put to the sword


[sawrd, sohrd]
a weapon having various forms but consisting typically of a long, straight or slightly curved blade, sharp-edged on one or both sides, with one end pointed and the other fixed in a hilt or handle.
this weapon as the symbol of military power, punitive justice, authority, etc.: The pen is mightier than the sword.
a cause of death or destruction.
war, combat, slaughter, or violence, especially military force or aggression: to perish by the sword.
(initial capital letter) Military. the code name for one of the five D-Day invasion beaches on France's Normandy coast, assaulted by British forces.
at swords' points, mutually antagonistic or hostile; opposed: Father and son are constantly at swords' point.
cross swords,
to engage in combat; fight.
to disagree violently; argue: The board members crossed swords in the selection of a president.
put to the sword, to slay; execute: The entire population of the town was put to the sword.

before 900; Middle English; Old English sweord; cognate with Dutch zwaard, German Schwert, Old Norse sverth

swordless, adjective
swordlike, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
sword (sɔːd)
1.  a thrusting, striking, or cutting weapon with a long blade having one or two cutting edges, a hilt, and usually a crosspiece or guard
2.  such a weapon worn on ceremonial occasions as a symbol of authority
3.  something resembling a sword, such as the snout of a swordfish
4.  cross swords to argue or fight
5.  the sword
 a.  violence or power, esp military power
 b.  death; destruction: to put to the sword
[Old English sweord; related to Old Saxon swerd, Old Norse sverth, Old High German swert]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009
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Word Origin & History

O.E. sweord, from P.Gmc. *swerdan (cf. O.S., O.Fris. swerd, O.N. sverð, Swed. svärd, M.Du. swaert, Du. zwaard, O.H.G. swert, Ger. Schwert), related to O.H.G. sweran "to hurt," from *swertha-, lit. "the cutting weapon," from PIE base *swer- "to cut." Contrast with plowshare is from the O.T. (e.g.
Isaiah ii.4, Micah iv.3). Swordfish is first attested c.1400; swordplay is O.E. sweordplege. Phrase put (originally do) to the sword "kill, slaughter" is recorded from 1338.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Bible Dictionary

Sword definition

of the Hebrew was pointed, sometimes two-edged, was worn in a sheath, and suspended from the girdle (Ex. 32:27; 1 Sam. 31:4; 1 Chr. 21:27; Ps. 149:6: Prov. 5:4; Ezek. 16:40; 21:3-5). It is a symbol of divine chastisement (Deut. 32:25; Ps. 7:12; 78:62), and of a slanderous tongue (Ps. 57:4; 64:3; Prov. 12:18). The word of God is likened also to a sword (Heb. 4:12; Eph. 6:17; Rev. 1:16). Gideon's watchword was, "The sword of the Lord" (Judg. 7:20).

Easton's 1897 Bible Dictionary
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