul (8 dial. saoul); 5 sool (6 sooll), 5–6 solle, 6–8 (9 dial.) sole, 7 sol. [Common Teut.: OE. sáwol, sáwel, sáwl, etc., = Goth. saiwala; the forms in the other languages show various degrees of contraction, as OHG. sêula, sêla (MHG. sêle, G. seele), OS. sêola (siola; MLG. sêle, LG. seele, seel), OLFrank. sêla, sîla (MDu. siel-e, ziel-e, Du. ziel), OFris. sêle (siele; WFris. siel, NFris. seel, sial, etc.); ON. sála, sál (Icel. sál, Norw. dial. saal), MSw. sial, siäl, siel (Sw. sjȧl, Da. sjæl), whence Finn. sielu, Lapp. siello, etc. The ultimate etymology is uncertain.
For examples of the older genitive form without -s, see 18.]


I.1. The principle of life in man or animals; animate existence. Obs. (freq. in OE. in Scriptural passages).

Beowulf 2820 Him of hreðre ewat sawol secean soðfæstra dom. c825 Vesp. Psalter lxxvii. 50 [He ne] spearede from deaðe sawlum heara. c1000 Ags. Ps. (Thorpe) xxxii. 16 For~þam þæt he efriðie heora sawla fram deaðe, and hi fede on hungres tide. 1382 Wyclif Jonah i. 14 Lord, we bisechen, that we perishe not in the soule of this man. a1450 tr. De Imitatione i. xviii. 20 For þei hated her soules, þat is to say, her bodely lyues, þat þei miȝt kepe hem in to lif euer~lasting. 1535 Coverdale Judg. xii. 3 Whan I sawe yt there was no helper, I put my soule in my honde, and wente agaynst the children of Ammon. 1611 Bible Gen. xxxv. 18 As her soule was in departing, (for she died). [1651 Hobbes Leviath. iii. xxxviii. 241 Soule and Life in the Scripture, do usually signifie the same thing.] 1697 Dryden Virg. Georg. iii. 744 The thriven Calves‥render their sweet Souls before the plenteous Rack.


2. a. The principle of thought and action in man, commonly regarded as an entity distinct from the body; the spiritual part of man in contrast to the purely physical. Also occas., the corresponding or analogous principle in animals. Freq. in connexion with, or in contrast to, body.
Sometimes personified, as in the common mediæval dialogues between the soul and the body.

α c888 K. Ælfred Boeth. xxxiv. §6 To þære saule & to þæm lichoman, belimpað ealle þas þæs monnes good e gastlicu e lichomlicu. 971 Blickl. Hom. 21 Eal swa hwæt swa se esenelica lichama deþ oþþe wyrceþ, eal þæt deþ seo unesynelice sawl þurh þone lichoman. c1000 Ælfric Hom. I. 16 Se man is ece on anum dæle, þæt is on ðære sawle. c1200 Ormin 11498 Swa þatt te manness bodiȝ beo Buhsumm forþ wiþþ þe sawle. a1300 Cursor M. 21757 (Edin.), Þe Sawil it hauis of strenþis þrin. 1340 Ayenb. 105 Þri þinges þet byeþ ine þe zaule, beþenchinge, onderstondynge, and wyl. a1400–50 Alexander 4429 All þe sauour of ȝoure sauls is sattild in ȝour mouthis. 1483 Cath. Angl. 319 A Savle, anima. 1599 A. Hume Hymns i. 21 My sensis, and my saull I saw, Debait a deadly strife. 1737 Gentl. Mag. VII. 50 The coward lurks in Jockey's saul.
β c1175 in Fragm. Ælfric's Gloss., etc. (1838) 6 Ȝet sæiþ þeo sowle soriliche to þen licame [etc.]. 12‥ Moral Ode 394 To þere blisse us bringe god‥þenne he vre soule vn-bint of licames bende. c1386 Chaucer Prol. 656 But if [= unless] a mannes soule were in his purs. 1422 tr. Secreta Secret., Priv. Priv. 218 Here is i-prowid that the Sowle sueth the condycionys of the bodyes. c1440 Jacob's Well 258 As þi soule is lyif of þi body, so is god lyif of þi soule. a1547 Surrey Eccl. iii. Poems (1810) 355 Who can tell yf that the sowle of man ascende, Or with the body of it dye? 1596 Shakes. Merch. V. iv. i. 132 To hold opinion‥That soules of Animals infuse themselues Into the trunkes of men. 1621 Hakewill David's Vow 120 It is‥vanity, to thinke that all passions either may be or should be utterly rooted out of the soule. 1681 J. Flavel Meth. Grace v. 111 If there be spiritual sense in your souls, there is spiritual life in them. 1716–8 Lady M. W. Montagu Lett. I. xxxix. 159 Our vulgar notion that they do not own women to have any souls, is a mistake. 1774 Goldsm. Nat. Hist. (1776) II. 207 It must be dreadful,‥since it is sufficient to separate the soul from the body. 1841 Dickens Barn. Rudge iii, The absence of the soul is far more terrible in a living man than in a dead one. 1868 Helps Realmah ix. (1876) 247, I mean that there should be a double soul, taking the word ‘soul’ to include all powers, both of thought and feeling. 1897 M. Kingsley W. Africa 441, I know many people have doubts as to the existence of souls in small boys of this class.
fig. 1829 Carlyle Misc. (1857) II. 106 Thus is the Body-politic, more than ever worshipped and tendered; but the Soul-politic less than ever.


b. Without article.

c1000 Ælfric Hom. I. 276 Fixas and fuelas he esceop on flæsce butan sawle. 13‥ E.E Allit. P. B. 290 Al schal doun & be ded & dryuen out of erþe, Þat euer I sette saule inne. c1374 Chaucer Troylus ii. 1734, I coniure‥On his half, which that sowle us alle sende. c1430 Hymns Virgin (1867) 102 In soule oonli þou wente to helle. 1535 Coverdale Wisd. xiv. 29 Idols (which haue nether sole ner vnderstondinge). 1692 Bentley Boyle Lect. i. 13 That all their Thoughts, and the whole of what they call Soul, are only various Action and Repercussion of small particles of Matter. 1727–46 Thomson Summer 774 There on the breezy summit‥let me draw Ethereal soul. 1813 Byron Giaour 93 So coldly sweet, so deadly fair, We start, for soul is wanting there. 1884 Browning Ferishtah, Eagle 47 God is soul, souls I and thou.


c. Coupled with body or life. (Without article.)

c888 K. Ælfred Boeth. xxxiv §9 Ic wat þæt hit bið sawl & lichoma. a1175 Cott. Hom. 221 He warð þa man ȝesceapen on sawle and on lichame. c1200 Ormin 2544 To wurrþenn filledd‥I bodiȝ & i sawle Off Godess Gastess hallȝhe mahht. a1300 Cursor M. 23903 (Edin.), Lif and sawel I yeld hir til. c1340 Hampole Pr. Consc. 129 How wake man es in saul and body. c1450 Holland Howlat 739 Bot all committis to the, Saull and lyf, ladye! 1526 Pilgr. Perf. (W. de W. 1531) 25 Whan man offreth hymselfe hole to almyghty god, bothe soule & body. 1567 Gude & Godlie B. (S.T.S.) 10 Baith Saule and body to defend. 1753 J. Collier Art Torment. ii. ii. (1811) 127 By never letting him see you swallow half enough to keep body and soul together. 1831 Scott Cast. Dang. ix, I can hardly get so much for mine as will hold soul and body together.
Comb. 1817 Coleridge Biog. Lit. (Bohn) viii. 64 To fall back into the common rank of soul-and-bodyists.


Also in Naut. phr. soul and body lashing (see quot. 1962).

1903 C. Protheroe Life in Mercantile Marine 150 The best method of arranging his oil-skins to keep the water out,‥known as a ‘soul and body lashing’. 1936 B. Adams Ships & Women iv. 87 All wore rope yarns tightly tied about wrists and ankles.‥ We call those rope yarns ‘soul and body lashings’. 1962 A. G. Course Dict. Naut. Terms 182 Soul and body lashings, rope yarns tied round the waist and sleeves of oilskin jackets, and round the bottom of oilskin trousers, to prevent the water, from seas crashing on board, getting under the oilskins. They also prevented the wind from ballooning up inside the oilskins.


d. soul and conscience: in Sc. Law, the formula by which medical testimony in writing is authenticated; also attrib. (see quot. 1976).

1892 A. M. Anderson Criminal Law of Scotland v. xiii. 252 Medical reports are made on soul and conscience, read at the trial, and sworn to as true. 1925 W. J. Lewis Manual of Law of Evidence in Scotland iii. ii. 84 Medical certificates on soul and conscience, apparently holograph, appear, in non-contentious matters, to be generally accepted without further evidence. 1976 L. Kennedy Presumption of Innocence iii. 147 There was a soul and conscience certificate in relation to Mrs Carmichael; this meant that a doctor had sworn on his soul and conscience that she was unfit to attend the court.


3. a. The seat of the emotions, feelings, or sentiments; the emotional part of man's nature.
For the phr. heart and soul, see heart n. 52.

c825 Vesp. Psalter vi. 4 edroefed sindun all ban min, & sawl min edroefed is swiðe. c950 Lindisf. Gosp. Matt. xxvi. 38 Unrot is sauel min‥oð deaðe. 13‥ E.E. Allit. P. C. 325 When þacces of anguych was hid in my sawle. c1400 Destr. Troy 10768 Hit wold haue persit with pyte any pure sawle‥hor torfer to se. c1420 in 26 Pol. Poems 108 My soul of my self anoyed isse. 1553 N. Grimalde Cicero's Offices (1600) Aiij, Of the soule, or life endued with sences, pleasures is the ende that it would enioy. 1599 Shakes. Much Ado ii. iii. 60 Now is his soule rauisht, is it not strange that sheepes guts should hale soules out of mens bodies? 1667 Milton P.L. ii. 556 For Eloquence the Soul, Song charms the Sense. 1697 Dryden Virg. Past. viii. 113 Such let the Soul of cruel Daphnis be; Hard to the rest of Women; soft to me. 1794 Mrs. Radcliffe Myst. Udolpho xlviii, Valancourt seemed to be annihilated, and her soul sickened at the blank that remained. 1805 Scott Last Minstr. vi. i, Breathes there the man, with soul so dead, Who never to himself hath said [etc.]. 1857 Maurice Epist. St. John ii. 24 We say sometimes of a speech which strikes us as very sincere and very powerful, ‘The speaker threw his whole soul into it’. 1874 M. Creighton Hist. Ess. i. (1902) 2 Shakespeare‥became in soul one with the mighty prince as with the lowly peasant.


b. Intellectual or spiritual power; high development of the mental faculties. Also in somewhat weakened use, deep feeling, sensitivity.

1604 Shakes. Oth. i. i. 54 These Fellowes haue some soule. 1702 Pope Wife of Bath 299 The mouse that always trusts to one poor hole, Can never be a mouse of any soul. 1748 Richardson Clarissa VI. 169, I never saw so much soul in a lady's eyes, as in hers. 1823 Byron Juan xiv. lxxi. 150 But there was something wanting on the whole—I don't know what, and therefore cannot tell—Which pretty women—the sweet souls!—call Soul. 1828 Lytton Pelham xvi, The women love soul, Monsieur—something intellectual and spiritual always attracts them. 1853 —— My Novel III. ix. iii. 22 Oh, no! no picture of miserable, vicious, Parisian life. This is beautiful; there is soul here. 1873 M. Arnold Lit. & Dogma (1876) 49 What man of soul‥but would prefer to say [etc.]. 1888 Pater Appreciations, Style (1889) 22 As a quality of style,‥soul is a fact. 1904 F. H. Jackson Mural Painting 21 Benozzo Gozzoli‥filled his long life with the production of the most charming wall-paintings, which, if he had had what is often called ‘soul’, would have placed him very near the summit of the Palace of Art.


4. a. The emotional or spiritual quality of Black American life and culture, manifested esp. in music (see quot. 1973).

1946 Ebony Sept. 34/2 He uses a bewildering, unorthodox technique and his playing is full of what jazzmen refer to as ‘soul’. 1954 Grove's Dict. Mus. (ed. 5) IV. 600/2 Louis Armstrong declared that ‘Anything played with beat and soul is jazz.’ 1964 Amer. Folk Music Occasional i. 17 It's just really rough what the colored entertainers have to go through sometimes.‥ That's why the colored people sing the blues; that's why they sing with soul. 1973 S. Henderson Understanding New Black Poetry 74 In the late 1950's the word ‘Soul’ surfaced in the musical community and quickly spread to the wider Black Community, where it came to mean not only a special kind of popular music‥but also‥‘racial spirit’ and ‘racial flavor’.‥ The word is losing some of its popularity now.


b. ellipt. for soul music (b), see sense 26 below.

1961 [see funk n.2 2]. 1968 P. Oliver Screening Blues ii. 46 The distinction between gospel music and the most recent development of blues and rock 'n roll—soul—is one of content rather than style. 1975 New Yorker 28 Apr. 6/3 She's lately been branching out from a strict regimen of blues and folk songs‥to include some rock, soul, and Nashville-inspired ditties. 1979 Radio Times 19 July 60/1 The word ‘soul’ probably originated with Ray Charles.‥ Soul is the music of experience.‥ It's one person's heart speaking to another person's.


c. attrib. passing into adj. (a) Characteristic of or pertaining to Black people or culture; (b) of or pertaining to soul music (sense (b)).

1962 John o' London's 1 Feb. 113/3 Feldman is not really a soul-merchant. 1968 N.Y. Times 17 June 46 Sonny Charles, the organist, took over, singing with a soul appeal that caught up even this predominantly white audience. 1969 C. Himes Blind Man with Pistol xxi. 231 The big white man thought they were talking about him in a secret language known only to soul people. 1971 B. Malamud Tenants 63, I swear to myself I will be the best writer, the best Soul Writer. Ibid. 121 From across the street‥Bill spied him and whooped, ‘Lesser, man, for Christ's sake, cross on over here. I got some soul people with me.’ 1972 Sat. Rev. (U.S.) 27 May. 18/1 You'll be surprised how many soul folk speak Dutch and work and play in surprising Amsterdam. 1975 D. Pitts Target Manhattan (1976) xxvi. 105 They had‥listened to a group of black soul singers. 1976 Drum (E. Afr. ed.) June 10/2 Soul language is a language of protest, a language of self-assertion, a language that rejects the white man's values. 1981 Westindian World 28 Aug. 5/6 The Crusaders are among the finest exponents of the art of making a good listenable soul record.


5. In various phrases (see quots.); also to have no soul: to be lacking in sensibility or right feeling; to have a soul above (something): to be superior to or have higher aspirations than (something); to make one's soul: see make v.1 47.

a. c1400 Beryn 2682 A douȝter, þat he lovid right as his owne saal. 1600 Shakes. A.Y.L. i. ii. 247 My Father lou'd Sir Roland as his soule.
b. 1535 Stewart Cron. Scot. II. 109 [They] Skantlie durst say thair saull wes thair awin. c1712 W. King Old Cheese 8 Wks. 1776 III. 144 Slouch could hardly call his Soul his own. 1768–74 Tucker Lt. Nat. (1834) II. 124 He dares not say his soul is his own. 1889 Corbett Monk xi. 155 From that moment he could not call his soul his own.
c. 1594 Nashe Unfort. Trav. Wks. (Grosart) V. 168 They basted him with a mixture of Aqua fortis [etc.],‥which smarted to the very soule of him. 1602 Shakes. Ham. iii. ii. 10 O it offends mee to the Soule, to see [etc.]. 1604 —— Oth. i. iii. 196, I am glad at soule, I haue no other Child. 1663 Dryden Rival Ladies iv. iii, She's an infamous, lewd prostitute: I loathe her at my soul.
d. 1599 Shakes. Hen. V, iii. vi. 8 A man that I loue and honour with my soule and my heart. 1687 Miége Gt. Fr. Dict. ii. s.v., With all my Soul, de toute mon Ame. a1700 Evelyn Diary 6 Feb. 1685, I cannot‥but deplore his losse, which‥I do with all my soul. 1736 Gentl. Mag. VI. 459/1 Here 'tis with all my Soul. 1828 Lytton Pelham II. xxi, ‘I pledge you, with all my soul,’ said I, filling my glass to the brim.
e. 1588 Shakes. Tit. A. v. iii. 190, I do repent it from my very Soule. 1613 —— Hen. VIII, ii. iv. 81, I‥from my Soule Refuse you for my Iudge. a1700 Evelyn Diary 18 Aug. 1688, I wish from my soul‥her husband‥was as worthy of her. 1768 Sterne Sent. Journ., Temptation, I could not from my soul but fasten the buckle in return.
f. 1704 Swift T. Tub ii. 64 That Fellow, cries one, has no Soul; where is his Shoulder-knot? 1850 ‘L. Limner’ Christmas Comes 9 He seeks refuge in his organ, much to the annoyance of a little tailor in the attic who has no soul in him. 1919 G. B. Shaw Inca of Perusalem in Heartbreak House 209 You have no soul for fine art.
g. 1795 G. Colman New Hay at Old Market 10 My father was an eminent Button-maker‥but I had a soul above buttons.‥ I panted for a liberal profession. 1834 Marryat Peter Simple I. i. 2 My father, who was a clergyman‥had‥a ‘soul above buttons’. 1889 E. Dowson Let. 27 Oct. (1967) 112, I have still a soul above tractlets. 1899 G. B. Burgin Bread of Tears i. iii. 51 Miss Mercy Tressock evidently wrote a very bad hand, and she hadn't a soul above blots: they were dotted copiously about on every page. 1909 ‘O. Henry’ Rus in Urbe in Hampton's Mag. Aug. 160/1 She had a soul above ducks—above nightingales.


6. Metaph. a. The vital, sensitive, or rational principle in plants, animals, or human beings. Freq. with distinguishing adjs., as vegetative, sensible or sensitive, rational or reasonable. (Cf. these words.)

(a) 1398 Trevisa Barth. De P.R. iii. vii. (1495) 53 In dyuers bodyes ben thre manere soules: vegetabilis, that yeuyth lyfe and noo felinge, as in plantes and rootes; Sensibilis, that yeuyth lyfe and felynge and not reason in vnskylfull beestes; Racionalis, that yeuyth lyf, felyng and reeson in men. c1400 tr. Secreta Secret., Gov. Lordsh. 91 Þe kendly sowel [of things vegetable] gedyrs to-gedyr all þes propertes. 1587 Golding De Mornay i. 11 Thou beleeuest that the Plants haue a kinde of Soule, that is to say, a certeine inward power or vertue which maketh them to shoote foorth in their season. 1634 Sir T. Herbert Trav. 209 A soft pith, in which consists the soule and vegetatiue vertue of that tree. 1707 Curios. in Husb. & Gard. 27 A Plant‥contains within itself a Principle of Life, which we may call Soul; from whence proceed the Operations of each Plant. 1725 Watts Logic i. vi. §3 Our elder Philosophers have generally made use of the Word Soul to signify that Principle whereby a Plant grows, and they called it the vegetative Soul.
(b) 1398 [see prec.]. a1400– [see sensitive a. 1]. 1587 Golding De Mornay i. 11 Thou beleeuest that‥the Beastes also haue one other kinde of Soule, which maketh them to mooue. 1620 T. Granger Div. Logike 43 The Brutall soule or spirit is not a power or facultie of the reasonable soule. a1676 Hale Prim. Orig. Man. (1677) 33 The sensible Soul of a vast Whale exerciseth its regiment to every part of that huge structure with the same efficacy and facility as the Soul of a Fly or a Mite doth. 1725 Watts Logic i. vi. §3 The Principle of the animal Motion of a Brute has been likewise call'd a Soul, and we have been taught to name it the sensitive Soul. 1775 Harris Philos. Arrangem. Wks. (1841) 373 The soul perceives those goods which it is conscious that the animal wants. 1875 Boultbee Theol. Ch. Eng. 36 The animal soul was present; for he ate before the disciples. 1880 Ld. Reay Social Democ. Germany 8 The soul with which it [sc. a plastidule] is endowed, is called protoplastic soul.
(c) a1325 Prose Psalter 195 As resonable soule & flesshe is o man. 1390– [see reasonable a. 1b]. 1398 [see (a)]. 1587 Golding De Mornay xv. 238 Auerrhoes, and‥Alexander of Aphrodise,‥vpholde that there is but one vniuersall reasonable Soule or minde, which worketh all our discourses in vs. 1597 Morley Introd. Musicke Ded., Our maisters,‥by whose directions the faculties of the reasonable soule be stirred vp to enter into contemplation. 1610 Healey St. Aug. Citie of God v. xi. (1620) 202 Hee that gaue the vnreasonable soule sense, memorie, and appetite; the reasonable besides these, phantasie, vnderstanding and will. 1615 [see rational a. 1]. 1725 Watts Logic i. vi. §3 They distinguish this by the honourable Title of the rational Soul. 1875 Boultbee Theol. Ch. Eng. 36 The rational soul was there; he reasoned with them out of the Scriptures.


b. Hence three souls, in allusion to the above as combined in human beings.

1601 B. Jonson Poetaster v. iii. 160 What? will I turne sharke, vpon my friends?‥ I scorne it with my three soules. 1601 Shakes. Twel. N. ii. iii. 61 Shall wee rowze the night-Owle in a Catch, that will drawe three soules out of one Weauer? [c1645 Howell Lett. I. iii. 30 The Embryo is animated with three Souls;‥and these three in Man are like Trigonus in Tetragono.]


7. fig. Applied to persons: a. As a term of endearment or adoration.

1581 G. Pettie tr. Guazzo's Civ. Conv. i. (1586) 33b, Politike louers, who‥tearme her‥sometime the heart of their life, sometime their soule. 1590 Shakes. Mids. N. iii. ii. 246 My loue, my life, my soule, faire Helena. 1611 —— Cymb. v. v. 263 Hang there like fruite, my soule, Till the Tree dye. 1654 Gayton Pleas. Notes iii. xiii. 165 O persevere (soule of my soule) And act according to thy word. 1832 Tennyson Œnone 69 My own Œnone,‥my own soul, Behold this fruit. 1864 Browning Dram. Pers., Prospice, O thou soul of my soul! I shall clasp thee again.


b. The personification of some quality.

1605 1st Pt. Jeronimo iii. ii. 40 Prince Balthezer,‥The very soule of true nobility. 1607 Shakes. Timon i. ii. 215 O he's the very soule of Bounty. 1766 Goldsm. Vic. W. xxxi, My brother indeed was the soul of honour. a1902 S. Butler Way of All Flesh (1903) xiii. 56 He had stuck to his post.‥ He had said to himself: ‘I‥am the very soul of honour.’ 1976 R. Lehmann Sea-Grape Tree 30 He's the soul of courtesy but he can be a wee bit difficult.


c. The inspirer or leader of some business, cause, movement, etc.; the chief agent, prime mover, or leading spirit.

1662 J. Davies tr. Olearius' Voy. Amb. 366 The Chancellor, who was the President of the King's Council, the Soul of Affairs. 1688 Holme Armoury iii. 113/2 The Master Printer‥is the Soul of Printing. 1724 De Foe Mem. Cavalier (1840) 122 The soul of the war was dead. 1769 Robertson Chas. V, ix. III. 131 Francis‥, whom he considered as the soul and mover of any confederacy. 1808 Scott Marm. vi. xxxviii, Unnam'd by Hollinshed or Hall, He was the living soul of all. 1855 Macaulay Hist. Eng. xi. III. 15 He was the author and the soul of the European coalition. 1882 W. Ballantine Exper. xvii. 171 As long as he remained‥he was the soul of the table.


8. fig. Of things: a. The essential, fundamental, or animating part, element, or feature of something. Also rarely without article.

(a) 1596 Shakes. 1 Hen. IV, iv. i. 50 Therein should we reade The very Bottome, and the Soule of Hope. 1602 —— Ham. ii. ii. 90 Breuitie is the Soule of Wit. 1632 Milton L'Allegro 144 The hidden soul of harmony. c1670 Hobbes Dial. Com. Laws (1681) 2 Reason is the Soul of the Law. 1712 Addison Spect. No. 409 ⁋10, I could wish there were Authors‥who‥would enter into the very Spirit and Soul of fine Writing. 1775 Schuyler in Sparks Corr. Amer. Rev. (1853) I. 14 That proper spirit of discipline and subordination, which is the very soul of an army. 1807 J. Barlow Columb. iii. 564 Thro' the ranks he breathes the soul of war. 1818 Hazlitt Eng. Poets ii. (1870) 38 Nature is the soul of art. 1892 Westcott Gospel of Life 100 The religious history of the world is the very soul of history.
(b) 1610 Fletcher Faithf. Sheph. iv. iv, I have been woo'd by many with no less Soul of affection. 1634 Ford Perk. Warbeck iii. i, Money gives soule to action.


b. An element, principle, or trace of something.

1599 Shakes. Hen. V, iv. i. 4 There is some soule of goodnesse in things euill. 1862 Spencer First Princ. i. i. §1 (1875) 3 [There is] a soul of truth in things erroneous.


c. the soul of the world [after L. anima mundi, Gr. ψυχὴ τοῦ κόσµου], the animating principle of the world, according to early philosophers.

c1600 Shakes. Sonn. cvii, The prophetick soule Of the wide world, dreaming on things to come. 1678 Cudworth Intell. Syst. i. iv. 215 In like manner he resolved that the Soul of the World‥was not made by God out of Nothing neither. 1785 Reid Intell. Powers i. i. 23 A tract of Timæus the Locrian‥concerning the soul of the world, in which we find the substance of Plato's doctrine concerning ideas.


d. The essential part or quality of some material thing.

1658 tr. Porta's Nat. Magic vii. ii. 192 A Loadstone wrapt up in burning coles‥lost its quality of its soul that was gone, namely, its attractive vertue. 1662 J. Davies tr. Mandelslo's Trav. 32 This excellent scent‥may be called the soul of all Perfume. 1704 Pope Windsor For. 244 He‥With chymic art exalts the min'ral pow'rs, And draws the aromatic souls of flow'rs. 1821 Scott Kenilw. i, Your Spaniard is too wise a man to send you the very soul of the grape. 1855 Tennyson Maud i. xxii. vi, The soul of the rose went into my blood. 1890 W. J. Gordon Foundry 71 But ‘the soul of a ship is her engines’.


II. 9. The spiritual part of man considered in its moral aspect or in relation to God and His precepts.
Freq. with implicit reference to the fate of the soul after death, and so partly belonging to sense 10. cure of souls, see cure n.1 4.

α c825 Vesp. Psalter xviii. 8 Æew dryhtnes [is] untelwirðe, ecerrende sawle. c830 in Sweet O.E. Texts 446 Suilc man sue hit awee, ðonne se hit on his sawale. c1175 Lamb. Hom. 71 Þet lif and saule beon iborȝen. c1200 Ormin 2921 Swa þatt itt Drihhtin cweme be, & halsumm till hiss sawle. c1230 Hali Meid. 15 Ne harmeð hit te nawiht, ne suleð þi sawle. a1300 Cursor M. 1568 Al þair luf þai gaue to lust, þai did þair sauls all to rust. 1393 Langl. P. Pl. C. vi. 199 Secheþ seint treuthe in sauacion of ȝoure saules. 1456 Sir G. Haye Law Arms (S.T.S.) 16 The wrang errouris, the quhilkis tynis mony a saule. c1485 Digby Myst. (1882) iv. 296 Thou knew ther were no remedy to redeym syn, But a bath of þi blude to bath mans saule in. a1509 Hen. VII in Ellis Orig. Lett. Ser. i. I. 44 In all other thyngs that I may knowe should be to youre honour & plesure & weale of youre salle. c1560 A. Scott Poems xxxvi. 9 Wesche me, and mak my sawle serene Frome all iniquite. c1615 Sir W. Mure Misc. Poems xii. 4 Awalk, my sillie saul, in sin quhich too securely lyes. 1786 Burns Twa Dogs 148 Thrang a parliamentin, For Britain's guid his saul indentin.
β c1220 Bestiary 118 Leren he sal his nede;‥and‥tilen him so ðe sowles fode. c1250 Gen. & Ex. 4156 Bi-seke we nu godes miȝt, ðat he make ure sowles briȝt. c1300 Havelok 1422 But Grim was wis,‥Wolde he nouth his soule shende. 1390 Gower Conf. I. 19 Thei prechen ous in audience That noman schal his soule empeire. 1450–80 tr. Secreta Secret. 9 Vndirstondyng is cheef of the governaunce of man and helthe of thi sowle. 1473–5 in Cal. Proc. Chanc. Q. Eliz. II. (1830) Pref. 59 That he stode in grete perell of his sowle lyke to be dampned. 1508 Fisher 7 Penit. Ps. Wks. (1876) I. 7 Makynge this holy psalme wherby he‥was restored to his soules helth. 1582 Card. Allen Martyrdom Campion (1908) 35 His going‥was only for his soule's health, to learn to save his soule. 1603 Shakes. Meas. for M. ii. iv. 65 Ile take it as a perill to my soule, It is no sinne at all. 1665 Pepys Diary 26 July, I begin to think of setting things in order, which I pray God enable me to put both as to soul and body. 1758 S. Hayward Serm. Introd. p. xv, Success‥crowning our imperfect labours in the conversion of souls. 1760–79 [see sin-sick a.]. 1818 Scott Br. Lamm. xi, To hazard my soul in telling lees. 1871 Meredith H. Richmond xii, Labour you will in my vessel, for your soul's health.


10. a. The spiritual part of man regarded as surviving after death and as susceptible of happiness or misery in a future state.

c825 Charter in Sweet O.E. Texts 444 Ðæt mon edele to aelmessan aet ðere tide fore mine sawle & Osuulfes. 863 Ibid. 440 Ic‥ iow fer godes lufe bidde þet e hit minre sawle nyt edeo. a1067 in Kemble Cod. Diplom. IV. 206 Ich hit‥Gode euðe mine saule to helpene. a1122 O.E. Chron. (Laud MS.) an. 675, Ic wile on min dæi hit æcon for here sawle & for minre sawle. a1250 Owl & Night. 1092 Ihesus his soule do mercy. 1297 R. Glouc. (Rolls) 7591 An abbeye he let rere‥uor hor soulen þat þere aslawe were. a1352 Minot Poems (ed. Hall) v. 88 God assoyle þaire sawls; sais all, Amen. 1375 Barbour Bruce xx. 346 To pass‥On goddis fais, that his travale Micht eftir till his saull avale. 1418 E.E. Wills (1882) 33 Masses to be songe for my saule & for the saules aforsaide. 1488 Acc. Ld. High Treas. Scot. I. 90 To pay‥a prest to sing for the Qwenis sawle. 1536 Wriothesley Chron. (Camden) I. 42 Beseechinge him to have mercye on my sowle. 1606 Dekker Newes fr. Hell Wks. (Grosart) II. 142 The soule sees deathes Barge tarrying for her, she begins to be sorrie for her ante-acted euils.


b. In phrases implying the death of a person.
See also betake v. 2, and cf. commend v. 1b.

a1122 O.E. Chron. (Laud MS.) an. 1012 And his þa halian sawle to Godes rice asende. c1275 Passion our Lord 482 in O.E. Misc. 51 Vader ich myne soule biteche in þyne honde. a1300 Cursor M. 210 How our leuedi endid and yald Hir sely saul. c1375 Sc. Leg. Saints x. (Matthew) 312 Eglippus in til gud elde, to god of hewyne, þe sawle can ȝeld. a1400 Isumbras 733 My saule I wyte into thy hande, For I kepe to lyffe no mare! c1470 Henry Wallace ii. 175 All weildand God, resawe My petows spreit and sawle. 1516 Test. Ebor. (Surtees) VI. 1, I bequeath my soull to the holie Trinitie. 1596 Dalrymple tr. Leslie's Hist. Scot. II. 130 King Henrie‥his saul commendis to God, and his body to the clay. 1819 [see resign v.1 1d].


11. Used in various asseverative phrases or as an exclamation, as by, for, on or upon (one's) soul, etc.
The Eng. Dial. Dict. gives a number of similar examples.

a. 1362 Langl. P. Pl. A. viii. 23 For þei sworen bi heore soule—‘so God hem moste helpe!’ c1386 Chaucer Prol. 781 Now, by my fadres soule, that is deed. 1579 Spenser Sheph. Cal. Sept. 248 Now by my soule Diggon, I lament The haplesse mischief, that has thee hent. 1586 J. Ferne Blaz. Gentrie 22 By my Vather's Zoule they semen most of churles not of gentle blood. a1704 T. Brown Dial. Dead Wks. 1711 IV. 47 Be mee Shoul, and bee Chreest and St. Patrick. 1762 Foote Orator ii. Wks. 1799 I. 216 By my shoul but I will spake. 1800 Coleridge Christabel ii. xxviii, By my mother's soul do I entreat That thou this woman send away! 1825 Scott Talism. xvii, Now, by King Henry's soul! [etc.].
b. c1386 Chaucer Reeve's T. 343 Thou, Iohn, thou swynesheed, awak For cristes saule. 1728 Ramsay Monk & Miller's Wife 243 Whate'er you see be nought surpriz'd, But for your saul move not your tongue. 1807 Syd. Smith Lett. Catholics Wks. 1859 II. 153/1, I cannot for the soul of me conceive whence this man has gained his notions of Christianity. 1826 Disraeli Viv. Grey vi. i, For the soul of ye you wouldn't know it from the greenest Tokay. 1894 ‘J. S. Winter’ Red Coats 63 But for the life and soul of him he could not help thinking about her.
c. c1450 Lovelich Graal liii. 116 Sire,‥vppon Oure sowles þe sothe we scholen ȝow seyne. 1482 Cely Papers (Camden) 106 Thay sayd howr mother schulld go on preschesyon on Corpys Kyrste day‥and a my sowyll howr mother whent at that day. a1510 Douglas K. Hart ii. 100 Now, on my saule, ȝe ar bot lurdanis all! 1604 Shakes. Oth. v. ii. 181 Vpon my Soule, a Lye; a wicked Lye. 1693 Congreve Old Bach. ii. iii, What ever the Matter is, O my Sol, I'm afraid you'l follow evil Courses. 1749 Fielding Tom Jones xiv. vii, Should any fatal Accident follow, as upon my Soul I am afraid will. 1824 Scott St. Ronan's xxxvi, ‘On my soul,’ said Mowbray, ‘you must mean Solmes!’ 1842 S. Lover Handy Andy ix, But, 'pon my sowl, the next time I go buy hay, I'll take care that Saint Pether hasn't any hand in it. 1878 H. Smart Play or Pay viii, ‘Upon my soul,’ rejoined the Hussar, ‘I think’ [etc.].
d. 1613 Shakes. Hen. VIII, iv. i. 44 Sir, as I haue a Soule, she is an Angell. 1760–1 Smollett Sir L. Greaves I. v, As I'm a precious saoul, a looks as if a saw something.
e. 1796 Gall Elegy on Pudding Lizzie viii, Saul! how it sharpen'd ilka ane. 1818 Scott Br. Lamm. iii, Saul, your honour, and that I am. 1845 Disraeli Sybil (1863) 72 Soul alive, but those‥are rotten, snickey, bad yarns. 1896 ‘Ian Maclaren’ Kate Carnegie 282 But sall, she focht her battle weel.


III. 12. The disembodied spirit of a (deceased) person, regarded as a separate entity, and as invested with some amount of form and personality: a. With poss. pron. or gen., or implying this.

971 Blickl. Hom. 211 Uton nu biddan Sanctus Michael‥þæt he ure saula elæde on efean. c1050 O.E. Chron. (MS. C) an. 1036, Syððan hine man byride,‥on þam suð portice, seo saul is mid Criste. c1205 Lay. 29634 Heofne is þe al ȝaru, þider scal þi saulen uaren. c1250 Gen. & Ex. 4136 His bodi was biried wið angeles hond,‥In to lef reste his sowle wond. c1300 Havelok 245 Þat God self shulde his soule leden Into heuene. c1385 Chaucer L.G.W. 2493 Phyllis, The deuyl sette here soules bothe a fere. c1420 in 26 Pol. Poems 108 Contrary to godis hest Þou purchasest þy saule helle prisoun. 1474 Caxton Chesse ii. iv. (1883) 52 They lyue in her sowles gloriously that ben slain‥for the comyn wele. 1560 J. Daus tr. Sleidane's Comm. 115b, It was beleved certenly that dead mens soules dyd walke after they were buried. 1599 A. Hume Hymns i. 131 Then sall my singing saull reioyce, And flee aboue the skie. 1615 G. Sandys Trav. 266 Saint German‥here found the soule of Pascasus tormented with heate. 1833 Tennyson May Queen iii. xi, I know The blessed music went that way my soul will have to go. 1875 Jowett Plato (ed. 2) I. 343 Another world in which the souls of the dead are gathered together.


b. With a, the, and in pl.

971 Blickl. Hom. 67 Mycelne bite Drihten dyde on helle þa he þyder asta,‥& þa halan sauwla þonon alædde. Ibid. 209 On ðæm clife hangodan‥manie swearte saula be heora handum ebundne. c1200 Trin. Coll. Hom. 115 Þo folȝede ure helende michel feord of englen and of holie soules. c1275 Passion our Lord 682 in O.E. Misc. 56 Þe veond of helle hedde muchel onde Vor hi by-nomen him saulen. c1330 R. Brunne Chron. Wace (Rolls) 9184 Payens & Cristen, many were slawen, & many a sowle fro body drawen. c1386 Chaucer Prol. 510 A chaunterie for soules. c1430 Compend. Old Treat. in Roy Rede me (Arb.) 180 They be cowntable of as many sowlys as dyen in thys default. 1470–85 Malory Arthur xvi. xiii. 681 Thenne oure lord Ihesus Cryste shewed hym vnto yow in the lykenes of a sowle that suffred grete anguysshe. 1513 Douglas Æneid vi. xi. 3 Sawlis‥quhilkis wer for to wend To mydle erd, and thair in bodeis ascend. 1596 R. H. tr. Lavaterus's Ghostes & Spir. 61 With whome the same soule meeting as it did before, lamented very much. 1616 J. Lane Contn. Sqr.'s T. iv. 46 note, And in her glasse, white soles ascendinge, spied the narrowe waie to theire Lord glorified. 1683 Norris Plato's Two Cupids iv. Misc. (1687) 88 So Devils and damned Souls in hell Fry in the fire with which they dwell. 1750 Gray Elegy 89 On some fond breast the parting soul relies. 1812 Byron Ch. Har. ii. viii, If‥there be A land of souls beyond that sable shore. 1899 Daily News 17 Apr. 4/3 The idea was that the soul was a little bloodless, fleshless thing.


c. local. (See quots., and cf. ghost-moth.)

1851 N. & Q. 1st Ser. III. 220 The country-people used to in my youth‥call night-flying white moths, especially the Hepialus humuli,‥‘souls’. 1861 All Year Round 1 June 234 To this day, in the north and west of England, the moths that fly into candles are called Saules.


13. a. A person, an individual; †a living thing. Chiefly in enumeration, or with every.

[c1000 Ælfric Gen. ii. 7 And se man wæs eworht on libbendre sawle.]
c1320 Cast. Love 448 Nis þer nout in world‥Þat nis destrued‥But eiȝte soulen þt weren i-ȝemed In þe schup. c1381 Chaucer Parl. Foules 33 Erthe and soulis that thereon dwelle. 1535 Coverdale Lev. xi. 46 All maner of soules yt crepe vpon earth. c1550 [? G. Walker] Detect. Dice-Play Div, He wilbe your cuntry man at least, & peraduenture either of kinne or aly, or some soule sib vnto you. 1632 Lithgow Trav. ii. 52 Below the middle part, there was but one body, and aboue the middle there was two liuing soules, each one separated from another. 1672 Petty Pol. Anat. (1691) 18 The number of British slain in 11 years was 112 thousand Souls. 1724 Briton No. 24. 104 We have now pretty accurately ascertain'd the Number of Souls‥existing in England. 1776 Earl Carlisle in Jesse Selwyn & Contemp. (1844) III. 158 Not the worse for having levanted every soul at Newmarket. 1819 Byron Juan ii. lxi, Nine souls more went in her: the long-boat still Kept above water. 1861 M. Pattison Ess. (1889) I. 38 The frail craft capsized, and Hartmann, with nearly every soul on board, went down in her. 1894 Wolseley Marlb. I. 245 There were about three hundred souls on board.


b. In negative phrases, esp. not a soul.

1610 Shakes. Temp. i. ii. 209 Not a soule But felt a Feauer. 1759 Sterne Tr. Shandy ii. v, When you are predetermined to take no one soul's advice. 1775 F. Burney Early Diary, Let. 10 June, We had not a soul beyond our own family. 1811 Shelley in Hogg Life (1858) I. 391, I am what the sailors call ‘banyaning’. I do not see a soul. 1857 W. Collins Dead Secret iii. i, He allowed no living soul‥to enter the house. 1897 A. Morrison Dorrington Deed-box i, I shall be all alone, without a soul to say a word to.


c. dial. Used in the pl. as a form of address: Friends, fellows.

1874 T. Hardy Far from Madding Crowd lvii, Come in, souls, and have something to eat and drink. 1892 ‘Q.’ (Quiller Couch) Three Ships ii, Well, souls, we was a bit tiddly~winky last Michaelmas.


d. In Tsarist Russia, a serf. Also transf.

1806 M. Wilmot Jrnl. 17 Aug. in Russ. Jrnls. (1934) iii. 271 One‥often hears two Ladies‥talking to each other about the sale of Lands, purchase of Souls (slaves). 1895 C. Garnett tr. Turgenev's Fathers & Children i. 2 Nikolai Petrovitch Kirsanov‥had‥a fine property of two hundred souls, or, as he expressed it—since he had arranged the division of his land with the peasants‥of nearly five thousand acres. 1943 E. M. Almedingen Frossia iv. 169 The good Boyarin made it known that her dowry would be‥five hundred souls, all under the age of fifty. 1969 V. G. Kiernan Lords of Human Kind vi. 225 Africans were being disposed of as Europeans were by their princes not long before, when the Congress of Vienna‥distributed them in lots of so many thousand ‘souls’. 1977 V. S. Pritchett Gentle Barbarian i. 5 Spasskoye was‥a self-sufficient feudal community‥an empire numbering 5,000 ‘souls’.


14. a. Used with defining adj. to denote a person of a particular character or in respect of some quality; freq. with a touch of contempt, compassion, or familiarity.
Common in the 16th and 17th centuries.

1519 North Co. Wills (Surtees) 105 Euery yere‥to give xd. to x poore soulles. a1548 Hall Chron., Hen. V, 60b, Innumerable sely solles dayly died and hourely starued. 1602 Marston Antonio's Rev. v. v, Call Julio hither. Where's the little sowle? I sawe him not to-day. 1665 Extr. Sel. P. rel. Friends (1912) III. 247 The honest Soules‥ar much aflicted to be reuiled‥by the bold faction. 1806 J. Beresford Miseries Hum. Life vii. xix, Paying a long visit at the retired house of a well meaning Soul. 1833 H. Martineau Loom & Lugger i. v, It was very well the poor soul had not had a long illness. 1874 Burnand My Time i. 3 Nurse Davis, the kindest soul in the world, and very fond of my mother.


b. Used parenthetically, or with like.

1572 Satir. Poems Reform. xxxi. 112 Sillie saulis, thay ar sa daft. 1594 Kyd Cornelia v. 63 He made his Pyoners (poore weary soules)‥to dig‥new Trenches. 1663 S. Patrick Parab. Pilgr. xx. (1687) 200 Poor Soul! who puts us upon doing‥but knows not what it is to believe. 1782 Cowper Gilpin 65 Now mistress Gilpin (careful soul!) Had two stone bottles found. 1811 C. K. Sharpe Let. Corr. 1888 I. 493 For his errors, poor soul! were venial. 1850 Kingsley A. Locke (1876) I. 7 She would have stuffed my ears with cotton, kind careful soul. 1870 Dickens E. Drood i, Ye'll remember like a good soul.


c. With more distinct implication of sense 2 or 3.

1635 Quarles Embl. ii. v, What mean dull souls, in this high measure, To haberdash In earth's base wares. 1685 Gracian's Courtier's Orac. 154 The least atome of baseness is inconsistent with the generosity of great Souls. 1721 Ramsay Prospect of Plenty 129 Active sauls a stagnant life despise. 1741–2 Gray Agrip. 126 Rough, stubborn souls, That struggle with the yoke. 1841–4 Emerson Ess., History Wks. (Bohn) I. 7 It has been said, that ‘common souls pay with what they do—nobler souls with that which they are’. 1871 Morley Carlyle in Crit. Misc. Ser. i. 215 It was not science for headlong and impatient souls.


15. In pregnant use:a. (See quot.) Obs.—0

a1700 B. E. Dict. Cant. Crew, He is a Soul, or loves Brandy.


b. One in whom the spiritual or intellectual qualities predominate (rare). The Souls, a late nineteenth-century aristocratic coterie with predominantly cultural and intellectual interests.

1814 Byron Diary 19 Feb., Just returned from seeing Kean in Richard. By Jove, he is a soul! 1890 B. Potter Jrnl. 31 Dec. (1982) I. 349 Balfour‥would crush them in the intervals between a flirtation with one of the ‘Souls’ and the reading of a French novel. 1895 Daily News 9 Dec. 7/1 Brought up by such a mother, the Lady Marcella naturally became something of a Soul. 1934 H. G. Wells Exper. Autobiogr. II. ix. 766 The ‘Souls’, the Balfour set. 1980 D. Newsome On Edge of Paradise ii. 47 The young and wealthy aspirants to public eminence and the eligible daughters of leading families.‥ The group to be christened by Lord Charles Beresford in 1888 ‘the Souls’.


IV. In various special or technical uses.


16. (See later quots.) Now dial.

1530 Palsgr. 273/1 Soule of a capon or gose, ame. 1591 Percivall Sp. Dict., Molleja, the tender parte in any birde, which in a goose we call the soule, Præcordia. 1774 Goldsm. Nat. Hist. (1862) II. i. i. 5 Their lungs, which are commonly called the sole, stick fast to the sides of the ribs and back. 1876 I. Banks Manch. Man xliv, One of his favourite tid-bits was that spongy lining of a goose's frame known as the soul.


17. The bore of a cannon (see quot. 1571).
So F. l'âme d'un canon.

1571 Digges Pantom. (1591) 176 Forasmuch as by the direction of the hollowe Cylinder‥of the Peece, the violence of all shot of great Artillerye is not onely directed but also increased, I call that hollowe Cylinder of the Peece her Soule. 1626 Capt. Smith Accid. Yng. Seamen 32 Particuler‥tearmes for great Ordnances, as the concaue, trunke, cylinder, the soule or bore of a peece. 1669 Sturmy Mariner's Mag. v. xii. 62, I find‥the soule or bore to be 1 inch out of his place.


18. The sound-post of a violin.

1838 Penny Mag. 30 June 246/2 This peg is called the sounding-post, or, as the French term it, the soul of the violin. 1854 Brewer Sound 145 The object of this prop, called the sound-post or ‘soul’ of the violin, is‥to make the face and back vibrate in exact unison. 1868 Airy Sound 167.


V. attrib. and Comb.


19. Genitive combs.:a. With forms representing the OE. gen. sing. sáwle, as soul-boot, soul leech, etc. See also soul-heal, -health.
Also with gen. pl. saulene for OE. sáwla.

c1200 Ormin 10194 Hefennlike mahhte, Þatt mihhte turrnenn swillke menn To sekenn *sawlebote. a1225 Ancr. R. 182 Þus is sicnesse *soule leche. 1375 in Horstmann Altengl. Leg. (1878) 138/2 Praye we‥Þat god‥Be his soule leche. 1411 26 Pol. Poems 42, I‥Bycom a man to be ȝoure soule leche. c1200 Ormin 12621 To lokenn whatt itt tæcheþþ uss Off ure *sawle nede. 13‥ Minor Poems fr. Vernon MS. xxxvii. 733 He‥seiþ hit is þe *soule note Þat þe prest seiþ and doþ. c1375 Sc. Leg. Saints vi. (Thomas) 490 Ve suld set our maste delyte In goddis vord fore *sawle profyte. c1470 Gol. & Gaw. 269 Be the pilgramage compleit I pas for *saull prow. c1412 Hoccleve De Reg. Princ. 4440 His lordes *soule salue he from hym hydith. c1200 Ormin Pref. 102 Icc wile shæwenn ȝuw Hu mikell *sawle sellþe‥unnderrfoþ‥all þatt lede. 13‥ Minor Poems fr. Vernon MS. xxxvii. 781 Al þat þe bodi lykeþ wel Is aȝeyn þe *soule wille.


b. With the form soul's, as soul's-city, soul's-darling, soul's friend.

1593 Nashe Christ's Tears Wks. (Grosart) IV. 157 He‥cannot chuse but haue his soules-cittie soone raced. 1605 1st Pt. Jeronimo i. ii. 65 Adew, soules friend. 1874 L. Carr J. Gwynne I. vi. 182 An always erring and very faulty soul's-darling.


20. Simple attrib., as soul-affair, soul-blood, †soul-case, soul concern)ment, soul-minster, soul-power, soul-work, etc.
The number of attributive uses is very large, and in this and the following groups only a few of the older or more important are illustrated.

1672 O. Heywood Diaries (1883) III. 198 He‥was very stupid about *soul-affaires. 1629 Donne Serm. cix. Wks. 1839 IV. 492 Adam is but‥red earth, earth dyed red in blood, in *soul-blood. 1848 Bailey Festus (ed. 3) 41 Corruption‥is in Your soul-blood and your soul-bones. 1699 O. Heywood Diaries (1885) IV. 195 Elizabeth Sonier came to discourse with me in *soul-cases. 1654 Whitlock Zootomia 393 The Cures (attempted) by a‥ranckerous Spirit, are wounds in this *Soule-chirurgery. 1742–3 Observ. upon Methodists 23, I hear some are under *Soul concern. 1675 O. Heywood Diaries (1883) III. 165, I talk with them about *soul-concernments. 1619 W. Y. To Rdr. in Hieron's Wks. II. 424 Gods gracious preseruing from *soule-destruction. 1617 Hieron Ibid. 191 One fit of *soule-disturbance will make all those kinds of gladnesse to flee away like a dreame. 1645 Rutherford Tryal & Tri. Faith (1845) 93 Christ promiseth *Soul-ease. 1646 W. Jenkyn Remora 13 Are your heartiest, your *soul-endeavours set upon Reformation? 1726 Wodrow Corr. (1843) III. 239 Besides much spiritual *soul exercise, it contained many valuable hints at facts. 1816 Scott Old Mort. xlii, The Cameronians‥boasted frequently of Burley's soul-exercises. a1638 Mede Wks. (1672) 631 This order of Dæmons, or *Soul-gods, as I may call them. 1654 Gataker Disc. Apol. 75 Because he would not dissolv the *soul-harmonie of weak persons. 1645 Rutherford Tryal & Tri. Faith (1845) 260 That death, that *soul-hell in the want of Christ. a1618 Sylvester Paradox agst. Libertie 1089 Wks. (Grosart) II. 65 In *soule idlenesse, to spend so large a time. 1677 J. Elliot in Birch Life of Boyle Wks. 1772 I. p. xxvi, The Lord's work of *soul-instruction and edification. 1662 Hibbert Body Divinity i. 127 *Soul-light is not enough to make us truly wise. 1937 Blunden Elegy 16 Foremost of all a matin hymn From these *soul-minsters leaps aloft. a1930 D. H. Lawrence Phoenix (1936) v. 607 They combine with their *soul-power some great technical skill. c1620 J. Davies (Heref.) Commendatory Poems, Sylvester Wks. (Grosart) II. 15/1 Here is stor'd such sweet *Soule-ravishments. 1689 Mem. Rokeby (Surtees) 12 A sister that‥has rec[eive]d‥much *soule-refreshment. 1581 Allen Apologie 9b, *Soul rightes (without which men perish doubtlesse euerlastingly). 1657 F. Cockin Div. Blossomes 12 That which unto *Soul-safety much doth tend. 1648 Gage West Ind. iv. 14 That occasion of some *soul-sanctification. 1641 F. Greville On Episc. 97 They have come to cutting off Eares, Cheeks, and have yet struck deeper, and essayed many *Soule-Schismes. 1646 Trapp Comm. John xiii. 25 John‥, who knew Christ's *soul-secrets. 1883 Jefferies Story of my Heart 49 The circumambient ether‥is full of soul-secrets. 1656 E. Reyner Rules Govt. Tongue 269 Some‥have drunk very deep of the cup of *soul-troubles. 1690 C. Nesse Hist. O. & N. Test. I. 142 Idolizing the Virgin Mary‥, equalling her milk unto Christs blood for *soul vertue. a1618 Sylvester Mem. Mortalitie lxxxi. Wks. (Grosart) II. 227 Mock-Saints, whose *Soul-weal on your Works you lay. 1668 R. Steele Husbandm. Call. v. (1672) 85 *Soul-work never goes on, unless we have a mind to work. 1927 D. H. Lawrence Let. 9 Jan. (1932) 679 Painting is more fun and less *soul-work than writing. 1834 K. H. Digby Mores Cath. v. iv. 109 It was the reflection of God. It was the invisible world, the *soul world. 1600 W. Watson Decacordon (1602) 268 Respecting the danger of *soule-wracke.


21. With the names of persons, etc. (chiefly agent-nouns), as soul carrier, soul-curer, soul-mate, soul-thief, soul-twister, etc.

1553 Becon Jewel of Joy Pref., The mumbling masses of those lasy *soule cariers. 1598 Shakes. Merry W. iii. i. 100 *Soule-Curer, and Body-Curer. 1825 Cobbett Rur. Rides (1885) II. 88 There is no parsonage house for a soul-curer to stay in. 1785 Grose Dict. Vulgar T., *Soul doctor,‥a parson. 1880 W. Newton in Serm. Boys & Girls (1881) 148 The Pharisees called themselves teachers or soul-doctors. a1700 B. E. Dict. Cant. Crew, *Soul-driver, a Parson. 1682 Bunyan Gtness. of Soul Wks. (Offor) I. 142 This is a *soul-fool, a fool of the biggest size. 1656 E. Reyner Rules Govt. Tongue 203 Receive Reprovers as the Angels of God, as our *soul-friends. 1382 Wyclif Gen. iii. 14 Thow shalt be cursid among alle the *soule hauers and beestis of the erthe. c1375 Sc. Leg. Saints xxvii. (Machor) 1457 All þe folk of þat cyte‥to sanct morise but mare ar went, & hyme as fadire & *saule-hyrd Resauit sone. 1682 Bunyan Gtness. of Soul Wks. (Offor) I. 140 Every mouth shall be stopped, and all the world (of *soul losers) become guilty before God. 1822 Coleridge Lett., Convers., etc. II. 89 You must have a *Soulmate as well as a House or Yoke-mate. 1915 F. M. Hueffer Good Soldier iii. v. 202 He thought that Mrs Basil had been his *soulmate. 1976 Botham & Donnelly Valentino ix. 71 Convinced that he had found the woman who would be his life's soulmate. 1812 Colman Br. Grins, Two Parsons xiv, Great Britain's principal *Soul-mender Liveth at Lambeth Palace. 1650 Trapp Comm. Deut. xxiv. 7 Of which sort of *soul-merchants, there are now-a-dayes found not a few. 1530 Tindale Wks. (Parker Soc.) 437 If he minister it not truly and freely unto us,‥he is a thief and a *soul-murderer. 1825 Scott Talism. xxviii, ‘Oh, procrastination!’ exclaimed the Hermit, ‘thou art a soul-murderer!’ 1854 Faber Growth in Holiness (1872) xxii. 430 The Church is a living *soul-saver. 1540 Coverdale Fruitful Less. iii. Wks. (Parker Soc.) I. 357 Therefore are many curates and *soul-shepherds so faint and cold to preach‥Christ. 1682 Bunyan Gtness. of Soul Wks. (Offor) I. 143 Choose for thyself good soul-shepherds. 1593 Nashe Christ's Tears Wks. (Grosart) IV. 120, I deale more searchingly then common *soule-surgions accustome. 1889 W. B. Yeats Lett. to New Island (1934) 195 Perhaps they are evil-spirits, these *soul-thiefs, and not fairies at all. 1928 D. H. Lawrence Phoenix II (1968) 284 Dmitri Karamazov doesn't go half the lengths of the other Russian *soul-twisters. 1956 D. Gascoyne Night Thoughts 33 This soultwister blisters the paint of the set.


22. With vbl. ns., as soul-craving, soul-feasting, soul humbling, soul-making, soul-mating, soul-prompting, soul-transfiguring, etc.

1602 J. Davies (Heref.) Mirum in Modum Wks. (Grosart) I. 11/1 The Spirit of Man‥Should not, to such Soule-swillings base decline. c1670 O. Heywood Diaries (1881) II. 341 This fasting is soul-feasting. 1685 Ibid. (1885) IV. 113 How many sweet sabboths,‥how many soul-humblings. 1818 Bentham Church-of-Englandism 329 The‥maintenance of this corrupt system‥on pretence of souls-saving. 1819 Keats Lett. (1958) II. 102 Call the world if you Please ‘The vale of Soul-making’. 1875 McLean Gospel in Psalms 203 The wonder should not deprive us of‥the soul-heartening. 1891 The Tablet 7 Nov. 743 Christ by a few words of teaching filled the soul-craving of multitudes. 1922 Joyce Ulysses 138 If aught that the‥hand of sculptor has wrought in marble of soultransfigured and of soul-transfiguring deserves to live. a1930 D. H. Lawrence Phoenix (1936) v. 605 Man just doesn't know how to interpret his own soul-promptings. 1939 A. Huxley After Many a Summer x. 140 Love, Passion, Soul-mating—all in upper-case letters. 1958 Times Lit. Suppl. 21 Feb. 101/2 The mid-Victorian novelists‥thought of it [sc. Oxford] as a moral testing-ground or ‘a vale of soul-making’.


23. With pres. pples. forming objective combs., as soul-adorning, soul-amazing, soul-awakening, soul-boiling, soul-deadening, soul-destroying, soul-inspiring, soul-satisfying, soul-searing, soul-shattering, soul-stirring, soul-testing, etc., adjs.
The number of these is very great, esp. in the works of John Davies of Hereford and J. Beaumont, who have soul-afflicting, soul-attracting, soul-blinding, soul-catching, soul-cheering, soul-commanding, soul-conquering, etc.

a1618 Sylvester Panaretus 839 Of all *Soule-adorning Giftes divine,‥the Monarchie is Mine. 1688 Bunyan Heavenly Footman (1886) 139 What a *soul-amazing word will that be. a1822 Shelley Posthumous Poems (1824) 320 *Soul-awakening music, sweet and strong. 1926 C. Barry Detective's Holiday iv. 33 Suddenly a soul-awakening boom behind him smote his ears. 1606 Sylvester Du Bartas ii. iv. ii. Magnificence 19 Here in Sonnets, there in Epigrams, Evaporate your sweet *Soule-boyling Flames. 1612 J. Davies (Heref.) Muse's Sacrifice Ep. Ded., Shapers, and Soules of all *Soule-charming Rimes! 1600 Tourneur Transf. Metam. x. 68 T'enrich her coffers with *soule-choaking dust. 1591 Shakes. Two Gent. ii. vi. 16 Twenty thousand *soule-confirming oathes. 1601 G. Markham Mary Magd. Lam. Pref. 19 Yea, *soule-confounding sinne so far hath crept. 1609 J. Davies (Heref.) Holy Rood Wks. (Grosart) I. 9/2 T'was time to turne His *Soule-conuerting Eies To thee peruerted Peter. 1868 J. H. Newman Verses Var. Occas. 125 So we her flame must trim, Around His soul-converting sign. 1659 Pell Impr. Sea 76 note, *Soul-corrupting discourse. 1837 Syd. Smith Serm. Duties Queen Wks. 1859 II. 253/1 For all the soul-corrupting homage with which she is met. a1708 Beveridge Thes. Theol. (1711) III. 347 Drunkenness‥is a *soul-damning sin. 1909 Mrs. H. Ward Daphne viii. 186 This dull, *soul-deadening English life. 1937 Atlantic Monthly CLIX. 57/1 Exact information which really can be taught is despised as soul-deadening. a1626 J. Davies (Heref.) Sonn. Sir E. Dyer Wks. (Grosart) I. 100/1 Minerua and the Muse ioyes my Soule's sence, Sith *Soule-delighting lines they multiplie. 1677 Gale Crt. Gentiles iii. 64 The Devil, their great Apollo or *Soul destroying God. 1865 Tylor Early Hist. Man. vii. 159 Graving on a folded tablet many soul-destroying things. 1898 G. B. Shaw Candida 11, in Plays Pleasant 123 What dreadful—what *soul-destroying cynicism! 1930 Engineering 25 July 111/3 A common indictment against modern conditions is that machine tending is ‘soul-destroying’. 1976 J. Snow Cricket Rebel 40 It was often soul destroying. On wet wickets or slow ones, I was expected to charge up and down and let it go when I knew I had no earthly chance of getting anything out of the wicket. 1642–4 Vicars God in Mount 45 The *soul-devouring corruptions of these Clergy-caterpillers. 1898 W. Graham Last Links 116 Eyes fixed with an earnest, soul-devouring gaze upon his companion. 1748 Thomson Cast. Indol. i. xxxix, Aerial music‥breathed such *soul-dissolving airs, As did [etc.]. 1603 J. Davies (Heref.) Microcosmos Pref., O that I had a *Soule-enchanting Tongue. 1680 Reyner Serm. Funeral Ld. Holles 20 He was careful therefore to store his mind with all *soul-ennobling vertues. 1868 J. H. Newman Verses Var. Occas. 37 This their soul-ennobling gain. 1647 Trapp Comm. 1 Cor. vii. 5 Fasting-days are *soul-fatting days. 1595 Shakes. John ii. i. 383 Their *soule-fearing clamours haue braul'd downe The flintie ribbes of this contemptuous Citie. 1600 Tourneur Transf. Metam. viii. 54 *Soule-frighting horrors. 1648 J. Beaumont Psyche viii. cxiii, *Soule-knawing Worms. 1848 Buckley Iliad 127 To fight with the strength of soul-gnawing strife. 1748 Richardson Clarissa VI. 165 Thy *soul-harrowing intelligence. 1593 Nashe Christ's Tears Wks. (Grosart) IV. 225 A *soule imitating deuill. 1794 J. Trumbull in Columbian Muse 58 And damp'd, alas! thy *soul-inspiring ray, Where Virtue prompted and where Genius soar'd. 1979 ‘A. Hailey’ Overload ii. i. 106, I guess it's real soul-inspiring to work in a ritzy layout like this. 1590 Shakes. Com. Err. i. ii. 100 *Soule-killing Witches, that deforme the bodie. 1866 S. B. James Duty & Doctrine (1871) 94 This habit is so enervating, so soul killing. 1690 C. Nesse Hist. O. & N. Test. I. 24 Man should be‥a life-loving creature,‥also a *soul loving creature. a1721 Sheffield (Dk. Buckhm.) Wks. (1753) I. 87 No writing lifts exalted man so high, As sacred and *soul-moving poesy. 1816 Wordsw. ‘Imagination–ne'er before content’ 68 The deep soul-moving sense Of religious eloquence. 1690 C. Nesse Hist. O. & N. Test. I. 137, I shall one day perish by the hand of those *soul-murthering Sauls. 1648 J. Beaumont Psyche viii. xxxvi, This noble Face; by whose *soul-piercing raies The Gentiles‥Admonish'd are to‥tread the open paths of highnoon Light. 1870 J. H. Newman Grammar of Assent ii. x. 386 That fearful antagonism brought out with such soul-piercing reality by Lucretius. 1601 Weever Mirr. Mart. (Roxb.) 208 My crownd, *soule-pleasing, sweet joy, mirth and plesure. 1697 Congreve Mourn. Bride iii. vi, That *soul-racking Thought. 1809–10 Shelley ‘Oh! take the pure gem’ 18 Long visions of soul-racking pain. 1650 Baxter Saints' R. 716 These spiritual, excellent, *soul-raising duties. 1613–6 W. Browne Brit. Past. ii. lii, All-loved Draiton in *soul-raping straines, A genuine noat‥Began to tune. a1618 Sylvester Tetrastica lxxii, The Charm Of those *soule-rapting Impes of Acheloes. 1603 J. Davies (Heref.) An Extasie Wks. (Grosart) I. 94/1 Maie-bowes‥Where out shal breath *soule-ravishing perfume. 1673 Hickeringill Greg. F. Greyb. 264 Those soul-ravishing opportunities. 1782 tr. Mme. de Gomez's Belle A. II. 195 With what *soul-rending Agonies was it that [etc.]. 1657 F. Cockin Div. Blossomes 48 So sweet, so clean, So *Soul-reviving. 1833 H. Blunt Lect. Hist. St. Paul II. 55 Those waters of life‥so soul-reviving and soul-strengthening. a1708 Beveridge Thes. Theol. (1711) III. 7 Rejoice in Him‥as a *soul-satisfying God in Himself. 1890 Kipling Life's Handicap (1891) 151 He was afraid for the sake of another—which is the most soul-satisfying fear known to man. 1939 F. Scott Fitzgerald Lett. (1964) 48 It is not very soul-satisfying because it [sc. the cinema] is a business of telling stories fit for children. 1936 Times Lit. Suppl. 21 Mar. 242/3 We are‥given a *soul-searing account of a Russian pogrom. 1979 ‘A. Hailey’ Overload iii. xii. 253 A week and a half had passed since the soul-searing night when he learned that Ruth's life was endangered by cancerous cells at large in her body. 1731 A. Hill Advice to Poets xi, *Soul-shaking Sovereigns of the Passions. 1899 Kipling From Sea to Sea II. xxv. 5 The result is *soul-shattering. 1974 R. Harris Double Snare xi. 73 She and I had a soul-shattering row, and weren't on speaking terms. 1688 Bunyan Jerus. Sinner Saved (1886) 124 Unreasonable and *soul-sinking doubts. 1609 J. Davies (Heref.) Holy Rood Wks. (Grosart) I. 10/1 *Soule-slaying Schismaticke, nor God, nor Man. 1834 Tait's Mag. I. 173/2 Honest, upright, amiable, patriotic,‥and *soul-stirring David! 1927 Granta 14 Oct. 9/1 He rapidly composed and delivered a few soul-stirring orations. 1648 J. Beaumont Psyche xviii. cxl, Whilst yet with Charis's *soulsubduing heat Her melted and convicted heart did beat. 1892 W. S. Lilly Gt. Enigma 303 That heart-bewildering soul-subduing problem of evil. 1591 Sylvester Du Bartas i. vii. 333 Th' ill humours That vex his most-Saints with *soul-tainting tumours. 1932 Wodehouse Louder & Funnier 212 The unmistakable look of a man who has passed through some *soul-testing experience. 1965 J. A. Michener Source (1966) 192 Captain Epher's plan of battle required daring from all the Hebrews and soul-testing courage from a few. 1616 Drummond of Hawthornden Flowers of Sion (1630) 29 A Sanctuarie from *Soule-thralling Snares. 1598 J. Dickenson Greene in Conc. (1878) 104 A sequell of many sorrowes, a Centurie of *sowltyring passions. a1634 Chapman Rev. for Honour ii. i. 268 To feed the irregular flames of false suspicions And *soul-tormenting jealousies. 1606 J. Davies (Heref.) Speculum Proditori Wks. (Grosart) II. 20/1 None but *soule-wounding words for it are meete. 1703 Quick Serious Inquiry 27 These Heart-cutting, Soul-wounding Accidents.


24. With pa. pples., as soul-benumbed, soul-blinded, soul-born, soul-felt, soul-struck, soul-transfigured, etc.

1593 Nashe Christ's Tears Wks. (Grosart) IV. 173 Others there be of these *soule-benummed Atheists. 1612 Drayton Poly-olb. vi. 303 *Soul-blinded sots that creep In dirt. 1797 T. Park Sonn. 47 Every *soul-born rapture‥That flows from love sincere. a1635 Sibbes Confer. Christ & Mary Pref. (1656) 3 A discourse‥between a *soul-burthened sinner, and a burthen-removing Saviour. 1617 Sir W. Mure Misc. Poems xxi. 25 Whome snakie hatred, *soule conceav'd disdaine,‥Did long in long antipathie detaine. 1590 Spenser F.Q. i. x. 24 Patience‥comming to that *soule-diseased knight, Could hardly him intreat, to tell his griefe. 1798 W. Sotheby tr. Wieland's Oberon (1826) II. 62 A *soul-felt glance of heavenly joy. 1764 Churchill Candidate 144 Let no‥*soul-gall'd Bishop damn me with a note. 1794 Mrs. Radcliffe Myst. Udolpho i, Ah, paint her form, her *soul-illumined eyes. 1593 Nashe Christ's Tears Ep. Ded., Were it effectually recured, in my *soule-infused lines. 1603 J. Davies (Heref.) Microcosmos Wks. (Grosart) I. 14/2 Ladies, and Lords, purse-pinched, and *Soule-pain'd. 1949 Blunden After Bombing 3 The child *soul-struck with the yellow flag's new fire. 1632 Lithgow Trav. x. 435 The *soule-sunke sorrow of godlesse Epicures and Hypocrites. 1922 *Soul-transfigured [see soul-transfiguring, sense 22 above]. 1611 Shakes. Wint. T. v. i. 58 One worse [wife]‥would make her Sainted Spirit Againe possesse her Corps, and on this Stage‥appeare *Soule-vext. a1618 Sylvester Little Bartas 960 Wks. (Grosart) II. 93 How many sin-sick did hee inly cure; And deep *soule-wounded binde-up, and assure!


25. With adjs., as soul-blind, soul-deep, soul-hydroptic, etc.

1600 Tourneur Transf. Metam. xxxviii. 261 Th' exordium of ech soule-sweet argument. 1616 R. Niccols Overbury's Vision (Hunterian Club) 51 Those soule-blind men, whom they doe most betray. a1618 Sylvester Paradox agst. Libertie Wks. (Grosart) II. 56/1 That good‥wch soul-wise man must seek. 1704 Norris Ideal World ii. xii. 479 It hence follows that this‥immutable truth be the only soul-perfective truth. 1842 Card. Wiseman Prayer & Prayer-Bks. Ess. 1853 I. 379 Everything is heart-felt, soul-deep. 1855 Browning Grammarian's Funeral 95 He (soul-hydroptic with a sacred thirst). 1888 R. Buchanan City of Dream viii. 161 Then die! soul-sure thou hast not lived in vain.


26. Special combs., as †soul-ale, an ale-drinking at the funeral of a person; a dirge ale; soul-bearer, among the Akan peoples of West Africa, a person deemed to carry within him the external soul of a ruler or important person; soul-body Spiritualism, a spiritual body (see spiritual a. 4a); soul-bolts pl., ‘the bolts which fasten the soul in place’, used in various slang phrases expressive of surprise or shock; cf. soul-case below; soul brother, (a) a spiritual brother; (b) orig. U.S. Blacks, a fellow Black man; cf. soul sister below; soul-cake, a specially prepared cake or bun distributed in various northern or north-midland counties on All Souls' Day, esp. to parties of children who go ‘souling’; soul-candle, (a) ? one of several candles placed about the coffin at a funeral service; (b) [tr. Yiddish neshome licht, f. neshome soul (Heb. nešāmā) + licht light n. (G. licht)] in Judaism, a candle lit on the eve of the anniversary of a parent's death, and also on the eve of Yom Kippur (the custom is said to derive from Prov. xx. 27); soul-case, †(a) slang, the body; (b) U.S. and Austral. slang, ‘the casing of the soul’, chiefly used in slang phrases expressive of hardship or suffering; cf. soul-bolts above; soul-catcher, among various North American Indian peoples, a hollowed bone tube used by a medicine man to contain the soul of a sick person (see also quot. 1976); †soul chaplain = soul-priest; †soul-charm a., soul-charming; Soul City, an epithet applied to the Harlem area of New York city; also transf.; soul-doctor slang, (a) a clergyman; (b) a psychiatrist; †soul-driver, (a) a clergyman; (b) U.S., a person who trades the services of convicts, indentured servants, or slaves; soul food, (a) fig. spiritual nourishment; (b) orig. U.S. Blacks, the kind of food typically eaten by Black people, spec. those foodstuffs originating in the southern states of America; soul-force = satyagraha; soul-friend (see quot. 1891); also in extended use (see quots. 1929, 1979); soul-house, a model or representation of a house placed by the ancient Egyptians in a tomb to receive the soul of a dead person; soul kiss = deep kiss s.v. deep a. IV. c; so soul-kiss v. trans.; hence soul-kissing vbl. n.; soul music, (a) fig. (see quot. 1900); (b) a type of music popularized by Black singers which incorporates elements of rhythm and blues and gospel music; also ellipt.: see sense 4b; soul-pence, -pennies, money subscribed by the members of a guild to pay for soul-masses; †soul-priest, a priest having the special function of praying for the souls of the dead; soul-silver = soul-scot; soul sister orig. U.S. Blacks, a fellow Black woman; cf. soul-brother (b) above; soul-sleeper, one who holds the doctrine of psychopannychism; a psychopannychite; soul stuff, -substance, a hypothetical immaterial substance believed to form the ‘spirit’ or ‘self’ of each person (in some cultures also of animals and objects), and which is independent of the material body and outlives it.

1577 Harrison Descr. Eng. ii. i. (1877) i. 32 The superfluous numbers of idle waks,‥church-ales, helpe-ales, and *soule-ales, called also dirge-ales,‥are well diminished. 1951 E. L. R. Meyerowitz Sacred State of Akan ii. 51 Like every king‥, the queenmother has her elders, among whom are several spokeswomen, female akrafo or *soul-bearers. 1967 Times 14 Nov. 17/2 (Advt.), A Baga wood nimba shoulder mask,‥an important large Ashanti gold soul-bearer's disc,‥a large New Ireland Uli. 1961 *Soul body [see exteriorize v.]. 1971 Spiritualist Oct.–Dec. 6/2 Help each other that your soul-body may rise in beauty and can be admired when you reach the World of Spirit. 1850 H. Melville White Jacket II. xliv. 296 Start my *soul-bolts, maties, if any more Blue Peters and sailing signals fly at my fore! 1902 J. J. H. Burgess Some Shetland Folk 77 If du has, I'll knock the bloomin' sowl-bolts out of him. 1903 ‘T. Collins’ Such is Life vi. 234 ‘Wouldn't think that horse had a devil in him as big as a bull-dog,’ observed the horse-driver. ‘Shake the soul-bolt out of a man, s'posen you do stick to him.’ 1742–3 Observ. upon Methodists 18 Our glorious *Soul brother had it revealed to him in Spirit [etc.]. 1970 R. Lowell Notebook 151 We were an empire, soul-brothers To Babylon and China. 1978 Listener 20 July 90/1 Baudelaire recognised in Poe a soul brother and mirror image. 1959 Jazz Fall 291 It's one of those type LPs. I had all ‘soul brothers’. 1969 Listener 4 Sept. 319/3 And if you think the main feeling being expressed is self-pity (and the self-generated violence and frustrations of self-pity), then so what? This is strictly for soul-brothers. 1973 H. Nielsen Severed Key xiv. 144 I've got some soul brothers hustling baggage at LAX. 1686–7 Aubrey Remains (1881) 23 There is an old Rhythm or saying, A *Soule-cake, a Soule-cake, Have mercy on all Christen soules for a Soule-cake. 1896 P. H. Ditchfield Old Eng. Customs 167 On All Souls' Day‥it is still customary for children to go ‘a-souling’, and soul-cakes are still offered and eaten in Shropshire on this day. 1389 in Eng. Gilds (1870) 184 [Four] *saulecandels [shall be found, and used in the burial services]. 1978 I. B. Singer Shosha viii. 141 Toward the evening meal, she lit a large candle stuck in a pot of sand—a ‘soul candle’—and put on a silk holiday dress. 1796 Grose's Dict. Vulgar T. (ed. 3) s.v., ‘He made a hole in his *soul case,’ he wounded him. 1835 A. B. Longstreet Georgia Scenes 109 When you come to the last half mile of each heat, run his heart, liver, lights, and soul-case out of him. 1896 J. C. Harris Sister Jane 277 The way that hoss flung around wi' you was enough to jolt your soul-case loose. 1901 F. J. Gillen Diary 15 Apr. (1968) 34 Flies were celebrating some festival all night and worried the very soul cases out of us. 1962 R. Tullipan March into Morning 13 Then he got the bright idea of bringin' in orphan kids and working the soulcase off them until they turn eighteen and have to be paid more money. 1932 D. Jenness Indians of Canada 333 Peculiar to the medicine-men of the Haida, Tlinkit, and Tsimshian was the use of a special ‘*soul-catcher’, a bone tube, generally carved, for capturing the wandering souls of the sick and restoring them to their bodies. 1969 Times 22 Sept. 14/2 One invariably sees a face in the centre of a soul-catcher, a tube of hollowed bone into which the shaman [of the Tsimshian Indians] sucked the soul of a sick man—to keep it safe from harm while the illness lasted. 1976 Times 10 Nov. 18/4 A nine-inch bone soul catcher of the Tsimshian tribe reached £12,000.‥ A soul-catcher is a tube within which a medicine man would catch the imp that caused a sickness. 1550 Bale Eng. Votaries ii. Civg, In a winter night a *soule chaplaine of the court laye with her. 1598 Sylvester Du Bartas ii. ii. ii. Babylon 560 The *soule-charm Image of sweet Eloquence. 1964 N.Y. Times Mag. 23 Aug. 62/3 *Soul City, Harlem. 1971 B. Malamud Tenants 89 Lesser descended‥into Soul City by himself. 1977 M. Herr Dispatches (1978) 196 Danang was Soul City for many of us, it had showers and drinks. 1785 Grose Dict. Vulgar Tongue, *Soul doctor, or driver, a parson. 1962 D. Lessing Golden Notebook i. 202 Anna Wulf is sitting on a chair in front of a soul-doctor. 1699 B. E. New Dict. Canting Crew, *Soul-driver, a Parson. 1774 in Amer. Hist. Rev. (1900) VI. 77 Among them there was two Soul drivers. They are men who‥drive them [sc. servants and convicts] through the Country‥untill they can sell them to advantage. 1818 Massachusetts Spy 4 Nov. (Th.), Two men, in the character of soul drivers, lodged in the jail for safe keeping, five negros. 1846 Swell's Night Guide 132/2 Soul driver, a methodist parson. 1973 A. Dundes Mother Wit 230 Individuals who speculated in the purchase and sale of slaves were called ‘Negro-drivers’ or ‘soul-drivers’. c1200 Trin. Coll. Hom. 27 Godes word þat is þe *sowle fode. c1275 Serving Christ 41 in O.E. Misc. 91 We wyþ sunnes geteþ saulene fode. a1340 Hampole Psalter cvi. 10 In nede of saule fode. 1920 W. R. Lethaby in London Mercury Mar. 575 The history that can be seen and touched is a strong and stimulating soul-food, entirely different from vague and wearying written history. 1964 N.Y. Times Mag. 23 Aug. 62/3 Soul food, chitterlings, collard greens, ham hocks, grits, black-eyed peas and rice, and the like. 1969 L. Sanders Anderson Tapes (1970) xxviii. 71 This soul food crap—knuckles and hocks and greens. 1972 Times 15 Nov. 10/5 Soul food. Professional chef with knowledge of American Southern food‥wanted for a new restaurant‥in Chelsea. 1978 Broadcast's Programme Edinburgh TV Festival 8/3 The social centre of the series is a soul-food grocery owned by a West Indian entrepreneur. 1969 It 4–17 July 10/4 With *soul force we'll look to the needs of our brother In a world that's our universal home. 1977 Arab Times 14 Dec. 2/5 ‘The voice of women‥is a special soul-force in the struggle for a non-violent world,’ the 36-year-old pacificist leader from strife-torn Northern Ireland declared. 1891 The Month LXXIII. 221 He was the Generalissimo's‥‘*soul-friend’, as a confessor is called in Irish [= Ir. anam-chara]. 1896 Westm. Gaz. 5 Mar. 3/2 An old priest‥tried‥to play the ‘soul-friend’ to the bandit. 1929 I. M. Clark Church Discipline in Scotland i. 29 Columba had a method of entrusting those who had sinned to the spiritual care of individual monks of his community, who were termed soul-friends and whose duty it was to restore the souls of those penitents. 1979 Church Times 11 May 2/3 A special sort of job is being offered to spiritually gifted women in the diocese of Truro. The Bishop‥wants them to train to be ‘soul friends’—so that they may give spiritual guidance and direction with his formal backing and recognition. 1907 Petrie Gizeh & Rifeh vi. 14/2 The depth of grave below the *soul-house is inversely as the height of soil above it. 1953 H. Waugh Last seen Wearing 55 She calls him exciting and lets him *soul-kiss her. 1960 Wentworth & Flexner Dict. Amer. Slang 504/1 Soul kiss, a long passionate open-mouthed kiss, during which a lover's tongue licks, caresses, or explores the tongue and mouth of the beloved. 1970 R. Davies Fifth Business ii. 130 Some of them were experts in what were then called French kisses or soul kisses, which the irreverent called ‘swapping spits’. 1973 E. Jong Fear of Flying 82, I had the distinct sensation of kissing my own mouth—like when I was nine and used to wet a piece of my pillow with saliva and then kiss it to try to imagine what ‘soul-kissing’ was like. 1900 W. James Let. 20 July (1920) II. 133, I‥sit thinking of letters, and of the *soul-music with which they might be filled if my tongue could only utter the thoughts that arise in me to youward. 1961 Commonweal 24 Mar. 658 It's called ‘soul music’ because its practitioners have incorporated some of the backbeat, rhythms, and exclamatory melodic lines of Negro gospel music. 1968 P. Oliver Screening Blues 9 Soul music, which exploits the intensity of expression of religious song, the form and instrumental character of the blues and the maudlin sentiments of pop music. 1974 Black World Mar. 57/2 Soul music belched from windows where Black women wearing tired faces gazed impassively down at the hopeless street. 1980 Oxford Times 8 Feb. 15/1 They get really close to the style and spirit of American soul music. 1870 Toulmin Smith Eng. Gilds 181 That *soul-pence will be paid by the bretheren. Ibid., For collecting the *soul-pennies from the bretheren. 1484 Caxton Fables of Poge xii, Are ye here a *sowle preest or a paryssh preste? 1577 Fulke Confut. Purg. 172 The dead arose‥, threatning him, that he should dye for it, if he did not restore them their soulepriest. 1606 Reg. Mag. Sig. Scot. 646/2 Advocationem‥capellaniarum vulgo lie Saull-preistis‥infra ecclesiam collegiatam de Dumbar. 1355–6 Abingdon Rolls (Camden) 5 De *soule-seluer vjs. viijd. 1967 Wentworth & Flexner Dict. Amer. Slang Suppl. 705/1 *Soul sister, a female Negro. Negro use only. 1968 N.Y. Times 17 June 24 Plate glass in Negro-owned establishments remained intact and displayed the words, ‘Soul Brother’ or ‘Soul Sister’. 1976 Drum (E. Afr. ed.) June 10/3 African girls have always plaited their hair, and it was the soul sisters in America who were copying the girls in Africa. 1645 E. Pagitt Heresiogr. (ed. 2) 139 *Soule-Sleepers. That the soule dyeth with the body is an old and despicable Heresie. 1727 De Foe Hist. Appar. v. (1840) 45, I am none of the sect of soul sleepers. 1860 Southern Enterprise (Thomasville, Georgia) 13 June 2/5 Soul Sleepers is the name of a new religious sect which has recently made its appearance at Fairfield, Iowa.‥ They‥think that the soul is a mortal substance, and sleeps within the body until resurrection. 1887 J. Kirkland Zury 65 He and Peddicomb had both been connected with the little sect of Christians called ‘Soul-sleepers’. 1889 Cent. Dict., *Soul-stuff‥, the hypothetical substance of the soul; psychoplasm. 1909 W. James Mem. & Stud. (1911) viii. 202 If there were in the universe a lot of diffuse soul-stuff, unable of itself to get into consistent personal form‥it might get its head into the air, parasitically, so to speak, by profiting by weak spots in the armour of human minds. 1972 D. Davies Dict. Anthropol. 165/2 Soul-stuff, mana. The spiritual power with which every male in primitive societies seeks to enhance his prowess and standing in the tribe. It can only be gained by special feats.‥ It is also thought to be found in the hair. 1890 W. James Princ. Psychol. I. x. 318 But what is this abstract numerical principle of identity‥? May it be the indivisible *Soul-Substance, in which, according to the orthodox tradition, my faculties inhere? 1924 W. B. Selbie Psychol. Relig. ii. 28 Anthropologists are‥fairly generally agreed that underlying all religions is what they call animism, or belief in a soul substance discoverable not merely in men but in things. 1972 H. J. Eysenck Encycl. Psychol. II. 57/2 Heraclitus‥considered fire as the primary force and ‘soul-substance’ because it moved and transformed matter.


Hence ˈsoulhood, ˈsoulship, the condition or state of being a soul; soulful quality.

1882 H. C. Merivale Faucit of B. II. i. xix. 40 Many of these leaden caskets may carry yet, locked within them, some rough gem of Christian soulhood. 1893 Advance (Chicago) 15 June, Of the modification of the sinless perfection of Christ, of his ethical soulship. 1933 S. Sassoon Traveller to his Soul in Satirical Poems (ed. 2) 68 The problem which concerns me most‥Is, bluntly stated, ‘Have I got a soul?’ And, soulhood granted, while millenniums roll, Will it inhabit some congenial clime‥Anonymous in what we name ‘the Whole’? 1940 C. S. Lewis Problem of Pain ix. 129 Supposing, as I do, that the personality of the tame animals is largely the gift of man—that their mere sentience is reborn to soulhood in us as our mere soulhood is reborn to spirituality in Christ—I naturally suppose that very few animals indeed, in their wild state, attain to a ‘self’ or ego.