sheer

1
[ sheer ]
/ ʃɪər /

adjective, sheer·er, sheer·est.

adverb

clear; completely; quite: ran sheer into the thick of battle.
perpendicularly; vertically; down or up very steeply.

noun

a thin, diaphanous material, as chiffon or voile.

Origin of sheer

1
1175–1225; Middle English scere, shere, schere free, clear, bright, thin; probably < Old Norse skǣrr; change of sk- > s(c)h- perhaps by influence of the related Old English scīr (E dial. shire clear, pure, thin); cognate with German schier, Old Norse skīr, Gothic skeirs clear; see shine1

ANTONYMS FOR sheer

OTHER WORDS FROM sheer

sheer·ly, adverbsheer·ness, noun

WORDS THAT MAY BE CONFUSED WITH sheer

shear sheer
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for sheerly

British Dictionary definitions for sheerly (1 of 2)

sheer1
/ (ʃɪə) /

adjective

adverb

steeply or perpendicularly
completely or absolutely

noun

any transparent fabric used for making garments

Derived forms of sheer

sheerly, adverbsheerness, noun

Word Origin for sheer

Old English scīr; related to Old Norse skīrr bright, Gothic skeirs clear, Middle High German schīr

British Dictionary definitions for sheerly (2 of 2)

sheer2
/ (ʃɪə) /

verb (foll by off or away ( from ))

to deviate or cause to deviate from a course
(intr) to avoid an unpleasant person, thing, topic, etc

noun

the upward sweep of the deck or bulwarks of a vessel
nautical the position of a vessel relative to its mooring

Word Origin for sheer

C17: perhaps variant of shear
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