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frayed
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Moby Dick
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frayed
Used In
Moby Dick
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unspecified meaning
  • Lashed round and round to the fish’s back; pinioned in the turns upon turns in which, during the past night, the whale had reeled the involutions of the lines around him, the half torn body of the Parsee was seen; his sable raiment frayed to shreds; his distended eyes turned full upon old Ahab.
  • But once Tashtego’s senior, an old Gay-Head Indian among the crew, superstitiously asserted that not till he was full forty years old did Ahab become that way branded, and then it came upon him, not in the fury of any mortal fray, but in an elemental strife at sea.

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To see samples from other sources, click a word sense below:
as in: frayed cloth Define
showing wear with threads beginning to separate and hang loose
as in: frayed nerves Define
emotionally strained (worn thin)
as in: into the fray Define
a noisy fight, controversial debate, or other exciting situation
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