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or afeared

[uh-feerd] /əˈfɪərd/
adjective, British and Midland and Southern U.S.
Origin of afeard
before 1000; Middle English afered, Old English āfǣred frightened (past participle of āfǣran). See a-3, fear, -ed2 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for afeared
Historical Examples
  • "I'm afeared the little lady will soil her pretty frock," he remarked, with another pull at his forelock.

    Reels and Spindles Evelyn Raymond
  • I'm afeared of what d'you call 'ems, some tomfoolery, you know.

    The Power of Darkness Leo Tolstoy
  • "Sammy needn't be afeared," continued Pete, seeing the look on the girl's face.

    The Shepherd of the Hills Harold Bell Wright
  • "The least said the soonest mended about that one, I'm afeared," said the dame.

    The Vicar of Bullhampton Anthony Trollope
  • I'm afeared I was born for a hard fate, an' that the day of my doom isn't far from me.

  • She would put a horse at a jump, though she was afeared of it.

    The Wind Bloweth Brian Oswald Donn-Byrne
  • There's a big tear in my shoulder, an' I'm afeared I've made my last cruise.

    Frank Merriwell Down South Burt L. Standish
  • You're afeared to go to law—Levi West—you try th' law—and see how ye like it.

  • We're afeared they'll get all the gold in the Klondike country if we don't hurry.

    Klondike Nuggets E. S. Ellis
  • Well, all I can say is, I never seen you afeared to go to say before.

British Dictionary definitions for afeared


(postpositive) an archaic or dialect word for afraid
Word Origin
Old English āfǣred, from afǣran to frighten, from fǣran to fear
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for afeared

Old English afæred, past participle of now-obsolete afear (Old English afæran) "to terrify," from a- (1) + root of fear. Used frequently by Shakespeare, but supplanted in literary English after 1700 by afraid (q.v.). It still survives in popular and colloquial speech.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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