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dear1

[deer] /dɪər/
adjective, dearer, dearest.
1.
beloved or loved:
a dear friend.
2.
(used in the salutation of a letter as an expression of affection or respect or as a conventional greeting):
Dear Sir.
3.
precious in one's regard; cherished:
our dearest possessions.
4.
heartfelt; earnest:
one's dearest wish.
5.
high-priced; expensive:
The silk dress was too dear.
6.
charging high prices:
That shop is too dear for my budget.
7.
excessive; high:
a dear price to pay for one's independence.
8.
Obsolete. difficult to get; scarce.
9.
Obsolete. worthy; honorable.
noun
10.
a person who is good, kind, or generous:
You're a dear to help me with the work.
11.
a beloved one.
12.
(sometimes initial capital letter) an affectionate or familiar term of address, as to a child or romantic partner (sometimes offensive when used to a stranger, subordinate, etc.)
adverb
13.
dearly; fondly.
14.
at a high price:
That painting cost me dear.
interjection
15.
(used as an exclamation of surprise, distress, etc.):
Oh dear, what a disappointment! Dear me! What's all that noise?
Origin of dear1
900
before 900; Middle English dere, Old English dēore; cognate with Old High German tiuri, Old Norse dȳrr
Related forms
dearly, adverb
dearness, noun
Synonyms
1. darling, cherished. 5. See expensive.

dear2

or dere

[deer] /dɪər/
adjective, dearer, dearest. Archaic.
1.
hard; grievous.
Origin
before 1000; Middle English dere, Old English dēor brave, bold, severe
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for dearer
Historical Examples
  • The two men that had so long been nearer and dearer to each other than brothers never again interchanged one word.

  • The memory of you will be dearer to me than comfort from all else.

    Night and Morning, Complete Edward Bulwer-Lytton
  • And for the first time Nigel comprehended that the fortunes of Wallenstein were dearer to her heart than a lover's passion.

    The Mercenary W. J. Eccott
  • She could have kissed her face in the glass, it was so like that other dearer one.

    Tiverton Tales Alice Brown
  • There she had won fame, and a dearer thing yet, honor, which needs not to be known in order to shed its lonely comfort.

    Young Hilda at the Wars Arthur Gleason
  • What rendered him yet dearer to us, was that there was enmity between him and Mrs. Mitchell.

    Ranald Bannerman's Boyhood George MacDonald
  • A term once dearer than brother, but the habit of short cruises is weakening it.

    The Sailor's Word-Book William Henry Smyth
  • Steenie's unselfish solitude of soul made him every day dearer to her.

    Heather and Snow George MacDonald
  • But the enthusiast and the patriot spoke not at that hour only of himself, or that dearer self, the only being he had loved.

    The Days of Bruce Vol 1 Grace Aguilar
  • This is my son, my poor afflicted son, dearer to me than my own life.

    Barnaby Rudge Charles Dickens
British Dictionary definitions for dearer

dear

/dɪə/
adjective
1.
beloved; precious
2.
used in conventional forms of address preceding a title or name, as in Dear Sir or my dear Mr Smith
3.
(postpositive) foll by to. important; close: a wish dear to her heart
4.
  1. highly priced
  2. charging high prices
5.
appealing or pretty: what a dear little ring!
6.
for dear life, urgently or with extreme vigour or desperation
interjection
7.
used in exclamations of surprise or dismay, such as Oh dear! and dear me!
noun
8.
(often used in direct address) someone regarded with affection and tenderness; darling
adverb
9.
dearly: his errors have cost him dear
Derived Forms
dearness, noun
Word Origin
Old English dēore; related to Old Norse dӯrr
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 dearer

dear

adj.

Old English deore "precious, valuable, costly, loved, beloved," from Proto-Germanic *deurjaz (cf. Old Saxon diuri, Old Norse dyrr, Old Frisian diore, Middle Dutch dure, Dutch duur, Old High German tiuri, German teuer), ultimate origin unknown. Used interjectorily since 1690s. As a polite introductory word to letters, it is attested from mid-15c. As a noun, from late 14c., perhaps short for dear one, etc.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Idioms and Phrases with dearer

dear

In addition to the idiom beginning with
dear
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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Word Value for dearer

7
7
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