to be at one's beads


to be at one's beads
Bead Bead (b[=e]d), n. [OE. bede prayer, prayer bead, AS. bed, gebed, prayer; akin to D. bede, G. bitte, AS. biddan, to ask, bid, G. bitten to ask, and perh. to Gr. pei`qein to persuade, L. fidere to trust. Beads are used by the Roman Catholics to count their prayers, one bead being dropped down a string every time a prayer is said. Cf. Sp. cuenta bead, fr. contar to count. See {Bid}, in to bid beads, and {Bide}.] 1. A prayer. [Obs.] [1913 Webster]

2. A little perforated ball, to be strung on a thread, and worn for ornament; or used in a rosary for counting prayers, as by Roman Catholics and Mohammedans, whence the phrases to tell beads,

{to be at one's beads},

{to bid beads}, etc., meaning, to be at prayer. [1913 Webster]

3. Any small globular body; as, (a) A bubble in spirits. (b) A drop of sweat or other liquid. ``Cold beads of midnight dew.'' --Wordsworth. (c) A small knob of metal on a firearm, used for taking aim (whence the expression to draw a bead, for, to take aim). (d) (Arch.) A small molding of rounded surface, the section being usually an arc of a circle. It may be continuous, or broken into short embossments. (e) (Chem.) A glassy drop of molten flux, as borax or microcosmic salt, used as a solvent and color test for several mineral earths and oxides, as of iron, manganese, etc., before the blowpipe; as, the borax bead; the iron bead, etc. [1913 Webster]

{Bead and butt} (Carp.), framing in which the panels are flush, having beads stuck or run upon the two edges. --Knight.

{Bead mold}, a species of fungus or mold, the stems of which consist of single cells loosely jointed together so as to resemble a string of beads. [Written also {bead mould}.]

{Bead tool}, a cutting tool, having an edge curved so as to make beads or beading.

{Bead tree} (Bot.), a tree of the genus {Melia}, the best known species of which ({Melia azedarach}), has blue flowers which are very fragrant, and berries which are poisonous. [1913 Webster]


The Collaborative International Dictionary of English. 2000.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • tell one's beads — To say one s prayers • • • Main Entry: ↑bead * * * I tell (or say) one s beads use the beads of a rosary in counting prayers II see bead …   Useful english dictionary

  • beads — n. 1) (rel.) to say, count one s beads 2) to string beads 3) (rel.) prayer beads 4) a string of beads * * * count one s beads (rel.) prayer beads (rel.) to say a string of beads to string beads …   Combinatory dictionary

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  • beads|man — «BEEDZ muhn», noun, plural men. 1. a) Archaic. a person who says prayers, especially one who does so for another or others, and who is paid to do so. b) British. the inmate of a beadhouse. 2. Scottish. a public almsman or licensed beggar. Also,… …   Useful english dictionary

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  • beads — noun One or more beaded necklaces …   Wiktionary

  • Use of Beads at Prayers —     Use of Beads at Prayers     † Catholic Encyclopedia ► Use of Beads at Prayers     Beads variously strung together, according to the kind, order, and number of prayers in certain forms of devotion, are in common use among Catholics as an… …   Catholic encyclopedia

  • to bid beads — Bead Bead (b[=e]d), n. [OE. bede prayer, prayer bead, AS. bed, gebed, prayer; akin to D. bede, G. bitte, AS. biddan, to ask, bid, G. bitten to ask, and perh. to Gr. pei qein to persuade, L. fidere to trust. Beads are used by the Roman Catholics… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Buddhist prayer beads — Juzu Buddhist prayer beads are a traditional tool used to count the number of times a mantra is recited whilst meditating. They are similar to other forms of prayer beads used in various world religions; thus some call this tool the Buddhist… …   Wikipedia

  • Prayer beads — are traditionally used to keep count of the repetitions of prayers, chants or devotions by adherents of religion. Since the beads can be fingered in an automatic manner, they allow one to keep track of how many prayers have been said with a… …   Wikipedia