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  • Tabitha observes
    Tabitha observes
  • WordNet 3.6
    • n observation the act of observing; taking a patient look
    • n observation the act of making and recording a measurement
    • n observation the act of noticing or paying attention "he escaped the notice of the police"
    • n observation facts learned by observing "he reported his observations to the mayor"
    • n observation a remark expressing careful consideration
    • ***

Additional illustrations & photos:

An observation beehive An observation beehive

Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
  • Interesting fact: Sharks are capable of going at least 6 weeks without eating; the record observed in an aquarium is 15 months by a species of shark known as the swell sharks)
    • Observation An expression of an opinion or judgment upon what one has observed; a remark. "That's a foolish observation .""To observations which ourselves we make
      We grow more partial for the observer's sake."
    • Observation Performance of what is prescribed; adherence in practice; observance. "We are to procure dispensation or leave to omit the observation of it in such circumstances."
    • Observation (Science) 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, etc.
    • Observation (Science) The act of recognizing and noting some fact or occurrence in nature, as an aurora, a corona, or the structure of an animal.
    • Observation 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."
    • Observation (Science) The information so acquired; as, to record one's observations carefully.
    • Observation 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."
    • ***
Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
  • Interesting fact: Sharks are capable of surviving on average six weeks without eating. The record observed in an aquarium is fifteen months by a species of shark known as the "swell shark."
    • n observation The act or fact of observing, and noting or fixing in the mind; a seeing and noting; notice: as, a fact that does not come under one's observation.
    • n observation The habit or power of observing and noting: as, a man of great observation.
    • n observation An act of scientific observing; an accurate remarking (often with measurement) of a fact directly presented to the senses, together with the conditions under which it is presented: as, a meridian observation, made by a navigator, in which he measures the sun's altitude when on the meridian for the purpose of calculating the latitude; the meteorological observations made by the Signal Service Bureau. In those sciences which describe and explain provinces of the universe as it exists, such as astronomy and systematic biology, observations are, for the most part, made under circumstances or conditions which may be selected, but cannot be produced at will. But in those sciences which analyze the behavior of substances under various conditions it is customary first to place the object to be examined under artificially produced conditions, and then to make an observation upon it. This whole performance, of which the observation is a part, is called an experiment. Formerly sciences were divided into sciences of experiment and sciences of observation, meaning observation without experiment. But now experiments are made in all sciences. It is only occasionally that the word observation has been used to imply the absence of experimentation.
    • n observation The result of such a scientific practice; the information gained by observing: as, to tabulate observations.
    • n observation Knowledge; experience.
    • n observation A remark, especially a remark based or professing to be based on what has been observed; an opinion expressed.
    • n observation The fact of being seen or noticed; notice; remark: as, to escape observation; anxious to avoid observation.
    • n observation Observance; careful attention to rule, custom, or precept, and performance of whatever is prescribed or required.
    • n observation A rite; a ceremony; an observance.
    • n observation Synonyms Observance, Observation. See observance.
    • n observation Experiment, etc. See experience.
    • n observation Note, Comment, etc. (see remark, n.), annotation.
    • ***
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
  • Interesting fact: To an observer standing on Pluto, the sun would appear no brighter than Venus appears in our evening sky.
    • n Observation act of observing: habit of seeing and noting: attention: the act of recognising and noting phenomena as they occur in nature, as distinguished from experiment: that which is observed: a remark: performance: the fact of being observed
    • ***


  • Jonathan Swift
    “Observation is an old man's memory.”
  • Georg C. Lichtenberg
    “We cannot remember too often that when we observe nature, and especially the ordering of nature, it is always ourselves alone we are observing.”
  • Yogi Berra
    “You can see a lot by observing.”
  • Yogi Berra
    “You can observe a lot by just watching.”
  • Alexander Pope
    “One who is too wise an observer of the business of others, like one who is too curious in observing the labor of bees, will often be stung for his curiosity.”
  • Virginia Woolf
    “On the outskirts of every agony sits some observant fellow who points.”


Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
L. observatio,: cf. F. observation,
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
Fr.,—L. observāre, -ātumob, before, servāre, to keep.


In literature:

First, a few dates as points of observation.
"The Anti-Slavery Examiner, Omnibus" by American Anti-Slavery Society
He could not help observing an uncommon dejection and anxiety in my countenance, and affectionately enquired into the reason.
"Caleb Williams" by William Godwin
I had very soon an Opportunity of observing these quick Turns and Changes in her Constitution.
"The Spectator, Volumes 1, 2 and 3" by Joseph Addison and Richard Steele
The following observations on its structure by Dr. Horsley, Bishop of Rochester, are ingenious and important.
"Robert Kerr's General History and Collection of Voyages and Travels, Volume 18" by William Stevenson
Enthusiastic lovers occasionally observe the same precaution.
"Overland through Asia; Pictures of Siberian, Chinese, and Tartar Life" by Thomas Wallace Knox
A Table of the Variation of the Compass as observed on board of the Swallow.
"A General History and Collection of Voyages and Travels, Vol. 12" by Robert Kerr
See Harmer's Observations on Scripture, 4th ed.
"A General History and Collection of Voyages and Travels, Vol. 13" by Robert Kerr
Observations on the Country Entertainments at Poulaho's House.
"A General History and Collection of Voyages and Travels, Vol. 15 (of 18)" by Robert Kerr
At good observation points observe and complete the sketch as far as possible.
"Military Instructors Manual" by James P. Cole and Oliver Schoonmaker
Every movement in Judea was observed and reported at the metropolis.
"Sermons on Various Important Subjects" by Andrew Lee
Here the anatomist observes what the painter had not observed; and he passes by what the shoemaker had remarked.
"The Works of the Right Honourable Edmund Burke, Vol. I. (of 12)" by Edmund Burke
I observed Pandanus to be common, (one Sterculia was yesterday observed).
"Journals of Travels in Assam, Burma, Bhootan, Afghanistan and TheNeighbouring Countries" by William Griffith
During our stay at Spithead, the rate of the timepiece was several times examined by Mr. Bailey's observations at the Portsmouth observatory.
"A Voyage to the South Sea" by William Bligh
Astronomical Tables and Observations.
"A General History and Collection of Voyages and Travels, Volume 17" by Robert Kerr
And observing many black hairs in the tail, Kadru put Vinata, who was deeply dejected, into slavery.
"The Mahabharata of Krishna-Dwaipayana Vyasa, Volume 1"
Observations that have to do with the efficient performance of their calling are extended and rendered precise.
"How We Think" by John Dewey
To the scores of other people who assisted in making these observations I extend my hearty thanks.
"A Quantitative Study of the Nocturnal Migration of Birds." by George H. Lowery.
In general they leave us in April and May, though they have been observed as late as the beginning of June.
"British Birds in their Haunts" by Rev. C. A. Johns
Let us adhere faithfully to the illustrative example of slips of the tongue and let us examine a larger number of such observations.
"A General Introduction to Psychoanalysis" by Sigmund Freud
Observes no unpleasant symptoms.
"New, Old, and Forgotten Remedies: Papers by Many Writers" by Various

In poetry:

Observe the lily, and the rose,
To toil and spin they ne'er were known,
Yet God indulges them with clothes,
More gay, than monarch e'er put on.
"Concerning The Divine Providence" by Rees Prichard
Search then the Scripture, night and day,
And read it with observing eyes,
Its dictates punctually obey, —
So shalt thou prove extremely wise.
"Advice To Hear, And To Read, The Word Of God" by Rees Prichard
Take comfort, rear thy downcast eyes,
Above this earthly ball aspire,
Observe the heavens, Jesus' prize!
The heav'ns, of which he made thee heir!
"A Comfortable Conference Between A Pious Sick Man And His Soul, Against The Fear Of Death" by Rees Prichard
But though the world observes thee not,
In one fond heart thou‘rt treasured;
And bright indeed must be the lot,
That shares a love unmeasured.
"Aster" by S C Edgarton
Thou, stranger, that shalt come this way.
No fraud upon the dead commit —
Observe the swelling turf, and say
They do not lie, but here they sit.
"The Indian Burying Ground" by Philip Morin Freneau
Let this holy, great bequest reward
Brotherly good-will and kind regard:
SOLEMN DUTY'S DAILY observation.--
More than this, it needs no revelation.
"Book Of the Parsees - The Bequest Of The Ancient Persian Faith" by Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

In news:

Carsen Yela, 7, of Vancouver, kisses her father, Vancouver firefighter Joe Yela, during a Sept 11, 2010 flag ceremony to observe the ninth anniversary of Sept 11, 2001.
Cedar Plains observes 175th anniversary.
Cedar Plains Christian Church in the Massey community observed its 175th anniversary with special activities Sun.
Kiefer Sutherland Vacates Village Townhouse for $17.5 M. Next in Observer.
A new way of studying supernovae has been found by observing both remnants and light echoes.
AUSTIN — The head of an international group of voting observers threatened with arrest in Texas says the tension is a misunderstanding and that the state's Election Day laws will be followed.
A Weekly Column of Trivia and Observations.
Both the urgency and boredom of the teenage years are captured in this finely observed documentary by Jason Tippet and Elizabeth Mims.
This weekend begins the observation of the 50th anniversary of the Cuban Missile Crisis.
Museum director Theodore Brunson unveils a tribute at the Jersey City Library's Black History Museum to Cordelia Greene Johnson, who was an official observer at the United Nations, in 1987.
Jamaica Observer, Kingston Friday, December 18, 2009.
Before joining our Access Vikings team, Dan Wiederer covered Atlantic Coast Conference basketball for the Fayetteville (N. C.) Observer and was named North Carolina's top sports columnist in 2010.
Ramadan in Cairo is indeed a serious religious observance, with Muslims purifying themselves through self-restraint, good deeds and prayer during the day.
Stopping by the Big Apple Pizza & Pasta Italian Restaurant in Ft. Sunday, President Obama got an unexpected lift from Scott Van Duzer, whom the president observed as the "biggest pizza parlor owner I've ever seen.".
Britain's Queen Elizabeth will observe her diamond jubilee next month.

In science:

From Postulate III (Born statistical formula), apparatus A(x) precisely measures an observable A if and only if A(x) satisfies the BSF for observable A on every input state, and moreover for every observable A of S there is at least one apparatus that precisely measures A.
Uncertainty Relations for Noise and Disturbance in Generalized Quantum Measurements
We suppose that in order to measure an observable A in a given state, the observer actually make a precise measurement of another observable X, the meter observable, in the same state.
Uncertainty Relations for Noise and Disturbance in Generalized Quantum Measurements
Four XMM-Newton observations were made of the core of M31; data from the three EPIC detectors in each observation were analysed for variation between observations and variability within observations.
Tracing a Z-track in the M31 X-ray Binary RX J0042.6+4115
The resulting HID appears to show fragments of the Z-pattern characteristic of the Cygnus X-2 like Z-sources (Hasinger & van der Klis 1989); it appears that observation 1 is on the NB, observation 2 is near the HB/NB apex, observation 3 is on the FB, and observation 4 is on the HB.
Tracing a Z-track in the M31 X-ray Binary RX J0042.6+4115
The figure shows that if the observed gas mass density equals the observe quantity (Ωd/Ωobs = 1) and the observed gas has metallicity hZ i = 1/3 solar, it would imply a factor of 2 correction to the observed mean metallicity.
Chemical Abundances in the Damped Lya Systems
In the rest frame of the central engine/observer, the shell emits a first photon towards the observer at the time ˆt1 at the location A (the radius r), and emits a second photon towards the observer at time ˆt2 at the location B (the radius r + dr), as recorded by clocks precisely adjusted in this inertia frame.
Gamma-Ray Bursts: Progress, Problems & Prospects
Concern: do the predicted radial distributions of halo substructures agree with observations? Observed satellites may be located at smaller radii than the subhalos found in simulations, but the observational and simulation data sets are still small.
Summary talk: How serious are the problems faced by CDM: cusps, thin disks, and halo substructure
The first four columns of Table 1 gives the serial number of the observation, observation IDs, observation start time in MJD and exposure times in kiloseconds.
Evolution of Spectral States of Aql X-1 during the 2000 Outburst
Note. — Table of observations of GRB 020410, showing the time of each observation, the observed magnitude (or limiting magnitude).
GRB 020410: A Gamma-Ray Burst Afterglow Discovered by its Supernova Light
Quantum theory is up to now the only scientific theory that requires the observer to take into consideration the usually neglected influence of the method of observation on the result of observation.
Quantum Game Theory in Finance
So each observable has a value – an expectation value – regardless of whether the operator that represents the observable commutes or does not commute with operators of other observables.
Quantum Computation and Quantum Information: Are They Related to Quantum Paradoxology?
In a systematic study of the X-ray and radio simultaneous observations of several M-type flare stars, Smith et al. (2005) also observed several cases of a Neupert effects, although they reported events where no radio counterparts were observed to X-ray flares, and vice-versa.
X-rays of Stellar Coronae with Chandra and XMM-Newton: Flares and Elemental Composition in Stellar Atmospheres (Invited review)
In a Schwarzschild geometry a local observer, due to gravitational time dilation, sees a frequency higher by (1 − 2(rg /r))−1/2 ; in the general case, the locally observed frequency also depends on the observer’s angular motion.
A review of rapid X-ray variability in X-ray binaries
While on one hand, the observations have constrained theoretical scenarios and models more precisely, some of these observations have thrown up new challenges to theoretical understanding and others that have brought issues from the realm of theoretical speculation to observational verification.
Summary of ICGC04 Cosmology Workshop
In Fig. 4 we present, for all standards observed, the difference between observed and synthetic magnitudes computed with the standard passbands, as a function of observed color.
An Atlas of Spectrophotometric Landolt Standard Stars