By

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King James Dictionary [1]

BY, prep.

1. Near close as, sit by me that house stands by a river.

L. pressus.

2. Near, in motion as, to move, go or pass by a church. But it seems, in other phrases,or with a verb in the past time, to signify past, gone beyond. "The procession is gone by " "the hour is gone by " "John went by." We now use past as an equivalent word. The procession is gone past. Gone by is in strictness tautology, as now used but I apprehend by signifies primarily near. 3. Through, or with, denoting the agent, means, instrument or cause as, "a city is destroyed by fire " "profit is made by commerce " "to take by force." This use answers to that of the Latin per, through, denoting a passing, acting, agency, or instrumentality. 4. "Day by day " "year by year " "article by article." In these phrases, by denotes passing from one to another, or each particular separately taken. 5. "By the space of seven years." In this phrase, by denotes through, passing or continuing, during. 6. "By this time, the sun had risen." The word here seems to denote, at, present or come to. 7. According to as, "this appears by his own account " "these are good rules to live by." 8. On as, "to pass by land or water " "great battles by sea and land." In the latter phrase, at or on might be substituted for by. 9. It is placed before words denoting quantity, measure or proportion as, to sell by the pound to work by the rod or perch this line is longer by a tenth. 10. It is used to represent the means or instrument of swearing, or affirming as, to swear by heaven, or by earth to affirm by all that is sacred. 11. In the phrase, "he has a cask of wine by him," by denotes nearness or presence. 12. "To sit by one's self," is to sit alone, or without company. 13. "To be present by attorney." In this phrase, by denotes means or instrument through or in the presence of a substitute. 14. In the phrase, "North by West," the sense seems to be north passing to the west, inclining or going westward, or near west.

As an adverb, by denotes also nearness, or presence as, there was no person by, at the time. But some noun is understood. So in the phrase, "to pass or go by," there is a noun understood.

By and by is a phrase denoting nearness in time in a short time after presently soon.

When persecution ariseth, because of the word, by and by, he is offended. Math 13

By the by signifies, as we proceed or pass.

To stand by, is to stand near, or to support.

By in lullaby, and in the nursery, a word used in lulling infants to sleep, is evidently allied to words found in many languages, signifying to rest, or be quiet, or to appease that is, to press, to stop. L.paco.

By or bye, in by-law.

In the common phrase, good-bye, bye signifies passing, going. The phrase signifies, a good going, a prosperous passage, and it is precisely equivalent to farewell.

By is used in many compound words, in most of which we observe the sense of nearness, closeness, or a withdrawing or seclusion.

Webster's Dictionary [2]

(1): (adv.) Aside; as, to lay by; to put by.

(2): (adv.) Near; in the neighborhood; present; as, there was no person by at the time.

(3): (adv.) Passing near; going past; past; beyond; as, the procession has gone by; a bird flew by.

(4): (pref.) In the neighborhood of; near or next to; not far from; close to; along with; as, come and sit by me.

(5): (pref.) On; along; in traversing. Compare 5.

(6): (pref.) Near to, while passing; hence, from one to the other side of; past; as, to go by a church.

(7): (pref.) Used in specifying adjacent dimensions; as, a cabin twenty feet by forty.

(8): (pref.) Against.

(9): (pref.) With, as means, way, process, etc.; through means of; with aid of; through; through the act or agency of; as, a city is destroyed by fire; profit is made by commerce; to take by force.

(10): (a.) Out of the common path; aside; - used in composition, giving the meaning of something aside, secondary, or incidental, or collateral matter, a thing private or avoiding notice; as, by-line, by-place, by-play, by-street. It was formerly more freely used in composition than it is now; as, by-business, by-concernment, by-design, by-interest, etc.

Hastings' Dictionary of the Bible [3]

BY . In the Authorized Version of is generally used for the agent and by for the instrument. Thus   Matthew 1:22 ‘that it might be fulfilled which was spoken of (RV [Note: Revised Version.] ‘by’) the Lord by (RV [Note: Revised Version.] ‘through’) the prophet.’

In  1 Corinthians 4:4 ‘I know nothing by myself,’ by means contrary to, against , as in Hamilton’s Catechism , 1559 (the Tabil), ‘Jugis quhilk fur lufe of rewardis dols ony thing by the ordour of justice’; also fol. vii., ‘curslt ar thai quhilk gaogis by ye commondis of God.’

Vine's Expository Dictionary of NT Words [4]

 Mark 6:25 Matthew 13:21 Luke 17:7 21:9

Easton's Bible Dictionary [5]

 1 Corinthians 4:4

International Standard Bible Encyclopedia [6]

In the sense of "against" which survives only in dialectal English (compare Wright, Dialect Dict ., I, 470, for examples) is the King James Version rendering of the dative ἐμαυτῷ , emautō̇ of  1 Corinthians 4:4 (the American Standard Revised Version renders this "against"). In classical Greek the same idiom sunoı́da with dative = "be conscious" or "be cognizant of" a thing.

References