Dictionary > Trace


1. To mark out; to draw or delineate with marks; especially, to copy, as a drawing or engraving, by following the lines and marking them on a sheet superimposed, through which they appear; as, to trace a figure or an outline; a traced drawing. Some faintly traced features or outline of the mother and the child, slowly lading into the twilight of the woods. (Hawthorne)
2. To follow by some mark that has been left by a person or thing which has preceded; to follow by footsteps, tracks, or tokens. You may trace the deluge quite round the globe. (T. Burnet) I feel thy power . . . To trace the ways Of highest agents. (milton)
3. Hence, to follow the trace or track of. How all the way the prince on footpace traced. (Spenser)
4. To copy; to imitate. That servile path thou nobly dost decline, Of tracing word, and line by line. (Denham)
5. To walk over; to pass through; to traverse. We do tracethis alley up and down. (Shak)
Origin: OF. Tracier, F. Tracer, from (assumed) LL. Tractiare, fr.L. Tractus, p. P. Of trahere to draw. Cf. Abstract, Attract, Contract, Portratt, Tract, Trail, Train, Treat.
1. A mark left by anything passing; a track; a path; a course; a footprint; a vestige; as, the trace of a carriage or sled; the trace of a deer; a sinuous trace.
2. (Science: chemistry) A very small quantity of an element or compound in a given substance, especially when s
o small that the amount is not quantitatively determined in an analysis;-hence, in stating an analysis, often contracted to tr.
3. A mark, impression, or visible appearance of anything left when the thing itself no longer exists; remains; token; vestige. The shady empire shall retain no trace Of war or blood, but in the sylvan chase. (pope)
4. (Science: geometry) The intersection of a plane of projection, or an original plane, with a coordinate plane.
5. The ground plan of a work or works. Syn.-vestige; mark; token. See Vestige.
Origin: F. Trace. See Trace.

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