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[beer] /bɪər/
a frame or stand on which a corpse or the coffin containing it is laid before burial.
such a stand together with the corpse or coffin.
Origin of bier
before 900; Middle English bere, Old English bēr, bǣr(e); cognate with Old High German bāra (German Bahre), Dutch, Danish baar, Swedish bår; spelling influenced by French bière; akin to bear1, barrow1
Can be confused
beer, bier. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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British Dictionary definitions for bier


a platform or stand on which a corpse or a coffin containing a corpse rests before burial
Word Origin
Old English bǣr; related to beran to bear1, Old High German bāra bier, Sanskrit bhārá a burden
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 bier

Old English bær (West Saxon), ber (Anglian) "handbarrow, litter, bed," from West Germanic *bero (cf. Old Saxon, Old High German bara, Old Frisian bere, Middle Dutch bare, Dutch baar, German Bahre "bier"), from PIE root *bher- (1) "to carry; to bear children," and thus related to the Old English verb beran "to bear" (see bear (v.)), making a bier etymologically anything used for carrying, only later limited to funerary sense. Since c.1600, spelling influenced by French bière, from Old French biere, from Frankish *bera, from the same Germanic root.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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bier in the Bible

the frame on which dead bodies were conveyed to the grave (Luke 7:14).

Easton's 1897 Bible Dictionary
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