• synonyms


adjective, bar·er, bar·est.
  1. without covering or clothing; naked; nude: bare legs.
  2. without the usual furnishings, contents, etc.: bare walls.
  3. open to view; unconcealed; undisguised: his bare dislike of neckties.
  4. unadorned; bald; plain: the bare facts.
  5. (of cloth) napless or threadbare.
  6. scarcely or just sufficient; mere: the bare necessities of life.
  7. Obsolete. with the head uncovered; bareheaded.
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verb (used with object), bared, bar·ing.
  1. to open to view; reveal or divulge: to bare one's arms; to bare damaging new facts.
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Origin of bare

before 900; Middle English; Old English bær; cognate with Old Frisian ber, Dutch baar, Old Saxon, Old High German, German bar, Old Norse berr, Lithuanian bãsas barefoot, Russian bos; akin to Armenian bok naked
Related formsbar·ish, adjectivebare·ness, noun

Synonyms for bare

Synonym study

2. Bare, stark, barren share the sense of lack or absence of something that might be expected. Bare, the least powerful in connotation of the three, means lack of expected or usual coverings, furnishings, or embellishments: bare floor, feet, head. Stark implies extreme severity or desolation and resultant bleakness or dreariness: a stark landscape; a stark, emotionless countenance. Barren carries a strong sense of sterility and oppressive dullness: barren fields; a barren relationship. 6. See mere1.

Antonyms for bare

1. covered.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words for barer

naked, uncovered, bald, exposed, desolate, vacant, arid, empty, barren, stark, bleak, cold, mere, meager, uncover, expose, divulge, stripped, unclad, undressed

Examples from the Web for barer

Historical Examples of barer

  • Yes, the reality was barer than the picture that she had seen.

    The Man Who Was Good

    Leonard Merrick

  • They are poorer and barer than the worst you would see in Russia.

  • If our life and worship was barer and harder than that of the past, it was also far higher.

    The Last Miracle

    M. P. Shiel

  • A simpler, barer place than a room in barracks it would be hard to imagine.

    A Cadet's Honor

    Upton Sinclair

  • She found his room poorer and barer even than she had fancied it might be.

British Dictionary definitions for barer


  1. unclothed; exposed: used esp of a part of the body
  2. without the natural, conventional, or usual covering or clothinga bare tree
  3. lacking appropriate furnishings, etca bare room
  4. unembellished; simplethe bare facts
  5. (prenomial) just sufficient; merehe earned the bare minimum
  6. with one's bare hands without a weapon or tool
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  1. (tr) to make bare; uncover; reveal
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Derived Formsbareness, noun

Word Origin for bare

Old English bær; compare Old Norse berr, Old High German bar naked, Old Slavonic bosǔ barefoot


  1. archaic a past tense of bear 1
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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

Word Origin and History for barer



Old English barian, from bare (adj.). Related: Bared; baring.

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Old English bær "naked, uncovered, unclothed," from Proto-Germanic *bazaz (cf. German bar, Old Norse berr, Dutch baar), from PIE *bhosos (cf. Armenian bok "naked;" Old Church Slavonic bosu, Lithuanian basas "barefoot"). Meaning "sheer, absolute" (c.1200) is from the notion of "complete in itself."

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper