seminality (plural seminalities)

  1. The quality or state of being seminal.
    • 1661, George Rust, A Letter of Resolution Concerning Origen, London: C.L., (Facsimile Text Society, Columbia University Press, 1933), p. 84,[1]
      And unless [God] purposely put a stop to the course of Nature, the great principle of vegetative life will necessarily shape the matter, when duely modified, into all kinde of trees, plants, herbs and flowers: for the inferiour spirit of the world acts not by choice, but fatally; and being essentially stored with an universal Seminality, will not fail to bring her treasure into view when invited by congruous and sequacious dispositions of matter.
    • 1716, Thomas Browne, Christian Morals, 2nd edition edited by Samuel Johnson, London: J. Payne, 1756, Part I, p. 43,[2]
      For perfection is not, like light, center’d in any one body; but, like the dispersed seminalities of vegetables at the creation, scattered through the whole mass of the earth, no place producing all, and almost all some.
    • 1859, Richard Francis Burton, “The Lake Regions of Central Equatorial Africa, with Notices of the Lunar Mountains and the Sources of the White Nile; Being the Results of an Expedition Undertaken Under the Patronage of Her Majesty’s Government and the Royal Geographical Society of London, in the Years 1857-1859,”, Journal of the Royal Geographical Society, Volume 29, p. 316,[3]
      The cold produced by rarefied atmosphere in elevated lands materially modifies the complexion; the mountaineers, for instance, are of an “Indian red” colour, with a warm coppery tinge, which gives “salt”—that is to say, an appearance of life and health—to the skin. Again, much allowance must be made for the seminality of the various races.
    • 1980, Henry L. Bretton, The Power of Money: A Political-Economic Analysis with Special Emphasis on the American Political System, Albany: State University of New York Press, Chapter 13, p. 311,[4]
      Underlying the theory of political democracy are two additional assumptions, one might say doctrines, both sustaining the thesis of the centrality, or seminality, of political behavior, both untenable if tested against the realities of money in politics.

Part or all of this entry has been imported from the 1913 edition of Webster’s Dictionary, which is now free of copyright and hence in the public domain. The imported definitions may be significantly out of date, and any more recent senses may be completely missing.