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Origin of sear

1
First recorded before 900; Middle English adjective ser(e), Old English sēar; cognate with Dutch zoor; the verb is derivative of the adjective

synonym study for sear

1. See burn1.

OTHER WORDS FROM sear

un·seared, adjective

Other definitions for sear (2 of 2)

sear2
[ seer ]
/ sɪər /

noun
a pivoted piece that holds the hammer at full cock or half cock in the firing mechanism of small arms.

Origin of sear

2
First recorded in 1550–60; from Middle French serre “a grip,” derivative of serrer “to lock up, close,” ultimately from Late Latin serāre “to bar (a door)”
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2022

How to use sear in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for sear (1 of 2)

sear1
/ (sɪə) /

verb (tr)
to scorch or burn the surface of
to brand with a hot iron
to cause to wither or dry up
rare to make callous or unfeeling
noun
a mark caused by searing
adjective
poetic dried up

Word Origin for sear

Old English sēarian to become withered, from sēar withered; related to Old High German sōrēn, Greek hauos dry, Sanskrit sōsa drought

British Dictionary definitions for sear (2 of 2)

sear2
/ (sɪə) /

noun
the catch in the lock of a small firearm that holds the hammer or firing pin cocked

Word Origin for sear

C16: probably from Old French serre a clasp, from serrer to hold firmly, from Late Latin sērāre to bolt, from Latin sera a bar
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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