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Ellipse   Listen
noun
Ellipse  n.  
1.
(Geom.) An oval or oblong figure, bounded by a regular curve, which corresponds to an oblique projection of a circle, or an oblique section of a cone through its opposite sides. The greatest diameter of the ellipse is the major axis, and the least diameter is the minor axis. See Conic section, under Conic, and cf. Focus.
2.
(Gram.) Omission. See Ellipsis.
3.
The elliptical orbit of a planet. "The Sun flies forward to his brother Sun; The dark Earth follows wheeled in her ellipse."






Collaborative International Dictionary of English 0.48








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"Ellipse" Quotes from Famous Books



... at the corner of New York Avenue and Seventeenth Street. To the right gleamed the lights of the cavalry corral on the ellipse back of the White House, and on the left were the buildings of the quartermaster general's depot. Lloyd drew Baker to ...
— The Lost Despatch • Natalie Sumner Lincoln

... drawing in the cave (Number 3) was an ellipse, three feet in length and one foot ten inches in breadth: the outside line of this painting was of a deep blue colour, the body of the ellipse being of a bright yellow dotted over with red lines and spots, whilst across it ran two transverse lines of blue. The portion of ...
— Journals Of Two Expeditions Of Discovery In North-West And Western Australia, Vol. 1 (of 2) • George Grey

... its way through, assuming an hour glass shape when about half out. The rapid rotation of the spore continues during the process of emerging, and after about a minute it has fully freed itself (Fig 1, a). It immediately assumes the form of an ellipse or oval, and darts off with great speed, revolving on its major axis as it does so. Its contents are nearly all massed in the posterior half, the comparatively clear portion invariably pointing in advance. When it meets an obstacle, it partially flattens itself against it, then ...
— Scientific American Supplement, No. 460, October 25, 1884 • Various

... similarly. It is made of fine twine (one-inch mesh), preferably from the bark of one of the fig-trees or the brown kurrajong, tightly stretched on two pieces of lawyer-cane each bent to form the half of an irregular ellipse. This net ("moorgaroo") is manipulated by two men working in concert, principally for the capture of eels. They do not wait for the eel to come to them, but by shrewd scrutiny discover its whereabouts under the bank of the creek or ...
— Tropic Days • E. J. Banfield

... of only half an ellipse, the southern half being replaced by the area H, which we have already described. It has a rectangular niche to the west containing a fine trilithon with a cover-slab nearly ...
— Rough Stone Monuments and Their Builders • T. Eric Peet

... of note, that the nice balance between shall and will is much impaired by the constant use of the ellipse, "I'll, you'll," &c.; and that volition and intention are, to a great extent, co-existent and inseparable in the first person: the metaphysical reasons for this do ...
— Notes and Queries, Number 188, June 4, 1853 • Various

... much aye doth heed'; 'which is nonsense' says Prof. Skeat. But the sentence is an example of ellipse, a figure which Chatterton affected a good deal, and fully expressed would run 'She—not willing to take much, ever doth heed not to take much', which would of course be ...
— The Rowley Poems • Thomas Chatterton

... the beach, which much resembled, in its mode of construction, those of Otaheite. It was pleasantly situated in a grove of trees, and appeared to be about thirty feet long, and seven or eight high, with an open end, which represented an ellipse divided transversely. Before it, was spread something white on a few bushes; which we conjectured to be a fishing net, and, to appearance, of a very ...
— A General History and Collection of Voyages and Travels, Vol. 15 (of 18) • Robert Kerr

... bend and saw in front of us a clear placid reach, on which the reds and purples were serenely dying, and at a distance of about half a mile, a fine bridge with the large central arch forming with its reflection in the water a perfect ellipse. ...
— Two Summers in Guyenne • Edward Harrison Barker

... a ship lying at the forward end of the ellipse for a moment into the sky and then it swung slowly round until it rested on the path from the observatory to the valley, and Lennard for a moment felt himself blinded by its rays. Then it lifted and a most ...
— The World Peril of 1910 • George Griffith

... to the Spanish line, and pouring in its fire as it went from a distance of forty-five hundred yards, the American squadron swept round in a long ellipse and sailed back, now bringing its starboard batteries into play. Six times it passed over this course, the last two at the distance of two thousand yards. From the great cannon, and from the batteries of smaller rapid-fire guns, a steady stream of projectiles ...
— Historical Tales - The Romance of Reality - Volume VII • Charles Morris

... centres of the two planets is 59.9643 of the earth's equatorial radii, or only about 237,000 miles. I say the mean or average interval. But it must be borne in mind that the form of the moon's orbit being an ellipse of eccentricity amounting to no less than 0.05484 of the major semi-axis of the ellipse itself, and the earth's centre being situated in its focus, if I could, in any manner, contrive to meet the moon, as it were, in its perigee, the above mentioned distance would be materially diminished. But, ...
— The Works of Edgar Allan Poe - Volume 1 (of 5) of the Raven Edition • Edgar Allan Poe

... of human events is so little susceptible of that kind of evidence which can compel our belief; so many are the disturbing forces which, in every cycle or ellipse of changes, modify the motion given by the first projection; and every age has, or imagines it has, its own circumstances, which render past experience no longer applicable to the present case; that there will never be wanting answers, and explanations, and specious flatteries of hope, ...
— Specimens of the Table Talk of S.T.Coleridge • Coleridge

... was attracted to a fixed centre by a force which diminished as the square of the distance at which it operated increased, such a body, thus deflected from its rectilinear path, would describe an ellipse," etc. Not only does this deduction, being made in the ...
— Atlantic Monthly Vol. 6, No. 33, July, 1860 • Various

... few hundred feet of the low-lying town, then the screw churned up a furious wake as the anxious Tagalog on the bridge swung her back into the Straits to circle in a new attempt. Carried by the tidal rush the old tub circled in a great ellipse. ...
— Terry - A Tale of the Hill People • Charles Goff Thomson

... proclaim her whereabouts to those who still remember her. It is good to pause awhile and etheralize oneself in the neighbourhood of her dust. She lived a quiet life in an old brown house, since rebuilt, that overlooks the Coliseum, on whose comely ellipse and blood-stained history she loved to pasture eyes and imagination. Often I walked thence with her, in those sparkling mornings, up the Palatine hill, to stroll about the ilexes and roses in view of the ...
— Alone • Norman Douglas

... a circle with a single centre; he is an ellipse with a double focus. Facts form one of these, and ...
— Les Miserables - Complete in Five Volumes • Victor Hugo

... their mystical affinity is what haunts you as you make your round of the vast ellipse, with the well-groomed men about you and the well-groomed horses beyond ...
— Henry James, Jr. • William Dean Howells

... happened to catch sight of a cloud of paroquets that swept in a screaming ellipse for a better branch to nest in and added the one touch of gorgeous color needed to make the whole scene utterly unearthly and unlike anything he had ever dreamed of, or had seen in pictures, or had had described to him. He stood at gaze—forgetful of the stone that had attracted ...
— Rung Ho! • Talbot Mundy

... forward, this time along a narrow gallery closed at the end with double wooden doors. As our procession reached these they opened, and before us lay the crowning wonder of this marvellous fane, a vast, ellipse-shaped apse. Now we understood. The plan of the temple was the plan of the looped pillar which stood upon the brow of the Peak, and as we rightly guessed, its dimensions were ...
— Ayesha - The Further History of She-Who-Must-Be-Obeyed • H. Rider Haggard

... walled-plain, 111 miles in diameter, situated close to the N.W. limb, and consequently always foreshortened into a more or less elongated ellipse. But for this it would be one of the grandest objects in the first quadrant. Under the designation of "Mercurius Falsus" it received great attention from Schroter, who gives several representations of it in his Selenotopographische Fragmente, which, though drawn in his usual conventional style, ...
— The Moon - A Full Description and Map of its Principal Physical Features • Thomas Gwyn Elger

... born a poet, and mathematics borders upon poetry; he saw in algebra "the most magnificent flights," and the figures of analytical geometry unrolled themselves in his imagination "in superb strophes"; the Ellipse, "the trajectory of the planets, with its two related foci, sending from one to the other a constant sum of vector radii"; the Hyperbole, "with repulsive foci, the desperate curve which plunges into space in infinite tentacles, approaching closer and closer to a straight line, the asymptote, without ...
— Fabre, Poet of Science • Dr. G.V. (C.V.) Legros

... above the bridge, the creek walls open in an ellipse, narrowing abruptly where the bridge spans them. This open space has been scoured by floods until the bedrock lies like a polished floor and it was now dry except where the piers of the bridge stood in stagnant pools. Once within this amphitheater whose vertical walls rise twenty ...
— Laramie Holds the Range • Frank H. Spearman

... centre is the so-called "altar stone," over fifteen feet long; in a line with this, through the opening of the ellipse, is the "Friar's Heel," a monolith standing outside the circles. The larger stones or "sarsens" are natural to the Marlborough Downs, but the unhewn or "blue" stones are mysterious. They are composed of ...
— Wanderings in Wessex - An Exploration of the Southern Realm from Itchen to Otter • Edric Holmes

... special postmark for Registered letters was brought into use, consisting of a large ellipse with "Registered" above and "Gambia" below, both following the line of curve, and with date in centre and control letter above, either B or C, the latter often being found reversed or upside down. This ...
— Gambia • Frederick John Melville

... flag is dark blue with a narrow red border on all four sides; centered is a red-bordered, pointed, vertical ellipse containing a beach scene, outrigger canoe with sail, and a palm tree with the word GUAM superimposed in bold red letters; US flag ...
— The 1996 CIA Factbook • United States. Central Intelligence Agency.

... the Lowell Institute last winter, showed that in his science, also, similarity of outline does not always indicate identity of character. Compare the different circles,—the perfect circle, in which every point of the periphery is at the same distance from the centre, with an ellipse in which the variation from the true circle is so slight as to be almost imperceptible to the eye; yet the latter, like all ellipses, has its two foci by which it differs from a circle, and to refer it to the family of circles ...
— Atlantic Monthly, Vol. 9, No. 54, April, 1862 • Various

... one of its lakes and meadows, forests and wild gardens, has a charm and a grandeur of its own. There are lakes of many kinds. One named for the painter, now dead, who many times sketched and dreamed on its shores, is a beautiful ellipse; and its entire edge carries a purple shadow matting of the crowding forest. Its placid surface reflects peak and snow, cloud and sky, and mingling with these are the green and gold of pond-lily glory. Another lake is stowed away in an utterly wild place. ...
— Wild Life on the Rockies • Enos A. Mills

... of the upper portion lie immediately below those of the lower, but this is not always the case. Sometimes the whole of the upper portion uniting the arcs of the ends is struck from one centre, in which case the arch becomes a three-centred one, being, in fact, half an ellipse. Towards the close of the style the curvature of the upper portion is so slight that it can hardly be distinguished from a straight line, and as the debasement progressed it became really straight. Ogee arches are also found at this period, and ...
— Our Homeland Churches and How to Study Them • Sidney Heath

... movement which is developed taxes the computing genius of the ablest astronomer. The path which our earth follows around the sun, though it may in general and for convenience be described as a variable ellipse, is, in fact, a line of such complication that if we should essay a diagram of it on the scale of this page it would not be possible to represent any considerable part of its deviations. These, in fact, would elude depiction, even if the draughtsman ...
— Outlines of the Earth's History - A Popular Study in Physiography • Nathaniel Southgate Shaler

... only form of ancient entertainment which has retained something of its pristine simplicity. To-day, as in the old Roman circuses, tiers of seats run round the course, which in the larger circuses is still in the form of an ellipse, with its vertical axis, where the horses and performers enter, cut away. But the modern world has nothing in this connection to compare with the Circus Maximus of Rome, which, according to Pliny, held a quarter of a million spectators. It is singular, ...
— America Through the Spectacles of an Oriental Diplomat • Wu Tingfang

... at all crowned my efforts, though I 'divided my swift mind,' now hither, now thither, in a way that I felt sure would have made AEneas green with envy: but the dimly-seen oval remained as provokingly blank as ever—a mere Ellipse, as if in some mathematical diagram, without even the Foci that might be made to do duty as a nose and a mouth. Gradually, however, the conviction came upon me that I could, by a certain concentration of thought, think the veil away, and so get a glimpse of the mysterious face—as to which the ...
— Sylvie and Bruno • Lewis Carroll

... found on the body of the snake in Plate LX, and in other places. Other important questions can be settled by comparison of the two plates. For example, at Palenque we often find a sign composed of a half ellipse, inside of which bars are drawn. I shall elsewhere show that there is reason to believe the ellipse is to represent the concave of the sky, its diameter to be the level earth, and in some cases at least the bars to be the descending ...
— Studies in Central American Picture-Writing • Edward S. Holden

... attract one another at all, but only moved under the influence of the sun, they would move in orbits having the form of ellipses. They are found to move very nearly in such orbits, only the actual path deviates from an ellipse, now in one direction and then in another, and it slowly changes its position from year to year. These deviations are due to the pull of the other planets, and by measuring the deviations we can determine ...
— Side-lights on Astronomy and Kindred Fields of Popular Science • Simon Newcomb

... forcing the suck currents at a great speed, and forces the comet current to pass through sun currents. Some comets pass in and out of their sun currents at regular intervals and are called periodic, i.e., its orbit is an ellipse. ...
— ABC's of Science • Charles Oliver

... absolutely on our sole power; with confused ideas the contrary is the case. (12) They are often formed against our will. VII. (108:13) The mind can determine in many ways the ideas of things, which the understanding forms from other ideas: thus, for instance, in order to define the plane of an ellipse, it supposes a point adhering to a cord to be moved around two centers, or, again, it conceives an infinity of points, always in the same fixed relation to a given straight line, angle of the vertex of the cone, or in an infinity ...
— On the Improvement of the Understanding • Baruch Spinoza [Benedict de Spinoza]

... diverging or converging lines, an obtuse angle, a circle. No. 10 a different set of geometrical shapes, viz. sociles-triangles, scolene-triangles, rectangle, rhomb, rhomboid, trapezoid, trapeziums, ellipse or oval. Having arrived at No. 11, the class find here the European costumes, viz. Englishman, Frenchman, Russian, Swiss, Italian, German, Scotchman, Welchman, Irishman, Turk, Norwegian, Spaniard, Prussian, Icelander, Dutchman, ...
— The Infant System - For Developing the Intellectual and Moral Powers of all Children, - from One to Seven years of Age • Samuel Wilderspin

... by the Union Army was a semi-ellipse, with the left resting on the Rappahannock and the right on the Rapidan. Its centre was at Bullock's House, about three-fourths of a mile north of Chancellorsville. The approaches were well guarded with artillery, and the line partially intrenched. The enemy did not assail it. They made a ...
— Chancellorsville and Gettysburg - Campaigns of the Civil War - VI • Abner Doubleday

... where, indeed, none grow. There are extensive lakes, always under water, even at the lowest ebb of the inundation. They are of all sizes and every possible configuration, from the complete circle through all the degrees of the ellipse, and not unfrequently in the form of a belt, like the channel of a river running for scores of miles between what might readily be mistaken for banks covered with a continuous thicket of low bushes, which are nothing ...
— Our Young Folks—Vol. I, No. II, February 1865 - An Illustrated Magazine for Boys and Girls • Various

... by the squadron, are taken in charge by the scouts, with Jupiter for their chief, and are forced to accompany the fleet, but not all are impressed. If a strange comet undertakes to run across Jupiter's bows the latter brings it to, and makes prize of it by throwing it into a relatively small ellipse with the sun for its focus. Thenceforth, unless, as happened to the unhappy comet of Lexell, it encounters Jupiter again in such a way as to be diverted by him into a more distant orbit, it can never get away. About thirty comets are now known to have thus been captured by the great ...
— Curiosities of the Sky • Garrett Serviss

... defined by certain formulas. From the point of view of the impression they make on our eye these geometrical figures may assume very varied shapes. By perspective the cube may be transformed into a pyramid or a square, the circle into an ellipse or a straight line. Moreover, the consideration of these fictitious shapes is far more important than that of the real shapes, for it is they and they alone that we see and that can be reproduced by photography or in pictures. In certain cases there is more truth ...
— The Crowd • Gustave le Bon

... we except the speeches, each of which by the necessity of the case is more or less a definite and detachable unit, the periods flow into one another. Like the orbit of a planet, the movement of the verse never closes its ellipse and begins again. Each of the twelve books is a single organic rhythmical structure. But one cannot very well ...
— The Principles of English Versification • Paull Franklin Baum

... not whether you have ever seen a pair of rackets, or Indian snow-shoes, but their description is easy. You have seen the rackets used in ball-play. Well, now, fancy a hoop, not of circular form, but forced into an elongated pointed ellipse, very much after the shape of the impression that a capsized boat would make in snow; fancy this about three feet long, and a foot across at its widest, closely netted over with gut or deer-thong, with bars in the middle to rest the foot upon, and a small hole to allow play to the toes, and you ...
— The Hunters' Feast - Conversations Around the Camp Fire • Mayne Reid

... of which they built a village and called it Shi-ti-mu. Numerous traces of small-roomed houses can be seen on this mound and on some of the lower surroundings. The uneven summit is about 300 by 200 feet, and the village seems to have been built in the form of an irregular ellipse, but the ...
— A Study of Pueblo Architecture: Tusayan and Cibola • Victor Mindeleff and Cosmos Mindeleff



Words linked to "Ellipse" :   elliptical, conic, circle, conic section, oval



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