He went on like that until he wore down Henry's desire to go to Cambridge.
Wid de troublulation and bombation I hab to tend wid an' de brain all wore down, you aint blame me for not know.
Gradually I wore down her defenses and finally she sobbed out the whole pitiful story.
When the lugger fetched to windward of the vessel she wore down on her before the wind.
William Hutton wrote the history of his family with one pen, which he wore down to the stump.
The day wore down to the Cuban dusk, in which the shadows are all grim and of ghostly shape.
The fear against which Siegmund set his face like flint, and the woe which he wore down, are unknown to the son.
She pulled a veil she wore down over her gaunt face, and with the last word hurried out and disappeared.
And what did you do with father's hat, the one you wore down there?
An East wind for three days brought steady deluges of high water that wore down the shore-line almost visibly.
Old English werian "to clothe, put on," from Proto-Germanic *wazjanan (cf. Old Norse verja, Old High German werian, Gothic gawasjan "to clothe"), from PIE *wes- "to clothe" (cf. Sanskrit vaste "he puts on," vasanam "garment;" Avestan vah-; Greek esthes "clothing," hennymi "to clothe," eima "garment;" Latin vestire "to clothe;" Welsh gwisgo, Breton gwiska; Old English wæstling "sheet, blanket;" Hittite washshush "garments," washanzi "they dress").
The Germanic forms "were homonyms of the vb. for 'prevent, ward off, protect' (Goth. warjan, O.E. werian, etc.), and this was prob. a factor in their early displacement in most of the Gmc. languages" [Buck]. Shifted from a weak verb (past tense and past participle wered) to a strong one (past tense wore, past participle worn) in 14c. on analogy of rhyming strong verbs such as bear and tear.
Secondary sense of "use up, gradually damage" (late 13c.) is from effect of continued use on clothes. To be the worse for wear is attested from 1782; noun phrase wear and tear is first recorded 1660s.
"action of wearing" (clothes), mid-15c., from wear (v.). Meaning "what one wears" is 1570s. To be the worse for wear is attested from 1782; noun phrase wear and tear is first recorded 1660s, implying the sense "process of being degraded by use."