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BESEEK, v. be-sēk' [be, and seek]: OE., for beseech. BESEEM, v. bè-sẽm' [be, and Icel. saema, to be fitting, Ger. geziemen; Dut. betamen, to be fitting, to become]: to become; to befit; to be decent for. BESEEM ING, imp.: ADJ. becoming. BESEEMED, pp. bě-sẽmd'. BESEEMINGLY, ad. -, fitly; becomingly.

BESEEN, v. bè-sën' [be, and see]: OE. pp. of BESEE, adapted; becoming.

BESET, v. bě-set' [AS. besettan: be, and set]: to place in and around; to surround; to inclose; to press on all sides; to perplex. BESET TING, imp.: ADJ. habitually attending. BESET', pt. pp.-SYN. of 'beset': to encompass; encircle; surround; inclose; environ; besiege; embarrass.

BESHREW, v. bě-shrő [AS. be, about; searwan, to lay snares, to entrap]: in OE., to ensnare; to circumvent; to deceive; to curse; as a milder form of imprecation.

BESIDE, prep. bě-sid' [AS. be for bi, by; sidan, a side]: by the side; at the side of a person or thing; over and above. BESIDES, prep. bě-sidz', over and above: AD. or CONJ. more than that; moreover. BESIDE HIMSELF, out of his wits. SYN. of 'beside': also; besides; except; moreover; too; likewise; unless.

BESIEGE, v. bě-sēj' [AS. be; F. siège, a siege, a seat]: to surround any place with soldiers, as a city or town, in order to take possession of it by force; to beset. BESIE GING, imp.: ADJ. employed in a siege; surrounding with armed forces. BESIEGED, pp. be-sejd. BESIE GER, n. one who. BESIEGEMENT, the act of besieging; the state of being besieged.-SYN. of 'besiege': to beset; to encompass; invest; block up: hem in; environ; beleaguer.


BESIT, v. bě-siť [AS. be, about, and sit]: in OE., to suit; to become.

BESLAVER, v. bě-slăv'er: to slaver; to defile with


BESLERIA, n. běs-lë'ri-a [named after Basil Besler, apothecary at Nuremberg, joint editor of a sumptuous botanical work]: genus of the Scrophulariacea (Figworts). The species are ornamental, and several of them have been introduced from the West Indies and S. America.

BESLOBBER, v.: to beslaver.

BESMEAR, v. bě-smër' [be, and smear]: to cover all over; to soil with dirt. BESMEAR'ING, imp. BESMEARED, pp. bě-směrd'.

BESMIRCH, v. bě směrch': to defile with mud, filth, or the like.

BESOM, n. bë'zům [AS. besem-from besmas, rods: Ger. besen]: a bundle of twigs or rods for sweeping with; a large brush of birch or hair for sweeping; a broom: V. to Sweep. BE SOMING, imp. BESOMED, pp. be 'zumd.


BESORT, v. bě-sort' [be, and sort]: in OE., to sort out or arrange suitably, to suit; to become: N. suitable company; attendance.

BESOT, bě-sot' [AS. be; Ger. satt, full: F. sot, dull, gross]: to stupefy; to make dull or senseless. BESOTTING, imp. BESOTTED, pp. in OE., doted on: ADJ. infatuated; stupefied. BESOT TEDLY, ad. . BESOT TEDNESS, stupidity; infatuation. BESOT TINGLY, ad. -lì.



BESPANGLE, v. bě-spắng'gl [AS. be; Gael. spang, anything sparkling: Dut. spang, a spangle]. to adorn with spangles; to cover with glittering objects. BESPAN'GLING, imp. BESPANGLED, pp. bě-spång' gld.

BESPATTER, v. bě-spăt tér [Dut. bespatten, to splash: be, and spatter]: to sprinkle with water or mud; to dirty by throwing or scattering filth; to cover or asperse with slanders or reproaches. BESPATTERING, imp. BESPATTERED, pp. -térd.

BESPEAK, v. bě-spēk' [AS. be, by; sprecan, to speak: be, and speak]: to address or speak; to speak for beforehand; to engage for a future time; to forebode; to show. BESPEAK ER, n. one who. BESPEAKING, imp. BESPOKE, pt. bě-spōk'. BESPOKEN, pp. bě-spõ’kn.

BESPET, v. bě-spět, or BESPIT, v. bě-spiť [be, and spit]: in OE., to daub or besmear with spittle.

BESPREAD, v. bě-sprěď [AS. be; Dut. spreeden; Dan. sprede, to spread or scatter]: to spread about or over; to cover over. BESPREAD'ING, imp. BESPREAD', pp.

BESPRENT, v. pp. and a. bě-sprěnt [AS. besprengan]: in OE., besprinkled.

BESPRINKLE, v. bě-spring'kl [AS. be; Dut. sprenkelen, to sprinkle]: to scatter over. BESPRIN KLING, imp. BESPRIN KLED, pp. -kld.

BESSARABIA, bes-sa-rā'be-a, or bes-sá-rá'be-â: govt in the s.w. of Russia, on the Roumanian frontier. The area, enlarged by the restoration, 1878, of the portion ceded to Moldavia 1856, is about 18,000 sq. m.; the population is composed of Russians, Poles, Wallachians, Moldavians, Bulgarians, Greeks, Armenians, Jews, Germans, and Tatars, with a sprinkling of gypsies. The Dniester flows along the whole of its n. and e. boundaries; the Pruth separates it from Moldavia on the w.; and it has the Danube on the s. B. is intersected by several considerable streams, which are much reduced by the summer heats. The climate is, on the whole, mild and salubrious. In the n.w. the country is traversed by well-wooded offshoots of the Carpathian Mountains. Generally, however, B. is flat and fertile, but for want of proper cultivation the land does not yield the rich returns it is capable of doing. Wheat, barley, and millet are raised to some extent, as well as hemp, flax, tobacco, fruit, and wine; but the breeding of cattle is the chief business of the inhabitants. Salt, cattle, wool, and tallow are exported; leather, soap, and candles are manufactured. B., which fell under the


power of the Turks, 1503, suffered heavily in all wars with Russia, and was ceded to Russia, 1812. By the treaty of Paris, the portions of B. lying along the Pruth and the Danube-about 4,000 sq. m. with some 200,000 inhabitants, were assigned to Moldavia; at the Berlin Congress, 1878, this region was again transferred to Russia. Pop. of B. (1882) 1,419,762; (1889) est. 1,588,329.

BESSARION, bes-sa'ri-on, JOHANNES, or BASILIUS 1395-1472, Nov. 19; b. Trebizond, on the Black Sea: on of the earliest of those scholars who, in the 15th c., transplanted Greek literature and philosophy into the west, and rescued the mind of Christendom from the trammels of scholasticism. B. imbibed his love of Plato's writings from his tutor, Gemistus Pletho. As Bp. of Nicæa, B. accompanied the Greek emperor, John Palæologus, to Italy; and effected, at the Council of Florence, 1439, a brief union between the Greek and the Roman Churches. Soon afterwards, he joined the Roman Church, but always retained a glowing love of his native land. He was made cardinal by Pope Eugene IV., 1439. Ten years later, Nicholas V. created him Cardinal-bishop of Sabina, and in the same year Bp. of Frascati. For five years, also, he discharged the duties of papal legate at Bologna. After the fall of Constantinople, B. visited Germany; and at the diets of Nuremberg, Worms, and Vienna, endeavored to promote a crusade against the Turks. In philosophy, he professed to be a follower of Plato, but without depreciation of Aristotle. His writings, consisting of Latin translations of Greek authors, defensive treatises on the Platonic philosophy, with discourses and letters, have never been published collectively. Twice he was nearly elected pope; but his partiality for the heathen philosophy was probably regarded as some disqualification by the sacred college. B. died at Ravenna, leaving his collection of 600 valuable Greek MSS. to the St. Mark's Library, Venice.

BESSÉGES: industrious and thriving town of France, in the n. of the dept. of Gard, 11 m. n. from Alais; on the river Ceze. A railway connects B. with Alais. There are extensive coal-mines in the neighborhood. Pop. (1881) 10,052; (1886) 9,169; (1891) 10,653.

BESSEL, běs'sel, FRIEDRICH WILHELM: 1784, July 22— 1846, March 7; b. Minden: astronomer. In 1806, he was, on the recommendation of Olbers, whom he had greatly assisted by his remarkable expertness in calculation, appointed assistant to Schröter at Lilienthal. In 1810, he published his researches on the orbit of the great comet of 1807, which gained the Lalande prize of the Paris Acad. of Sciences. In the same year he was appointed director of the new observatory to be erected by the king of Prussia at Königsberg, and repairing thither immediately, superintended the erection and the mounting of the instruments. The establishment was completed in three years. In 1818, B. published his Fundamenta Astronomia-giving the results of Bradley's Greenwich observations-a work upon which he had been engaged 11 years. It is of the


highest value to astronomers. It is described by a competent authority as having laid the foundations of the principal improvements which have been made in astronomy since the date of its publication. In 1830 appeared his Tabula Regiomontana, forming a kind of supplement to the above work. Besides numerous important papers (nearly 200 in all) scattered through various scientit.c Journals, he published an inquiry on the seconds' pendulum for Berlin (1828, and again in 1837), Astronomical Researches (2 vols., Königsb. 1841-42). His paper on the precession of the equinoxes gained him the prize of the Berlin Acad. After a series of three years' observations he succeeded in determining the annual parallax of the fixed star 61 Cygni (see STARS), an achievement honorable not only as the first of its kind, but for the marvellous skill and patience necessary for its accomplishment. In the years 1824-33, B. made a series of 75,011 observations in 536 sittings, and completed a catalogue of stars (extending to the ninth magnitude) within the zone from 15° n. to 15° s. declination. These were afterward reduced by Weisse. In 1840, B. indicated the probable existence of the planet Neptune, afterward discovered by LeVerrier.

BESSEMER, běs' se-mér: town in Jefferson co. Ala., on the Alabama Great Southern, the Louisville and Nashville, the Georgia Pacific, and the Kansas City and Memphis railroads; 11 m. from Birmingham, the co. seat. It is in a rich iron and coal mining district; and has blast furnaces, foundries, machine shops, planing, wood, and brick mills, and other industries. It has 1 daily and 2 weekly newspapers, and 1 national (cap. $50,000) and 1 savings (cap. $100,000) bank. Pop. (1890) 4,544.

BESSEMER, běs'se-mér, Sir HENRY: inventor: b. Hertfordshire, England, 1813, Jan. 9. He showed great aptitude for drawing and modeling in clay at an early age; studied fine arts, engineering, and mechanics without a teacher; removed to London 1831, and exhibited at the Royal Acad. 1833; invented a series of five machines to do away with manual labor and cheapen the cost of producing bronze powder; and read before the British Assoc. 1856 his first paper on the manufacture of malleable iron and steel (see BESSEMER STEEL). The first recognition of the importance of his discovery was made by the British Institution of Civil Engineers about 1858, when it awarded him the gold Telford medal for a paper describing his process. In 1872 he was awarded the Albert gold medal of the Soc. of Arts; 1877 was elected a member of the Institution of Civil Engineers, and was awarded by it the first Howard quinquennial prize; 1879 was elected a fellow of the Royal Soc., and was knighted by Queen Victoria; and 1880 was presented with the freedom and livery of the Company of Turners, and Oct. 6 with the freedom of the City of London. B. has also invented the stamp with perforated figures, used in the English stamp office, and in many American banks and business houses; the machine for stamping Utrecht velvet; a method of manufacturing specula for reflecting telescopes, and a ship with a swinging saloon to obviate seasickness, which was a failure.


BESSEMER STEEL, běs'se-mer [so named after its in ventor]: steel made from cast-iron, mixed with a certain proportion of pure iron, from which all the carbon, etc., has been removed, by exposing the molten mass to a current of air. The Bessemer process, that of Sir Henry Bessemer, patented 1856, is the boldest and most noted attempt yet made to improve on the older methods of making both malleable iron and steel. Bessemer's first idea was to blow air through molten cast-iron till the whole of the carbon was oxidized when malleable iron was required, and to stop the blowing when a sufficient degree of decarburization was effected in order to produce steel. He has hitherto failed to produce malleable iron of the least service by his process, so that, as a metallurgical operation,


Bessemer Converting Vessel:

a, a, a, tuyères; b, air-space; c, melted metal.

it is at present confined to the manufacture of steel. But neither can serviceable steel be made by the plan first specified by Bessemer, except from the best charcoal iron, such as the Swedish. In England, where charcoal iron is not used for this purpose, the process can be successfully conducted only by first oxidizing the whole of the carbon and silicon, and then restoring the proper amount of carbon by the addition of a small quantity of a peculiar castiron of known composition, called spiegeleisen. Moreover, until recently, hæmatite pig was the only kind of English iron which could be employed, as that made from clay iron-stone contained too much phosphorus and sulphur,

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