to follow suit


From The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48:

Follow \Fol"low\, v. t. [imp. & p. p. Followed; p. pr. & vb.
   n. Following.][OE. foluwen, folwen, folgen, AS. folgian,
   fylgean, fylgan; akin to D. volgen, OHG. folg[=e]n, G.
   folgen, Icel. fylgja, Sw. f["o]lja, Dan. f["o]lge, and perh.
   to E. folk.]
   1. To go or come after; to move behind in the same path or
      direction; hence, to go with (a leader, guide, etc.); to
      accompany; to attend.
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            It waves me forth again; I'll follow it. --Shak.
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   2. To endeavor to overtake; to go in pursuit of; to chase; to
      pursue; to prosecute.
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            I will harden the hearts of the Egyptians, and they
            shall follow them.                    --Ex. xiv. 17.
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   3. To accept as authority; to adopt the opinions of; to obey;
      to yield to; to take as a rule of action; as, to follow
      good advice.
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            Approve the best, and follow what I approve.
                                                  --Milton.
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            Follow peace with all men.            --Heb. xii.
                                                  14.
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            It is most agreeable to some men to follow their
            reason; and to others to follow their appetites.
                                                  --J. Edwards.
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   4. To copy after; to take as an example.
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            We had rather follow the perfections of them whom we
            like not, than in defects resemble them whom we
            love.                                 --Hooker.
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   5. To succeed in order of time, rank, or office.
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   6. To result from, as an effect from a cause, or an inference
      from a premise.
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   7. To watch, as a receding object; to keep the eyes fixed
      upon while in motion; to keep the mind upon while in
      progress, as a speech, musical performance, etc.; also, to
      keep up with; to understand the meaning, connection, or
      force of, as of a course of thought or argument.
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            He followed with his eyes the flitting shade.
                                                  --Dryden.
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   8. To walk in, as a road or course; to attend upon closely,
      as a profession or calling.
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            O, had I but followed the arts!       --Shak.
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            O Antony! I have followed thee to this. --Shak.
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   Follow board (Founding), a board on which the pattern and
      the flask lie while the sand is rammed into the flask.
      --Knight.

   To follow the hounds, to hunt with dogs.

   To follow suit (Card Playing), to play a card of the same
      suit as the leading card; hence, colloquially, to follow
      an example set.

   To follow up, to pursue indefatigably.

   Syn: Syn.- To pursue; chase; go after; attend; accompany;
        succeed; imitate; copy; embrace; maintain.

   Usage: - To Follow, Pursue. To follow (v.t.) denotes
          simply to go after; to pursue denotes to follow with
          earnestness, and with a view to attain some definite
          object; as, a hound pursues the deer. So a person
          follows a companion whom he wishes to overtake on a
          journey; the officers of justice pursue a felon who
          has escaped from prison.
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.

From The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48:

Suit \Suit\ (s[=u]t), n. [OE. suite, F. suite, OF. suite,
   sieute, fr. suivre to follow, OF. sivre; perhaps influenced
   by L. secta. See Sue to follow, and cf. Sect, Suite.]
   1. The act of following or pursuing, as game; pursuit. [Obs.]
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   2. The act of suing; the process by which one endeavors to
      gain an end or an object; an attempt to attain a certain
      result; pursuit; endeavor.
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            Thenceforth the suit of earthly conquest shone.
                                                  --Spenser.
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   3. The act of wooing in love; the solicitation of a woman in
      marriage; courtship.
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            Rebate your loves, each rival suit suspend,
            Till this funereal web my labors end. --Pope.
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   4. (Law) The attempt to gain an end by legal process; an
      action or process for the recovery of a right or claim;
      legal application to a court for justice; prosecution of
      right before any tribunal; as, a civil suit; a criminal
      suit; a suit in chancery.
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            I arrest thee at the suit of Count Orsino. --Shak.
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            In England the several suits, or remedial
            instruments of justice, are distinguished into three
            kinds -- actions personal, real, and mixed.
                                                  --Blackstone.
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   5. That which follows as a retinue; a company of attendants
      or followers; the assembly of persons who attend upon a
      prince, magistrate, or other person of distinction; --
      often written suite, and pronounced sw[=e]t.
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   6. Things that follow in a series or succession; the
      individual objects, collectively considered, which
      constitute a series, as of rooms, buildings, compositions,
      etc.; -- often written suite, and pronounced sw[=e]t.
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   7. A number of things used together, and generally necessary
      to be united in order to answer their purpose; a number of
      things ordinarily classed or used together; a set; as, a
      suit of curtains; a suit of armor; a suit of clothes; a
      three-piece business suit. "Two rogues in buckram suits."
      --Shak.
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   8. (Playing Cards) One of the four sets of cards which
      constitute a pack; -- each set consisting of thirteen
      cards bearing a particular emblem, as hearts, spades,
      clubs, or diamonds; also, the members of each such suit
      held by a player in certain games, such as bridge; as,
      hearts were her long suit.
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            To deal and shuffle, to divide and sort
            Her mingled suits and sequences.      --Cowper.
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   9. Regular order; succession. [Obs.]
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            Every five and thirty years the same kind and suit
            of weather comes again.               --Bacon.
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   10. Hence: (derived from def 7) Someone who dresses in a
       business suit, as contrasted with more informal attire;
       specifically, a person, such as business executive, or
       government official, who is apt to view a situation
       formalistically, bureaucratically, or according to formal
       procedural criteria; -- used derogatively for one who is
       inflexible, esp. when a more humanistic or imaginative
       approach would be appropriate.
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   Out of suits, having no correspondence. [Obs.] --Shak.

   Suit and service (Feudal Law), the duty of feudatories to
      attend the courts of their lords or superiors in time of
      peace, and in war to follow them and do military service;
      -- called also suit service. --Blackstone.

   Suit broker, one who made a trade of obtaining the suits of
      petitioners at court. [Obs.]

   Suit court (O. Eng. Law), the court in which tenants owe
      attendance to their lord.

   Suit covenant (O. Eng. Law), a covenant to sue at a certain
      court.

   Suit custom (Law), a service which is owed from time
      immemorial.

   Suit service. (Feudal Law) See Suit and service, above.
      

   To bring suit. (Law)
       (a) To bring secta, followers or witnesses, to prove the
           plaintiff's demand. [Obs.]
       (b) In modern usage, to institute an action.

   To follow suit.
       (a) (Card Playing) See under Follow, v. t.
       (b) To mimic the action of another person; to perform an
           action similar to what has preceded; as, when she
           walked in, John left the room and his wife followed
           suit.

   long suit
       (a) (Card Playing) the suit[8] of which a player has the
           largest number of cards in his hand; as, his long
           suit was clubs, but his partner insisted on making
           hearts trumps.. Hence: [fig.] that quality or
           capability which is a person's best asset; as, we
           could see from the mess in his room that neatness was
           not his long suit.

   strong suit same as long suit,
       (b) . "I think our strong suit is that we can score from
           both the perimeter and the post." --Bill Disbrow
           (basketball coach) 1998. "Rigid ideological
           consistency has never been a strong suit of the Whole
           Earth Catalogue." --Bruce Sterling (The Hacker
           Crackdown, 1994)
           [1913 Webster +PJC]
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