excess vs surfeit what difference

what is difference between excess and surfeit

English

Etymology

From Middle English exces (excess, ecstasy), from Old French exces, from Latin excessus (a going out, loss of self-possession), from excedere, excessum (to go out, go beyond). See exceed.

Pronunciation

  • IPA(key): /əkˈsɛs/, /ɛkˈsɛs/, /ɪk.ˈsɛs/, /ˈɛksɛs/
  • Rhymes: -ɛs

Noun

excess (countable and uncountable, plural excesses)

  1. The state of surpassing or going beyond a limit; the state of being beyond sufficiency, necessity, or duty; more than what is usual or proper.
    • c. 1597, William Shakespeare, King John, act 4, scene 2:
      To gild refined gold, to paint the lily,
      To throw a perfume on the violet, . . .
      Is wasteful and ridiculous excess.
    • c. 1690, William Walsh, “Jealosy”, in The Poetical Works of William Walsh (1797), page 19 (Google preview):
      That kills me with excess of grief, this with excess of joy.
  2. The degree or amount by which one thing or number exceeds another; remainder.
  3. An act of eating or drinking more than enough.
    • :
      And be not drunk with wine, wherein is excess.
    • 1667, John Milton, Paradise Lost, Book III:
      Fair Angel, thy desire . . .
      . . . leads to no excess
      That reaches blame
  4. (geometry) Spherical excess, the amount by which the sum of the three angles of a spherical triangle exceeds two right angles. The spherical excess is proportional to the area of the triangle.
  5. (Britain, insurance) A condition on an insurance policy by which the insured pays for a part of the claim.

Synonyms

  • (state of surpassing limits): See Thesaurus:excess
  • (US, insurance): deductible

Antonyms

  • deficiency

Derived terms

  • in excess of
  • spherical excess
  • to excess

Related terms

  • exceed
  • excessive

Translations

Adjective

excess (not comparable)

  1. More than is normal, necessary or specified.

Derived terms

  • excess baggage
  • excess kurtosis
  • excess return
  • nonexcess
  • refractory anaemia with excess blasts

Verb

excess (third-person singular simple present excesses, present participle excessing, simple past and past participle excessed)

  1. (US, transitive) To declare (an employee) surplus to requirements, such that he or she might not be given work.

See also

  • usury

Further reading

  • excess in Webster’s Revised Unabridged Dictionary, G. & C. Merriam, 1913.
  • excess in The Century Dictionary, New York, N.Y.: The Century Co., 1911.

Translations



English

Etymology

From Middle English surfeite, surfet, a borrowing from Anglo-Norman surfet, surfeit and Old French sorfet, sorfait, past participle of surfaire (to augment, exaggerate, exceed), from sur- (over) + faire (to do).

Pronunciation

  • (Received Pronunciation) IPA(key): /ˈsɜː.fɪt/
  • (US) IPA(key): /ˈsɝː.fɪt/
  • Rhymes: -ɜː(r)fɪt

Noun

surfeit (countable and uncountable, plural surfeits)

  1. (countable) An excessive amount of something.
  2. (uncountable) Overindulgence in either food or drink; overeating.
    • Now comes the sick hour that his surfeit made.
  3. (countable) A sickness or condition caused by overindulgence.
    • the Leaves they do eat to prevent surfeit and other diseases that are incident to those that heat their blood by travels
  4. Disgust caused by excess; satiety.
    • Matter and argument have been supplied abundantly, and even to surfeit.
    • c. 1579, Philip Sidney, The Defense of Poesy
      Now for similitudes in certain printed discourses, I think all herbalists, all stories of beasts, fowls, and fishes are rifled up, that they may come in multitudes to wait upon any of our conceits, which certainly is as absurd a surfeit to the ears as is possible.
  5. (countable) A group of skunks.

Synonyms

  • (excessive amount of something): excess, glut, overabundance, superfluity, surplus, ug
  • (overindulgence in food or drink): gluttony, overeating, overindulgence
  • (disgust caused by excess): nausea

Translations

Verb

surfeit (third-person singular simple present surfeits, present participle surfeiting, simple past and past participle surfeited)

  1. (transitive) To fill (something) to excess.
    Synonym: stuff
    • 1610, The Tempest, by Shakespeare, act 3 scene 3,
      You are three men of sin, whom Destiny,
      That hath to instrument this lower world
      And what is in’t,—the never-surfeited sea
      Hath caused to belch up you;
  2. (transitive) To feed (someone) to excess (on, upon or with something).
    Synonyms: glut, overfeed, stuff
    She surfeited her children on sweets.
    • 1665, Robert Boyle, Occasional Reflections upon Several Subjects, London: Henry Herringman, Reflection 10, p. 186,[3]
      [] ev’n the wholsomest Meats may be surfeited on, and there is nothing more unhealthy, than to feed very well, and do but very little Exercise.
    • 1906, O. Henry, “The Furnished Room” in The Four Million, New York: A.L. Burt, p. 240,[4]
      To the door of this, the twelfth house whose bell he had rung, came a housekeeper who made him think of an unwholesome, surfeited worm that had eaten its nut to a hollow shell and now sought to fill the vacancy with edible lodgers.
    • 1909, Arnold Bennett, The Old Wives’ Tale, Leipzig: Bernhard Tauchnitz, Volume 1, Book 2, Chapter 8, section 1, p. 318,[5]
      If he said of a dish, in the local tongue: “I could do a bit of that!” or if he simply smacked his lips over it, she would surfeit him with that dish.
  3. (transitive) To make (someone) sick as a result of overconsumption.
    • 1640, Thomas Fuller, Joseph’s Partie-Colored Coat, London: John Williams, p. ,[6]
      [] that proportion of meat surfetteth, and surchargeth the stomacks of some, which is not enough to satisfie the hunger of others,
    • 1755, George Colman, The Connoisseur, No. 49, 2 January, 1755, London: R. Baldwin, Volume 1, p. 299,[7]
      [] I imagine him poisoned by his wines, or surfeited by a favourite dish;
  4. (transitive, figuratively) To supply (someone) with something to excess; to disgust (someone) through overabundance.
    Synonyms: cloy, glut
    • 1697, Aphra Behn, “On an ungrateful and undeserving Mistress, whom he cou’d not help Loving” in Poems upon Several Occasions, London: Francis Saunders, p. 50,[8]
      While some glad Rival in her Arms did lye,
      Glutted with Love and surfeited with Joy.
    • 1795, Richard Cumberland, Henry, London: Charles Dilly, Volume 4, Book 10, Chapter 3, p. 18,[9]
      [] he shan’t shut me up in this dismal castle, and nauseate me with his surfeiting fondness:
    • 1844, Charles Lever, Tom Burke of “Ours”, Dublin: William Curry, Jun., Volume 2, Chapter 53, p. 31,[10]
      [] I suppose his majesty thought we had enough of it on the field, and did not wish to surfeit us with glory.
    • 1922, F. Scott Fitzgerald, The Beautiful and Damned, New York: Scribner, Book 2, Chapter 2, p. 210,[11]
      After supper, surfeited with the subject, she yawned.
    • 1977, Susan Sontag, “The Heroism of Vision” in On Photography, New York: Farrar, Straus and Giroux, p. 77,[12]
      The image-surfeited are likely to find sunsets corny; they now look, alas, too much like photographs.
  5. (transitive) To satisfy (someone’s appetite) to excess (both literally and figuratively).
    Synonym: glut
    • 1796, Maria Edgeworth, The Parent’s Assistant; or, Stories for Children, London: J. Johnson, Volume 2, “The Mimic,” p. 98,[13]
      [] his appetite for vulgar praise had not yet been surfeited;
    • 1922, Lenore Richards and Nola Treat, Quantity Cookery, Boston: Little, Brown, Chapter 2, p. 8,[14]
      Every one has had the experience of being served with more food than can be eaten with relish and without waste. The effect is to surfeit the appetite and to limit the variety which a patron may have,
  6. (intransitive, reflexive) To overeat or feed to excess (on or upon something).
    Synonyms: glut, indulge, overfeed, overindulge
    • 1611, King James Version of the Bible, Luke 21.34,[15]
      And take heed to yourselves, lest at any time your hearts be overcharged with surfeiting, and drunkenness, and cares of this life, and so that day come upon you unawares.
    • 1908, Jack London, The Iron Heel, New York: Macmillan, Chapter 17, p. 251,[16]
      Millions of people were starving, while the oligarchs and their supporters were surfeiting on the surplus.
    • 1917, R. L. Alsaker, Maintaining Health, New York: Frank E. Morrison, Chapter 16, p. 174,[17]
      Those who do not surfeit themselves do not weary quickly of any particular article of diet.
  7. (intransitive, reflexive, figuratively) To indulge (in something) to excess.
    • 1748, William Gilpin, A Dialogue upon the Gardens of the Right Honourable Viscount Cobham, at Stow in Buckinghamshire, London: B. Seeley, p. 54,[18]
      After surfeiting itself with the Feast here provided for it, the Eye, by using a little Exercise in travelling about the Country, grows hungry again, and returns to the Entertainment with fresh Appetite.
    • 1847, Charlotte Brontë, Jane Eyre, London: Smith, Elder, Volume 2, Chapter 1, p. 16,[19]
      [] a more fantastic idiot had never surfeited herself on sweet lies, and swallowed poison as if it were nectar.
    • 1869, Mark Twain, The Innocents Abroad, Hartford, CT: American Publishing Company, Chapter 47, p. 496,[20]
      [] the intemperate zeal with which middle-aged men are apt to surfeit themselves upon a seductive folly which they have tasted for the first time.
  8. (intransitive, reflexive) To become sick from overindulgence (both literally and figuratively).
    • c. 1596, William Shakespeare, The Merchant of Venice, Act I, Scene 2,[21]
      [] they are as sick that surfeit with too much as they that starve with nothing.
    • 1642, Thomas Fuller, The Holy State, Cambridge: John Williams, Book 1, Chapter 13, p. 43,[22]
      I must confesse at my first reading of them [the miracles of Hildegard of Bingen], my belief digested some, but surfeted on the rest:
    • 1669, John Dryden, The Wild Gallant, London: H. Herringman, Act II, Scene 2, p. 17,[23]
      He that serves many Mistresses, surfeits on his diet, and grows dead to the whole sex:
    • 1861, Herbert Spencer, Education: Intellectual, Moral, and Physical, London: Williams and Norgate, Chapter 4, p. 149,[24]
      But are children to be allowed to surfeit themselves? Shall they be suffered to take their fill of dainties and make themselves ill, as they certainly will do?

Derived terms

  • surfeiter

Translations

Related terms

  • surfeiting
  • surfeitly
  • surfeitness
  • surfeitous

Further reading

  • surfeit in Webster’s Revised Unabridged Dictionary, G. & C. Merriam, 1913.
  • surfeit in The Century Dictionary, New York, N.Y.: The Century Co., 1911.
  • surfeit at OneLook Dictionary Search

Anagrams

  • fustier

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