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The Devil's Dictionary:    

Definition of Excess

  EXCESS   noun
In morals, an indulgence that enforces by appropriate penalties the law of moderation.
  Hail, high Excess -- especially in wine,
      To thee in worship do I bend the knee
      Who preach abstemiousness unto me --
  My skull thy pulpit, as my paunch thy shrine.
  Precept on precept, aye, and line on line,
      Could ne'er persuade so sweetly to agree
      With reason as thy touch, exact and free,
  Upon my forehead and along my spine.
  At thy command eschewing pleasure's cup,
      With the hot grape I warm no more my wit;
      When on thy stool of penitence I sit
  I'm quite converted, for I can't get up.
  Ungrateful he who afterward would falter
  To make new sacrifices at thine altar!

Devil's Dictionarydefinition from:
The Devil's Dictionary
by Ambrose Bierce, 1911

Regular definition:
?k?ses n. & adj. --n. 1 the state or an instance of exceeding. 2 the amount by which one quantity or number exceeds another. 3 exceeding of a proper or permitted limit. 4 a the overstepping of the accepted limits of moderation, esp. intemperance in eating or drinking. b (in pl.) outrageous or immoderate behaviour. 5 an extreme or improper degree or extent (an excess of cruelty). 6 part of an insurance claim to be paid by the insured, esp. by prior agreement. --attrib.adj. usu. 1 that exceeds a limited or prescribed amount (excess weight). 2 required as extra payment (excess postage). °excess baggage (or luggage) that exceeding a weight allowance and liable to an extra charge. in (or to) excess exceeding the proper amount or degree. in excess of more than; exceeding. [ME f. OF exces f. L excessus (as EXCEED)]

Last updated: 9/3/2011 12:48:30