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[rey-zer] /ˈreɪ zər/
a sharp-edged instrument used especially for shaving the face or trimming the hair.
an electrically powered instrument used for the same purpose.
verb (used with object)
to shave, cut, or remove with or as if with a razor.
on the razor's edge, in a difficult or precarious position.
Origin of razor
1250-1300; Middle English rasour < Old French rasor, equivalent to ras(er) to raze + -or -or2
Related forms
razorless, adjective
unrazored, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for razor
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • The blade was broad, with the edge of a razor and the point of a needle.

  • Not a comb nor a razor left; not a garment to make myself decent in!

    Homeward Bound James Fenimore Cooper
  • He wiped his razor at last, poured some water in a bowl and doused his face.

    Ashton-Kirk, Investigator John T. McIntyre
  • Then he shot me a glance as sharp as a razor, and we looked into one another's eyes.

    The Market-Place Harold Frederic
  • Some there were who cut their throat with a razor or threw themselves from a window.

    The Gods are Athirst Anatole France
British Dictionary definitions for razor


a sharp implement used esp by men for shaving the face
on a razor's edge, on a razor-edge, in an acute dilemma
(transitive) to cut or shave with a razor
Word Origin
C13: from Old French raseor, from raser to shave; see raze
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 razor

late 13c., from Old French raseor "a razor" (12c.), from raser "to scrape, shave" (see rase). Razor clam (1835, American English) so called because its shell resembles an old folding straight-razor. Razor-edge figurative of sharpness or a fine surface from 1680s.

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

The Nazarites were forbidden to make use of the razor (Num. 6:5; Judg. 13:5). At their consecration the Levites were shaved all over with a razor (Num. 8:7; comp. Ps. 52:2; Ezek. 5:1).

Easton's 1897 Bible Dictionary
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Idioms and Phrases with razor
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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