\ ˈber How to pronounce bare (audio) \
barer; barest

Definition of bare

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1a : lacking a natural, usual, or appropriate covering
b(1) : lacking clothing bare feet
(2) obsolete : bareheaded
c : lacking any tool or weapon opened the box with his bare hands
2 : open to view : exposed laying bare their secrets
3a : unfurnished or scantily supplied a bare room
b : destitute bare of all safeguards
4a : having nothing left over or added the bare necessities of life
b : mere a bare two hours away
c : devoid of amplification or adornment the bare facts
5 obsolete : worthless

bare

verb
\ ˈber How to pronounce bare (audio) \
bared; baring

Definition of bare (Entry 2 of 3)

transitive verb

: to make or lay (something) bare (see bare entry 1) : uncover

bare

Definition of bare (Entry 3 of 3)

archaic past tense of bear

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Other Words from bare

Adjective

bareness noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for bare

Synonyms: Adjective

Synonyms: Verb

Antonyms: Verb

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Choose the Right Synonym for bare

Adjective

bare, naked, nude, bald, barren mean deprived of naturally or conventionally appropriate covering. bare implies the removal of what is additional, superfluous, ornamental, or dispensable. an apartment with bare walls naked suggests absence of protective or ornamental covering but may imply a state of nature, of destitution, or of defenselessness. poor half-naked children nude applies especially to the unclothed human figure. a nude model posing for art students bald implies actual or seeming absence of natural covering and may suggest a conspicuous bareness. a bald mountain peak barren often suggests aridity or impoverishment or sterility. barren plains

Usage Note on Bear

Verb

There is considerable confusion between the verbs bear and bare. It may help to remember that the verb bare has only one meaning: "to uncover," as in "bare your shoulders" and "a dog baring its teeth." All other uses of the verb are for bear: "bearing children," "the right to bear arms," "bearing up under the stress/weight," "can't bear the thought," "bear south," "it bears repeating."

There is occasional confusion between bear and bare in adjectival uses (as in "he rubbed his bear arms"), but bear is properly a noun and only used like an adjective in the financial phrase bear market. All other uses refer to the state of being uncovered or naked and should therefore be bare: "bare necessities," "bare essentials," "bare arms," "bare bones," "bare-knuckle," and so on.

Usage Note on Bear

Adjective

There is considerable confusion between the verbs bear and bare. It may help to remember that the verb bare has only one meaning: "to uncover," as in "bare your shoulders" and "a dog baring its teeth." All other uses of the verb are for bear: "bearing children," "the right to bear arms," "bearing up under the stress/weight," "can't bear the thought," "bear south," "it bears repeating."

There is occasional confusion between bear and bare in adjectival uses (as in "he rubbed his bear arms"), but bear is properly a noun and only used like an adjective in the financial phrase bear market. All other uses refer to the state of being uncovered or naked and should therefore be bare: "bare necessities," "bare essentials," "bare arms," "bare bones," "bare-knuckle," and so on.

Examples of bare in a Sentence

Adjective The brittle-looking branches of bare trees reached up from the horizon, and smoke could be seen curling from the chimneys of the sturdy stone houses in the villages we passed through. — David McAninch, Saveur, November 2008 The dining room is warm and comfortable in a quasi-Tuscan-villa style, with bare wood floors, mottled walls,  … and a glass room divider etched with images of grapes. — Colman Andrews, Gourmet, March 2007 A scant two hours after his Derby victory, Monarchos was back in his … stall, beneath a bare bulb, eating carrots from a red bucket. — Steve Rushin, Sports Illustrated, 14 May 2001 There was a rug in the front room of the house, but the other floors were bare. Do not let the bare wires touch. He covered her bare arms with his coat. He had a glove on his left hand, but his right hand was bare. The ground was bare where the statue had stood for years. There was only one bare shelf. Her office was pretty bare, having only one desk and one chair. This is the barest room in the house. He only told me the bare facts about what happened. Verb Ed McMahon calls upon the canine coach to help him settle down his aggressive … terrier, which is nice to Ed but bares its teeth at guests. TV Guide, 29 Oct.-4 Nov. 2007 You could argue that the very act of conducting a lengthy poll by telephone skews the response pool. What sort of person bares her soul to pollsters for upward of an hour—and during the holiday season yet? — Katha Pollitt, Nation, 4/11 Aug. 2003 When Eastman called Death in the Afternoon (Hemingway's nonfiction book about bullfighting) "a literary style of wearing false hair on the chest," Hemingway had no other options than to bare his hirsute midsection and duke it out with his rival author in front of their editor, Max Perkins. The common mythology is that Hemingway beat Eastman to a bloody pulp, but Perkins' account had Eastman gaining the upper hand. — Will Manley, Booklist, 1 Apr. 2001 The better analogy is to bare all on the talk shows in which ordinary people are encouraged to reveal intimate aspects of their private lives. — Richard A. Posner, New Republic, 21 Aug. 2000 He bared his chest to show the scar. finally bared the secret that she had kept to herself for so long
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Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective In many ways, the pandemic has laid bare the shortcomings and vulnerabilities that already existed within the hospitality industry. Christina Tkacik, baltimoresun.com, "Can beloved Baltimore pizza place Joe Squared be a model for the flagging restaurant industry?," 9 Dec. 2020 The pandemic has laid bare the shortcomings of the U.S.'s caregiving system. Claire Zillman, Fortune, "Melinda Gates calls for a caregiving ‘czar’," 4 Dec. 2020 This pandemic has laid bare the lack of worker protections and the deep injustices of our health care system. Asad Zaman, Star Tribune, "Voters delivered a mandate to share the wealth," 13 Nov. 2020 The pandemic has laid bare the lopsided reliance on older Americans to run elections. Barbara Rodriguez, USA TODAY, "The country needs poll workers. Young women are stepping up," 31 Oct. 2020 The New School’s financial model is almost entirely tuition-dependent; the pandemic simply laid bare its unusual vulnerability. Ginia Bellafante, New York Times, "This School Was Built for Idealists. It Could Use Some Rich Alumni.," 16 Oct. 2020 While Covestro Chief Executive Officer Markus Steilemann has expanded the company into specialty markets, the slump in the automotive industry and impact of Covid-19 on earnings has laid bare its ongoing exposure to cyclical markets. Andrew Marc Noel, Bloomberg.com, "Apollo Weighs Deal for $10 Billion Plastics Firm Covestro," 17 Sep. 2020 In my line of work as a health care epidemiologist and infectious diseases physician, the COVID-19 pandemic has laid bare our country’s woeful unpreparedness to cope with a highly contagious virus. Nasia Safdar, jsonline.com, "Opinion: Invest in public health and preparedness to meet the challenge of the coronavirus pandemic," 10 Sep. 2020 The Covid-19 pandemic has laid bare the realities of why nursing workforce shortages continue to resurface. Jan Jones-schenk, STAT, "Go national to solve the country’s looming nursing shortage," 4 Sep. 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb MacGillis lays bare the extreme inequalities in distance learning, and the overall sense of fear and distrust (combined with the lack of leadership and guidance from the government) that paralyzed officials amid the debate of reopening schools. Cheri Lucas Rowlands, Longreads, "Longreads Best of 2020: Investigative Reporting," 21 Dec. 2020 Warm up in colder climates with the brand’s great selection of tights and socks for under dresses, skirts and boots — or bare a bit more in the sun with Calzedona’s range of bikinis and cover-ups. Krystin Arneson, CNN Underscored, "The best fashion and beauty deals to shop this Cyber Monday," 30 Nov. 2020 Warm up in colder climates with the brand’s great selection of tights and socks for under dresses, skirts and boots—or bare a bit more in the sun with Calzedona’s range of bikinis and cover-ups. Krystin Arneson, CNN Underscored, "The best fashion and beauty deals to shop this Black Friday," 27 Nov. 2020 Some of them describe feeling under siege, and many protect their homes with wrought-iron gates or guard dogs who bare their teeth at anyone passing by. Megan Cassidy, SFChronicle.com, "East Oakland the epicenter of city’s surge of homicides amid pandemic. ‘The situation is getting worse’," 17 Oct. 2020 And many of those women bare their mastectomy scars (whether on social media or in their private lives) with pride and love. Jillian Kramer, Glamour, "13 Women Who Wear Their Mastectomy Scars Like a Badge of Honor," 28 Oct. 2020 All of this has laid to bare the immense risk and challenges of creating a live service game, a subgenre of online multiplayer games that have seldom released without headline-grabbing disasters. Washington Post, "‘Avengers’ updates showcases the best of the studio, and the worst of the game," 19 Oct. 2020 They bare fangs one at-bat at a time, forcing opponents to peek nervously over vulnerable shoulders. Bryce Miller Columnist, San Diego Union-Tribune, "Column: Padres bash, bash, bash some more in wild comeback against Cardinals," 1 Oct. 2020 While Gigi, 25, cradled her baby bump over a white dress for the outdoor sunset snap, Bella pulled up her hot pink tank top to bare her post-meal tummy. Jen Juneau, PEOPLE.com, "Bella Hadid Jokingly Compares Her 'Burger' Belly to Pregnant Sister Gigi Hadid's Baby Bump," 15 Sep. 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'bare.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of bare

Adjective

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Verb

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for bare

Adjective and Verb

Middle English, from Old English bær; akin to Old High German bar naked, Lithuanian basas barefoot

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Time Traveler for bare

Time Traveler

The first known use of bare was before the 12th century

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Statistics for bare

Last Updated

20 Jan 2021

Cite this Entry

“Bare.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/bare. Accessed 22 Jan. 2021.

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More Definitions for bare

How to pronounce bare (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of bare

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: not having a covering
: not covered by clothing, shoes, a hat, etc.
: not covered by leaves, grass, trees, or plants

bare

verb
How to pronounce bare (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of bare (Entry 2 of 2)

: to remove the covering from (something)
\ ˈber How to pronounce bare (audio) \
barer; barest

Kids Definition of bare

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : having no covering : naked bare feet The trees were bare of leaves.
2 : empty entry 1 sense 1 The cupboard was bare.
3 : having nothing left over or added : mere the bare necessities … Thorton was abreast of him and a bare half-dozen strokes away …— Jack London, The Call of the Wild
4 : bald sense 2 the bare facts

bare

verb
bared; baring

Kids Definition of bare (Entry 2 of 2)

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Comments on bare

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