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Alternative forms[edit]


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Etymology 1[edit]

From Middle English sere, seer, seere, from Old English sēar, sīere (dry, sere, sear, withered, barren), from Proto-Germanic *sauzaz (dry), from Proto-Indo-European *sh₂ews- (dry, parched) (also reconstructed as *h₂sews-). Cognate with Dutch zoor (dry, rough), Low German soor (dry), German sohr (parched, dried up), dialectal Norwegian søyr (the desiccation and death of a tree), Lithuanian saũsas (dry), Homeric Ancient Greek αὖος (aûos, dry).


sear (comparative searer or more sear, superlative searest or most sear)

  1. Dry; withered, especially of vegetation.

Etymology 2[edit]

From Middle English seren, seeren, from Old English sēarian (to become sere, to grow sear, wither, pine away), from Proto-Germanic *sauzōną, *sauzijaną (to become dry). Related to Old High German sōrēn (to wither, wilt). See Etymology 1 for more cognates. The use in firearms terminology may relate to French serrer (to grip).


sear (third-person singular simple present sears, present participle searing, simple past and past participle seared)

  1. (transitive) To char, scorch, or burn the surface of (something) with a hot instrument.
  2. To wither; to dry up.
    (Can we find and add a quotation of Shakespeare to this entry?)
  3. (transitive, figuratively) To make callous or insensible.
  4. (transitive, figuratively) To mark permanently, as if by burning.
    The events of that day were seared into her memory.


sear (plural sears)

  1. A scar produced by searing
  2. Part of a gun that retards the hammer until the trigger is pulled.


Scottish Gaelic[edit]


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  1. eastern, east



West Frisian[edit]



  1. painful


Inflection of sear
uninflected sear
inflected seare
comparative searder
positive comparative superlative
predicative/adverbial sear searder it searst
it searste
indefinite c. sing. seare seardere searste
n. sing. sear searder searste
plural seare seardere searste
definite seare seardere searste
partitive sears searders

Further reading[edit]

  • sear (I)”, in Wurdboek fan de Fryske taal (in Dutch), 2011