Definitions for: Observation

[n] the act of observing; taking a patient look
[n] the act of making and recording a measurement
[n] the act of noticing or paying attention; "he escaped the notice of the police"
[n] facts learned by observing; "he reported his observations to the mayor"
[n] a remark expressing careful consideration

Webster (1913) Definition: Ob`ser*va"tion, n. [L. observatio: cf.F.
1. The act or the faculty of observing or taking notice; the
act of seeing, or of fixing the mind upon, anything.

My observation, which very seldom lies. --Shak.

2. The result of an act, or of acts, of observing; view;
reflection; conclusion; judgment.

In matters of human prudence, we shall find the
greatest advantage in making wise observations on
our conduct. --I. Watts.

3. Hence: An expression of an opinion or judgment upon what
one has observed; a remark. ``That's a foolish
observation.'' --Shak.

To observations which ourselves we make We grow more
partial for the observer's sake. --Pope.

4. Performance of what is prescribed; adherence in practice;
observance. [Obs.]

We are to procure dispensation or leave to omit the
observation of it in such circumstances. --Jer.

5. (Science)
(a) The act of recognizing and noting some fact or
occurrence in nature, as an aurora, a corona, or the
structure of an animal.
(b) Specifically, the act of measuring, with suitable
instruments, some magnitude, as the time of an
occultation, with a clock; the right ascension of a
star, with a transit instrument and clock; the sun's
altitude, or the distance of the moon from a star,
with a sextant; the temperature, with a thermometer,
(c) The information so acquired.

Note: When a phenomenon is scrutinized as it occurs in
nature, the act is termed an observation. When the
conditions under which the phenomenon occurs are
artificial, or arranged beforehand by the observer, the
process is called an experiment. Experiment includes

To take an observation (Naut.), to ascertain the altitude
of a heavenly body, with a view to fixing a vessel's
position at sea.

Syn: Observance; notice; attention; remark; comment; note.
See Observance.

Synonyms: notice, observance, observance, reflection, reflexion, watching

See Also: attending, attention, comment, fact, look, looking, looking at, measure, measurement, measuring, mensuration, mind, monitoring, Parkinson's law, radio observation, remark, remark, scientific fact, sighting, stargazing

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