shear

[sheer]

verb (used with object), sheared, sheared or shorn, shear·ing.

verb (used without object), sheared, sheared or shorn, shear·ing.

noun


Origin of shear

before 900; (v.) Middle English sheren, Old English sceran, cognate with Dutch, German scheren, Old Norse skera; (noun) (in sense “tool for shearing”) Middle English sheres (plural), continuing Old English scērero, scēar, two words derived from the same root as the v.
Related formsshear·er, nounshear·less, adjective
Can be confusedshear sheer
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Related Words for shear

trim, snip, shave, mow, prune, fleece, groom, shorten, pare, crop

Examples from the Web for shear

Contemporary Examples of shear

Historical Examples of shear


British Dictionary definitions for shear

shear

verb shears, shearing or sheared or Australian and NZ shore, sheared or shorn

(tr) to remove (the fleece or hair) of (sheep, etc) by cutting or clipping
to cut or cut through (something) with shears or a sharp instrument
engineering to cause (a part, member, shaft, etc) to deform or fracture or (of a part, etc) to deform or fracture as a result of excess torsion or transverse load
(tr often foll by of) to strip or divestto shear someone of his power
(when intr, foll by through) to move through (something) by or as if by cutting
Scot to reap (corn, etc) with a scythe or sickle

noun

the act, process, or an instance of shearing
a shearing of a sheep or flock of sheep, esp when referred to as an indication of agea sheep of two shears
a form of deformation or fracture in which parallel planes in a body or assembly slide over one another
physics the deformation of a body, part, etc, expressed as the lateral displacement between two points in parallel planes divided by the distance between the planes
either one of the blades of a pair of shears, scissors, etc
a machine that cuts sheet material by passing a knife blade through it
a device for lifting heavy loads consisting of a tackle supported by a framework held steady by guy ropes
See also shears, shore 3
Derived Formsshearer, noun

Word Origin for shear

Old English sceran; related to Old Norse skera to cut, Old Saxon, Old High German skeran to shear; see share ²
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 shear
v.

Old English sceran, scieran (class IV strong verb; past tense scear, past participle scoren) "to cleave, hew, cut with a sharp instrument; cut (hair); shear (sheep)," from Proto-Germanic *sker- "to cut" (cf. Old Norse and Old Frisian skera, Dutch scheren, German scheren "to shear"), from PIE *(s)ker- (1) "to cut, to scrape, to hack" (cf. Sanskrit krnati "hurts, wounds, kills," krntati "cuts;" Hittite karsh- "to cut off;" Greek keirein "to cut, shear;" Latin curtus "short;" Lithuanian skiriu "to separate;" Old Irish scaraim "I separate;" Welsh ysgar "to separate," ysgyr "fragment").

n.

"act of clipping," 1610s, also as a unit of measure of the age of a sheep, from shear (v.). Scientific and mechanical sense "type of strain" is from 1850.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

shear in Science

shear

[shîr]

A force, movement or pressure applied to an object perpendicular to a given axis, with greater value on one side of the axis than the other. See more at shear force stress strain.
See skew.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.