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half- +‎ embrace


half-embrace (plural half-embraces)

  1. A partial hug.
    • 1855, Herman Melville, Benito Cereno:
      “But throughout these calamities.“ huskily continued Don Benito. painfully turning in the half-embrace of his servant. “I have to thank those Negroes you see, who, though to your inexperienced eyes appearing unruly, have, indeed, conducted themselves with less restlessness than even their owner could have thought possible under such circumstances."
  2. An ambivalent acceptance or adoption.
    • 2012, Oliver Burkeman, The Antidote, Happiness for People Who Can't Stand Positive Thinking, →ISBN:
      This half-embrace of failure, as Coward suggests, is something the British like to think of as distinctly British.


half-embrace (third-person singular simple present half-embraces, present participle half-embracing, simple past and past participle half-embraced)

  1. To embrace or wrap around partially.
    • 1835, William Withering, An Arrangement of British Plants:
      Flowers destitute of ray; leaves pinnatised, toothed, half-embracing the stem.
  2. Adopt in an ambivalent or partial manner.
    • 2010, Benjamin Wiker, 10 Books Every Conservative Must Read: Plus Four Not to Miss and One Impostor, →ISBN:
      One solution, which his own England would later half-embrace, was socialism or collectivism, “in which the means of production” are “in the hands of the political officers of the community.