Sear Sear, v. t. [imp. & p. p. {Seared}; p. pr. & vb. n. {Searing}.] [OE. seeren, AS. se['a]rian. See {Sear}, a.] 1. To wither; to dry up. --Shak. [1913 Webster]

2. To burn (the surface of) to dryness and hardness; to cauterize; to expose to a degree of heat such as changes the color or the hardness and texture of the surface; to scorch; to make callous; as, to sear the skin or flesh. Also used figuratively. [1913 Webster]

I'm seared with burning steel. --Rowe. [1913 Webster]

It was in vain that the amiable divine tried to give salutary pain to that seared conscience. --Macaulay. [1913 Webster]

The discipline of war, being a discipline in destruction of life, is a discipline in callousness. Whatever sympathies exist are seared. --H. Spencer. [1913 Webster]

Note: Sear is allied to scorch in signification; but it is applied primarily to animal flesh, and has special reference to the effect of heat in marking the surface hard. Scorch is applied to flesh, cloth, or any other substance, and has no reference to the effect of hardness. [1913 Webster]

{To sear up}, to close by searing. ``Cherish veins of good humor, and sear up those of ill.'' --Sir W. Temple. [1913 Webster]

The Collaborative International Dictionary of English. 2000.

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  • Sear — Sear, n. [F. serre a grasp, pressing, fr. L. sera. See {Serry}.] The catch in a gunlock by which the hammer is held cocked or half cocked. [1913 Webster] {Sear spring}, the spring which causes the sear to catch in the notches by which the hammer… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Sear — may refer to:* Sear (firearm), part of the trigger mechanism on a firearm * Seir (demon), a Prince of Hell, also spelled Sear * Searing, a cooking technique which quickly cooks the exterior of a food item * Surfactant Enhanced Aquifer Remediation …   Wikipedia

  • Sear — Sear, Sere Sere (s[=e]r), a. [OE. seer, AS. se[ a]r (assumed) fr. se[ a]rian to wither; akin to D. zoor dry, LG. soor, OHG. sor[=e]n to wither, Gr. a y ein to parch, to dry, Skr. [,c]ush (for sush) to dry, to wither, Zend hush to dry. [root]152.… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • sear — [sıə US sır] v [: Old English; Origin: searian, from sear; SERE] 1.) [I always + adverb/preposition, T] to burn something with a sudden powerful heat ▪ The heat seared their skin. 2.) [I always + adverb/preposition, T] to have a very strong… …   Dictionary of contemporary English

  • sear — (v.) O.E. searian dry up, to whither, from P.Gmc. *saurajan, from root of sear dried up, withered (see SERE (Cf. sere)). Meaning to brand, to burn by hot iron is recorded from 1520s; figurative use is from 1580s. Related: Seared; searing …   Etymology dictionary

  • sear — sear·ing·ly; sear; …   English syllables

  • sear — sear1 [sir] adj. [ME seer < OE sear, dry < IE base * saus > Sans s̍úṣyati, (he) dries, withers, L sudus, dry] alt. sp. of SERE2 vt. [ME seeren < OE searian < the adj.] 1. to dry up; wither 2 …   English World dictionary

  • sear — index burn, deflagrate Burton s Legal Thesaurus. William C. Burton. 2006 …   Law dictionary

  • sear — [ sır ] verb intransitive or transitive 1. ) to burn the surface of something with extreme heat a ) to heat the surface of a piece of meat for a short time at a very high temperature to keep the juices inside 2. ) LITERARY to have a sudden and… …   Usage of the words and phrases in modern English

  • sear — vb *burn, scorch, char, singe …   New Dictionary of Synonyms

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