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[sheyv] /ʃeɪv/
verb (used without object), shaved, shaved or (especially in combination) shaven, shaving.
to remove a growth of beard with a razor.
verb (used with object), shaved, shaved or (especially in combination) shaven, shaving.
to remove hair from (the face, legs, etc.) by cutting it off close to the skin with a razor.
to cut off (hair, especially the beard) close to the skin with a razor (often followed by off or away).
to cut or scrape away the surface of with a sharp-edged tool:
to shave hides in preparing leather.
to reduce to shavings or thin slices:
to shave wood.
to cut or trim closely:
to shave a lawn.
to scrape, graze, or come very near to:
The car just shaved the garage door.
Commerce. to purchase (a note) at a rate of discount greater than is legal or customary.
to reduce or deduct from:
The store shaved the price of winter suits in the spring.
the act, process, or an instance of shaving or being shaved.
a thin slice; a shaving.
any of various tools for shaving, scraping, removing thin slices, etc.
Origin of shave
before 900; (v.) Middle English schaven, schafen, Old English sc(e)afan; cognate with Dutch schaven to plane (a plank), abrade (the skin), Low German schaven, German schaben, Old Norse skafa to scrape, Gothic skaban to shear, shave; (noun) Middle English schave tool for shaving, Old English sc(e)afa, derivative of the v.
Related forms
shavable, shaveable, adjective
reshave, verb, reshaved, reshaving.
unshavable, adjective
unshaveable, adjective
unshaved, adjective
well-shaved, adjective
7. brush, glance, touch. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2016.
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Examples from the Web for unshaved
Historical Examples
  • When we came in he was standing with his back to us, leaning against the mantelpiece, his unshaved chin on his hands.

    The Romance of His Life Mary Cholmondeley
  • I was struck now by the flushed weariness of his face, and the look of age the grey stubble on his unshaved chin gave him.

    Tono Bungay H. G. Wells
  • A dirty, unshaved, mud-bespattered figure digging near by, spoke to him with a cultured voice and a gay laugh.

    The Wonder of War on Land Francis Rolt-Wheeler
  • The staring was not due to my unshaved face, but because there had been a rumor that Wedel and I had fallen at Kalisch.

    The Red Battle Flyer Capt. Manfred Freiherr von Richthofen
  • The faces of soldiers and officers were unshaved sallow drawn with fatigue and anxiety.

    The Marne Edith Wharton
  • The old servant, who had slept on a sofa outside, looked haggard and unshaved, and stared suspiciously as he heard the order.

    To Leeward F. Marion Crawford
  • Two thousand men, unshaved and tousled, with pain in their joints from those trench nights, were listening.

    Golden Lads Arthur Gleason and Helen Hayes Gleason
  • A big, unshaved man in a black sheepskin cap opened his arms and the woman with the baby hurried to him.

    Aliens William McFee
  • I am told to remain here for three days more, unwashed and unshaved!

  • And I had made all my points on the idea that they were unshaved and clothed anyhow.

British Dictionary definitions for unshaved


verb (mainly transitive) shaves, shaving, shaved, shaved, shaven
(also intransitive) to remove (the beard, hair, etc) from (the face, head, or body) by scraping the skin with a razor
to cut or trim very closely
to reduce to shavings
to remove thin slices from (wood, etc) with a sharp cutting tool; plane or pare
to touch or graze in passing
(informal) to reduce (a price) by a slight amount
(US, commerce) to purchase (a commercial paper) at a greater rate of discount than is customary or legal
the act or an instance of shaving
any tool for scraping
a thin slice or shaving
an instance of barely touching something
(informal) close shave, a narrow escape
Derived Forms
shavable, shaveable, adjective
Word Origin
Old English sceafan; related to Old Norse skafa, Gothic skaban to shave, Latin scabere to scrape
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 unshaved



Old English sceafan (strong verb, past tense scof, past participle scafen), "to scrape, shave, polish," from Proto-Germanic *skaban (cf. Old Norse skafa, Middle Dutch scaven, German schaben, Gothic skaban "scratch, shave, scrape"), from PIE *skabh-, collateral form of root *(s)kep- "to cut, to scrape, to hack" (see scabies). Related: Shaved; shaving. Original strong verb status is preserved in past tense form shaven. Specifically in reference to cutting the hair close from mid-13c. Figurative sense of "to strip (someone) of money or possessions" is attested from late 14c.


c.1600, "something shaved off;" from shave (v.); Old English sceafa meant "tool for shaving." Meaning "operation of shaving" is from 1838. Meaning "a grazing touch" is recorded from 1834. Phrase a close shave is from 1856, on notion of "a slight, grazing touch."

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



To reduce: They've shaved the estimate a little (1898+)

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 unshaved


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