Origin of spear

1
before 900; Middle English (noun), Old English spere; cognate with Dutch, German speer
Related formsspear·er, noun

spear

2
[speer]

noun

a sprout or shoot of a plant, as a blade of grass or an acrospire of grain.

verb (used without object)

to sprout; shoot; send up or rise in a spear or spears.

Origin of spear

2
1520–30; variant of spire1, perhaps influenced by spear1
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019


Examples from the Web for speared

Contemporary Examples of speared

Historical Examples of speared

  • They speared a sea-lion, which, however, swam off with the spear sticking in its body.

    Aino Folk-Tales

    Basil Hall Chamberlain

  • This time the flesh had not been devoured, but the poor beasts had, in every case, been speared.

  • And he bit a generous inch off the cold sausage which he had speared with the carving-fork.

    The Magic City

    Edith Nesbit

  • No, he got speared when he was lying in his bunk readin' a book one night.

  • He chuckled and speared another cube of steak with his fork.

    The Highest Treason

    Randall Garrett


British Dictionary definitions for speared

spear

1

noun

a weapon consisting of a long shaft with a sharp pointed end of metal, stone, or wood that may be thrown or thrust
a similar implement used to catch fish
another name for spearman

verb

to pierce (something) with or as if with a spear
Derived Formsspearer, noun

Word Origin for spear

Old English spere; related to Old Norse spjör spears, Greek sparos gilthead

spear

2

noun

a shoot, slender stalk, or blade, as of grass, asparagus, or broccoli

Word Origin for spear

C16: probably variant of spire 1, influenced by spear 1
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 speared

spear

n.1

Old English spere, from Proto-Germanic *speri (cf. Old Norse spjör, Old Saxon, Old Frisian sper, Dutch speer, Old High German sper, German Speer "spear"), from PIE root *sper- "spear, pole" (cf. Old Norse sparri "spar, rafter," and perhaps also Latin sparus "hunting spear").

spear

n.2

"sprout of a plant," 1540s, variant of spire.

spear

v.

1755, from spear (n.1). Related: Speared; spearing.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper