dwell

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dwell (up)on someone or something

to remain on the [important] subject of someone or something for a long time. (Upon is formal and less commonly used than on.) I can't dwell upon this subject anymore. There is no need to dwell on Sarah further.
See also: dwell, on

dwell (up)on something

to live on something, such as the planet Earth. (Upon is more formal than on.) This is the largest turtle that dwells upon the earth. Many creatures dwell on this earth.
See also: dwell, on

*in an ivory tower

Fig. in a place, such as a university, where one can be aloof from the realities of living. (Typ—ically: be ~; dwell ~; live ~; work ~.) If you didn't spend so much time in your ivory tower, you'd know what people really think! Many professors are said to live in ivory towers. They don't know what the real world is like.
See also: ivory, tower

not dwell on something

to not spend a lot of time thinking or talking about something I knew how important this test was but I didn't want to dwell on it. My mother's advice always was, "Don't dwell on it, do something about it!"
Usage notes: also used without not: She dwells on the past a little too much.
See also: dwell, not, on

dwell on

Also, dwell upon. Linger over; ponder, speak or write at length. For example, Let's not dwell on this topic too long; we have a lot to cover today. [c. 1500]
See also: dwell, on

dwell on

v.
To think or talk about something to an excessive degree: The teacher dwelled on the subject of tardiness for several minutes.
See also: dwell, on
References in classic literature ?
121-139) But after earth had covered this generation -- they are called pure spirits dwelling on the earth, and are kindly, delivering from harm, and guardians of mortal men; for they roam everywhere over the earth, clothed in mist and keep watch on judgements and cruel deeds, givers of wealth; for this royal right also they received; -- then they who dwell on Olympus made a second generation which was of silver and less noble by far.
But to the others father Zeus the son of Cronos gave a living and an abode apart from men, and made them dwell at the ends of earth.
And there is virgin Justice, the daughter of Zeus, who is honoured and reverenced among the gods who dwell on Olympus, and whenever anyone hurts her with lying slander, she sits beside her father, Zeus the son of Cronos, and tells him of men's wicked heart, until the people pay for the mad folly of their princes who, evilly minded, pervert judgement and give sentence crookedly.
At length the mantle was finished, and amid the gray threads shone golden ones, making it bright; and she sent it to the King, entreating him to wear it, for it would bring peace and love to dwell within his breast.
sooner would I dwell for ever in your darkest cell, than lose the love of those warm, trusting hearts.
But if you can find no pleasure here, go back to your own cold home, and dwell in solitude and darkness, where no ray of sunlight or of joy can enter.
Ah, that I might again dwell in that enchanted land
Amongst peoples of a strange language did I dwell, with stopped ears: so that the language of their trafficking might remain strange unto me, and their bargaining for power.
For this is OUR height and our home: too high and steep do we here dwell for all uncleanly ones and their thirst.
It was a matter of course that in drawing Indian character he should dwell on the better traits of the picture, rather than on the coarser and more revolting though more common points.