WHET
A morning's draught, commonly [white wine, supposed to whet or sharpen the appetite.

The 1811 Dictionary of the Vulgar Tongue.

Whet (?), v. t. [imp. & p. p. Whetted; p. pr. & vb. n. Whetting.] [AS. hwettan; akin to D. wetten, G. wetzen, OHG. wezzen, Icel. hvetja, Sw. vattja, and AS. hwaet vigorous, brave, OS. hwat, OHG. waz, was, sharp, Icel. hvatr, bold, active, Sw. hvass sharp, Dan. hvas, Goth. hwassaba sharply, and probably to Skr. cud to impel, urge on.]

1.

To rub or on with some substance, as a piece of stone, for the purpose of sharpening; to sharpen by attrition; as, to whet a knife.

The mower whets his scythe. Milton.

Here roams the wolf, the eagle whets his beak. Byron.

2.

To make sharp, keen, or eager; to excite; to stimulate; as, to whet the appetite or the courage.

Since Cassius first did whet me against Caesar, I have not slept. Shak.

To whet on, To whet forward, to urge on or forward; to instigate.

Shak.

 

© Webster 1913.


Whet, n.

1.

The act of whetting.

2.

That which whets or sharpens; esp., an appetizer.

"Sips, drams, and whets."

Spectator.

Whet slate Min., a variety of slate used for sharpening cutting instruments; novaculite; -- called also whetstone slate, and oilstone.

 

© Webster 1913.

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