This is page 38 of An Icelandic-English Dictionary by Cleasby/Vigfusson (1874)

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38 Á

hrinda skipum á vatn, to float the ships down into the water, Fms. i. 58; reka austr á haf, to drift eastwards on the sea, x. 145; ríða ofan á, to ride down or over, Nj. 82. IV. in some cases the acc. is used where the dat. would be used, esp. with verbs denoting to see or hear, in such phrases as, þeir sá boða mikinn inn á fjörðinn, they saw great breakers away up in the bight of the firth, the acc. being due perhaps to a motion or direction of the eye or ear towards the object, Nj. 124; sá þeir fólkit á land, they saw the people in the direction of land, Fas. ii. 517: in phrases denoting to be placed, to sit, to be seated, the seat or bench is freq. in the acc. where the dat. would now be used; konungr var þar á land upp, the king was then up the country, the spectator or narrator is conceived as looking from the shore or sea-side, Nj. 46; sitja á miðjan bekk, to be seated on the middle bench, 50; skyldi konungs sæti vera á þann bekk ... annat öndvegi var á hinn úæðra pall; hann setti konungs hásæti á miðjan þverpall, Fms. vi. 439, 440, cp. Fagrsk. l.c., Sturl. iii. 182; eru víða fjallbygðir upp á mörkina, in the mark or forest, Eg. 58; var þar mörk mikil á land upp, 229; mannsafnaðr er á land upp (viewed from the sea), Ld. 76; stóll var settr á mótið, Fas. i. 58; beiða fars á skip, to beg a passage, Grág. i. 90. V. denoting parts of the body; bíta e-n á barka, to bite one in the throat, Ísl. ii. 447; skera á háls, to cut the throat of any one, Nj. 156; brjóta e-n á háls, to break any one's neck; brjóta e-n á bak, to break any one's back, Fms. vii. 119; kalinn á kné, frozen to the knees with cold, Hm. 3. VI. denoting round; láta reipi á háls hesti, round his horse's neck, 623. 33; leggja söðul á hest, Nj. 83; and ellipt., leggja á, to saddle; breiða feld á hofuð sér, to wrap a cloak over his head, 164; reyta á sik mosa, to gather moss to cover oneself with, 267; spenna hring á hönd, á fingr, Eg. 300. VII. denoting a burden; stela mat á tvá hesta, hey á fimtán hesta, i.e. a two, a fifteen horse load, Nj. 74: metaph., kjósa feigð á menn, to choose death upon them, i.e. doom them to death, Edda 22.

B. TEMP. I. of a period of time, at, to; á morgun, to-morrow (í morgun now means the past morning, the morning of to-day), Ísl. ii. 333. II. if connected with the word day, 'á' is now used before a fixed or marked day, a day of the week, a feast day, or the like; á Laugardag, á Sunnudag ..., on Saturday, Sunday, the Old Engl. a-Sunday, a-Monday, etc.; á Jóladaginn, Páskadaginn, on Yule and Easter-day; but in old writers more often used ellipt. Sunnudaginn, Jóladaginn ..., by dropping the prep. 'á,' Fms. viii. 397, Grág. i. 18. III. connected with 'dagr' with the definite article suffixed, 'á' denotes a fixed, recurring period or season, in; á daginn, during the day-time, every day in turn, Grett. 91 A. IV. connected with 'evening, morning, the seasons,' with the article; á kveldit, every evening, Ld. 14; á sumarit, every summer, Vd. 128, where the new Ed. Fs. 51 reads sumrum; á haust, every autumn, Eg. 741 (perh. a misprint instead of á haustin or á haustum); á vetrinn, in the winter time, 710; á várit, every spring, Gþl. 347; the sing., however, is very rare in such cases, the old as well as mod. usage prefers the plur.; á nætrnar, by night, Nj. 210; á várin, Eg. 710; á sumrin, haustin, á morgnana, in the morning (á morgin, sing., means to-morrow); á kveldin, in the evening, only 'dagr' is used in sing., v. above (á daginn, not á dagana); but elliptically and by dropping the article, Icelanders say, kveld og morgna, nótt og dag, vetr sumar vor og haust, in the same sense as those above mentioned. V. denoting duration, the article is dropped in the negative phrase, aldri á sinn dag, never during one's life; aldri á mína daga, never in my life, Bjarn. 8, where a possess. pron. is put between noun and prep., but this phrase is very rare. Such phrases as, á þann dag, that day, and á þenna dag, Stj. 12, 655 xxx. 2. 20, are unclassical. VI. á dag without article can only be used in a distributive sense, e.g. tvisvar á dag, twice a-day; this use is at present freq. in Icel., yet instances from old writers are not on record. VII. denoting a movement onward in time, such as, liðið á nótt, dag, kveld, morgun, sumar, vetr, vár, haust (or nóttina, daginn ...), jól, páska, föstu, or the like, far on in the night, day ..., Edda 33; er á leið vetrinn, when the winter was well on, as the winter wore on, Nj. 126; cp. áliðinn: also in the phrase, hniginn á inn efra aldr, well stricken in years, Ld. 68.

C. Metaph. and in various relations: I. somewhat metaphorically, denoting an act only (not the place); fara á fund, á vit e-s, to call for one, Eg. 140; koma á ræðu við e-n, to come to a parley with, to speak, 173; ganga á tal, Nj. 103; skora á hólm, to challenge to a duel on an island; koma á grið, to enter into a service, to be domiciled, Grág. i. 151; fara á veiðar, to go a-hunting, Fms. i. 8. β. generally denoting on, upon, in, to; bjóða vöxtu á féit, to offer interest on the money, Grág. i. 198; ganga á berhögg, to come to blows, v. berhögg; fá á e-n, to make an impression upon one, Nj. 79; ganga á vápn e-s, to throw oneself on an enemy's weapon, meet him face to face, Rd. 310; ganga á lagið, to press on up the spear-shaft after it has passed through one so as to get near one's foe, i.e. to avail oneself of the last chance; bera fé á e-n, to bribe, Nj. 62; bera öl á e-n, to make drunk, Fas. i. 13; snúinn á e-t, inclined to, Fms. x. 142; sammælast á e-t, to agree upon, Nj. 86; sættast, verða sáttr á e-t, in the same sense, to come to an agreement, settlement, or atonement, 78, Edda 15, Eb. 288, Ld. 50, Fms. i. 279; ganga á mála, to serve for pay as a soldier, Nj. 121; ganga á vald e-s, to put oneself in his power, 267; ganga á sætt, to break an agreement; vega á veittar trygðir, to break truce, Grág. ii. 169. II. denoting in regard to, in respect to: 1. of colour, complexion, the hue of the hair, or the like; hvítr, jarpr, dökkr ... á hár, having white, brown, or dark ... hair, Ísl. ii. 190, Nj. 39; svartr á brún ok brá, dark of brow and eyebrow; dökkr á hörund, id., etc. 2. denoting skill, dexterity; hagr á tré, a good carpenter; hagr á járn, málm, smíðar ..., an expert worker in iron, metals ..., Eg. 4; fimr á boga, good at the bow: also used of mastership in science or arts, meistari á hörpuslátt, a master in striking the harp, Fas. iii. 220; fræðimaðr á kvæði, knowing many poems by heart, Fms. vi. 391; fræðimaðr á landnámssögur ok forna fræði, a learned scholar in histories and antiquities (of Are Frode), Ísl. ii. 189; mikill á íþrótt, skilful in an art, Edda (pref.) 148; but dat. in the phrase, kunna (vel) á skíðum, to be a cunning skater, Fms. i. 9, vii. 120. 3. denoting dimensions; á hæð, lengd, breidd, dýpt ..., in the heighth, length, breadth, depth ..., Eg. 277; á hvern veg, on each side, Edda 41 (square miles); á annan veg, on the one side, Grág. i. 89. β. the phrase, á sik, in regard to oneself, vel (illa) á sik kominn, of a fine (ugly) appearance, Ld. 100, Fas. iii. 74. III. denoting instrumentality; bjargast á sínar hendr, to live on the work of one's own hands, (á sínar spýtur is a mod. phrase in the same sense); (vega) á skálir, pundara, to weigh in scales, Grág. ii. 370; at hann hefði tvá pundara, ok hefði á hinn meira keypt en á hinn minna selt, of a man using two scales, a big one for buying and a little one for selling, Sturl. i. 91; á sinn kostnað, at one's own expense; nefna e-n á nafn, by name, Grág. i. 17, etc. The Icel. also say, spinna á rokk, snældu, to spin on or with a rock or distaff; mala á kvern, to grind in a 'querne,' where Edda 73 uses dat.; esp. of musical instruments, syngja, leika á hljóðfæri, hörpu, gígju ...; in the old usage, leika hörpu ..., Stj. 458. IV. denoting the manner or way of doing: 1. á þessa lund, in this wise, Grág. ii. 22; á marga vega, á alla, ymsa vega, in many, all, respects, Fms. i. 114; á sitt hóf, in its turn, respectively, Ld. 136, where the context shews that the expression answers to the Lat. mutatis mutandis; á Þýðersku, after German fashion, Sks. 288. 2. esp. of language; mæla, rita á e-a tungu, to speak, write in a tongue; á Írsku, in Irish, Ld. 76; Norrænu, in Norse, Eb. 330, Vm. 35; a Danska tungu, in Danish, i.e. Scandinavian, Norse, or Icelandic, Grág. i. 18; á Vára tungu, i.e. in Icelandic, 181; rita á Norræna tungu, to write in Norse, Hkr. (pref.), Bs. i. 59 :-- at present, dat. is sometimes used. 3. in some phrases the acc. is used instead of the dat.; hann sýndi á sik mikit gaman, Fms. x. 329; hann lét ekki á sik finna, he shewed no sign of motion, Nj. 111; skaltú önga fáleika á þik gera (Cod. Kalf.), 14. V. used in a distributive sense; skal mörk kaupa gæzlu á kú, eðr oxa fim vetra gamlan, a mark for every cow, Grág. i. 147; alin á hvert hross, 442; á mann, per man (now freq.): cp. also á dag above, lit. B. VI. connected with nouns, 1. prepositional; á hendr (with dat.), against; á hæla, at heel, close behind; á bak, at back, i.e. past, after; á vit (with gen.), towards. 2. adverbially; á braut, away, abroad; á víxl, in turns; á mis, amiss; á víð ok dreif, a-wide and a-drift, i.e. dispersedly. 3. used almost redundantly before the following prep.; á eptir, after, behind; á undan, in front of; á meðal, á milli, among; á mót, against; á við, about, alike; á frá (cp. Swed. ifrån), from (rare); á fyrir = fyrir, Haustl. 1; á hjá, beside (rare); á fram, a-head, forwards; á samt, together; ávalt = of allt, always: following a prep., upp á, upon; niðr á, down upon; ofan á, eptir á, post eventum, (temp.) á eptir is loc., id., etc. VII. connected with many transitive verbs, answering to the Lat. ad- or in-, in composition, in many cases periphrastically for an objective case. The prep. generally follows after the verb, instead of being prefixed to it as in Lat., and answers to the Engl. on, to; heita kalla, hrópa á, to call on; heyra, hlusta, hlyða á, to hearken to, listen to; hyggja, hugsa á, to think on; minna á, to remind; sjá, líta, horfa, stara, mæna, glápa, koma auga ... á, to look on; girnast á, to wish for; trúa á, to believe on; skora á, to call on any one to come out, challenge; kæra á, to accuse; heilsa á, to greet; herja, ganga, ríða, hlaupa, ráða ... á, to fall on, attack, cp. ágangr, áreið, áhlaup; ljúga á, to tell lies of, to slander; telja á, to carp at; ausa, tala, hella, kasta, verpa ... á, to pour, throw on; ríða, bera, dreifa á, to sprinkle on; vanta, skorta á, to fall short of; ala á, to plead, beg; leggja á, to throw a spell on, lay a saddle on; hætta á, to venture on; gizka á, to guess at; kveða á, to fix on, etc.: in a reciprocal sense, haldast á, of mutual strife; sendast á, to exchange presents; skrifast á, to correspond (mod.); kallast á, to shout mutually; standast á, to coincide, so as to be just opposite one another, etc.

á, interj. denoting wonder, doubt, or the like, eh.

Á, f. [Lat. aqua; Goth. ahva; Hel. aha; A. S. eâ; O. H. G. aha, owa; cp. Germ. ach and aue; Fr. eau, eaux; Engl. Ax-, Ex-, etc., in names of places; Swed.-Dan. å; the Scandinavians absorb the hu, so that only a single vowel or diphthong remains of the whole word] :-- a river. The old form in nom. dat. acc. sing, is &aolig;, v. the introduction to A, page 1,