Originally two words; from Old English on (“a (preposition)”) sundran (“separate position”), from Proto-Germanic *sunder, *sundraz. Cognate with Danish sønder, Swedish sönder, Dutch zonder, German sonder, Icelandic sundur, Faroese sundur and Norwegian sunder/sønder; akin to Gothic 𐍃𐌿𐌽𐌳𐍂𐍉 (sundrō).
- (UK, Received Pronunciation) IPA(key): /əˈsʌndə/
- (US, General American) enPR: ə-sŭnʹdər, IPA(key): /əˈsʌndɚ/
Audio (Southern England) (file)
- Rhymes: -ʌndə(ɹ)
- Hyphenation: asun‧der
- (archaic, literary) Into separate parts or pieces.
- Synonyms: apart, in twain
- Lest anyone find her treasure, she tore the map asunder and cast its pieces into the wind.
- c. 1597 (date written), William Shakespeare, “The Merry Wiues of Windsor”, in Mr. William Shakespeares Comedies, Histories, & Tragedies […] (First Folio), London: […] Isaac Iaggard, and Ed[ward] Blount, published 1623, →OCLC, [Act III, scene i]:
- Page. I warrant you, he’s the man should fight with him.
Robert Shallow. […] It appears so by his weapons. Keep them asunder:
- 1866, Charles Dickens, The Signal-Man:
- On both of those occasions, he came back to the fire with the inexplicable air upon him which I had remarked, without being able to define, when we were so far asunder.
- See also Thesaurus:asunder