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sever

[sev-er] /ˈsɛv ər/
verb (used with object)
1.
to separate (a part) from the whole, as by cutting or the like.
2.
to divide into parts, especially forcibly; cleave.
3.
to break off or dissolve (ties, relations, etc.).
4.
Law. to divide into parts; disunite (an estate, titles of a statute, etc.).
5.
to distinguish; discriminate between.
verb (used without object)
6.
to become separated from each other; become divided into parts.
Origin
1300-1350
1300-50; Middle English severen < Middle French sev(e)rer to separate
Related forms
half-severed, adjective
unsevered, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Examples for sever
  • When sedatives injected into the dinosaur kick in, the razor jaws close down on the tongue and sever it in a spurt of dark blood.
  • Walking upright is certainly unusual, but it doesn't sever us from the animal kingdom.
  • Also, a medic using the device could drive shrapnel across a healthy artery and accidentally sever it, he says.
  • By measuring how far they had to drag the tip to sever the wire, they were able to estimate the wire's breadth.
British Dictionary definitions for sever

sever

/ˈsɛvə/
verb
1.
to put or be put apart; separate
2.
to divide or be divided into parts
3.
(transitive) to break off or dissolve (a tie, relationship, etc)
Word Origin
C14 severen, from Old French severer, from Latin sēparāre to separate
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
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Word Origin and History for sever
v.

c.1300, from Anglo-French severer, Old French sevrer "to separate" (12c., later in French restricted to "to wean," i.e. "to separare from the mother"), from Vulgar Latin *seperare, from Latin separare "to separate" (see separate (v.)).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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