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2017 Word of the Year

oars

[awrz, ohrz] /ɔrz, oʊrz/
interjection, Nautical.
1.
(used as a command to the crew of a scull or other similar boat to cease rowing and hold the oars horizontal with blades feathered.)

oar

[awr, ohr] /ɔr, oʊr/
noun
1.
a long shaft with a broad blade at one end, used as a lever for rowing or otherwise propelling or steering a boat.
2.
something resembling this or having a similar purpose.
3.
a person who rows; oarsman.
verb (used with object)
4.
to propel with or as if with oars; row.
5.
to traverse or make (one's way) by, or as if by, rowing.
verb (used without object)
6.
to row.
7.
to move or advance as if by rowing.
Idioms
8.
put in one's oar, to meddle; interfere:
He put in his oar and was told to mind his own business.
9.
rest on one's oars, to cease to make an effort; relax after exertion; stop working after success or completing a task:
Once he became president, he was content to rest on his oars.
Origin of oar
900
before 900; Middle English ore, Old English ār; cognate with Old Norse ār
Related forms
oarless, adjective
oarlike, adjective
Can be confused
oar, o'er, or, ore.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for oars
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • Terlake fell short, crashed in among the oars, and bounded off into the sea.

    The White Company Arthur Conan Doyle
  • Go to Argus, the shipbuilder, and bid him build a galley with fifty oars.

    Tanglewood Tales Nathaniel Hawthorne
  • It was already half filled with Dyaks, some of whom were hastily manning the oars.

    The Monster Men Edgar Rice Burroughs
  • In the dory the skipper, bending at his oars, was not two yards astern.

    The Black Bag Louis Joseph Vance
  • To his joy he found a pair of oars stowed beneath the thwarts.

    The Black Bag Louis Joseph Vance
  • We found her boat bottom up, and one of the oars; and it was hours since it capsized.

British Dictionary definitions for oars

oar

/ɔː/
noun
1.
a long shaft of wood for propelling a boat by rowing, having a broad blade that is dipped into and pulled against the water. Oars were also used for steering certain kinds of ancient sailing boats
2.
short for oarsman
3.
put one's oar in, to interfere or interrupt
verb
4.
to row or propel with or as if with oars: the two men were oaring their way across the lake
Derived Forms
oarless, adjective
oarlike, adjective
Word Origin
Old English ār, of Germanic origin; related to Old Norse ār
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 oars

oar

n.

Old English ar "oar," from Proto-Germanic *airo (cf. Old Norse ar, Danish aare, Swedish åra), of unknown origin; perhaps related to Latin remus "oar," Greek eretes "rower," eretmos "oar."

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Slang definitions & phrases for oars

oar

Related Terms

row with one oar

The Dictionary of American Slang, Fourth Edition by Barbara Ann Kipfer, PhD. and Robert L. Chapman, Ph.D.
Copyright (C) 2007 by HarperCollins Publishers.
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Idioms and Phrases with oars

oar

The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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Word Value for oars

4
4
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