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See also: Pierce


Etymology 1[edit]

From Middle English perce, from Old French percier, from its conjugated forms such as (jeo) pierce (I pierce), probably from Vulgar Latin *pertūsiō, from Latin pertūsus, past participle of pertundō (thrust or bore through), from per- (through) + tundō (beat, pound).



pierce (third-person singular simple present pierces, present participle piercing, simple past and past participle pierced)

  1. (transitive) to puncture; to break through
    The diver pierced the surface of the water with scarcely a splash.
    to pierce the enemy's line; a shot pierced the ship
    • (Can we date this quote by Dryden and provide title, author's full name, and other details?)
      I pierce [] her tender side.
  2. (transitive) to create a hole in the skin for the purpose of inserting jewelry
    Can you believe he pierced his tongue?
  3. (transitive) to break or interrupt abruptly
    A scream pierced the silence.
  4. (transitive, figuratively) To get to the heart or crux of (a matter).
    to pierce a mystery
  5. (transitive, figuratively) To penetrate; to affect deeply.

Etymology 2[edit]

Borrowed from Japanese ピアス (piasu, pierced earring). See above for more.


pierce (plural pierces)

  1. (Japan) A pierced earring.

Derived terms[edit]


  • Dutch: piercing
  • Japanese: ピアス


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