sever

verb
sev·​er | \ ˈse-vər How to pronounce sever (audio) \
severed; severing\ ˈsev-​riŋ How to pronounce severing (audio) , ˈse-​və-​ \

Definition of sever

transitive verb

: to put or keep apart : divide especially : to remove (something, such as a part) by or as if by cutting

intransitive verb

: to become separated

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Choose the Right Synonym for sever

separate, part, divide, sever, sunder, divorce mean to become or cause to become disunited or disjointed. separate may imply any of several causes such as dispersion, removal of one from others, or presence of an intervening thing. separated her personal life from her career part implies the separating of things or persons in close union or association. vowed never to part divide implies separating into pieces or sections by cutting or breaking. civil war divided the nation sever implies violence especially in the removal of a part or member. a severed limb sunder suggests violent rending or wrenching apart. a city sundered by racial conflict divorce implies separating two things that commonly interact and belong together. cannot divorce scientific research from moral responsibility

Examples of sever in a Sentence

He severed the lowest tree limbs. His finger was severed in the accident. Activists are asking the government to sever all diplomatic relations with the country.
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Recent Examples on the Web

In another instance, Tillerson explained in detail being surprised by the 2017 Persian Gulf crisis in which key Arab allies severed ties with Qatar, another key U.S. ally. Author: John Hudson, Josh Dawsey, Anchorage Daily News, "Tillerson says Kushner left him in the dark on conversations with foreign nations," 27 June 2019 In another instance, Tillerson explained in detail being blindsided by the 2017 Gulf crisis in which key Arab allies severed ties with Qatar, another key U.S. ally. The Washington Post, The Mercury News, "Tillerson: Kushner kept me in the dark on foreign policy," 27 June 2019 Trump insists his internal polling shows him ahead, but his campaign severed ties with its pollsters after leaked internal polling showed him trailing Biden by double digits in the key swing states of Wisconsin, Pennsylvania, Florida, and Michigan. David Jackson, USA TODAY, "Trump floats new slogan 'Keep America Great' as he launches 2020 bid at Orlando rally," 19 June 2019 So far, no church has followed the Ecumenical Patriarchate in fully recognising the Ukrainian body, nor has any followed Moscow in completely severing ties with Patriarch Bartholomew. Erasmus, The Economist, "The gift of overcoming barriers eludes the world’s Orthodox Christians," 15 June 2019 The Palestinian Authority, which has complained that the White House favors Israel, severed ties with the Trump administration following several actions targeting them. Deb Riechmann, The Seattle Times, "US to roll out economic part of Mideast peace plan," 20 May 2019 The Palestinians, who seek east Jerusalem as their capital, condemned the decision and severed nearly all ties with the Americans. Josef Federman, Fox News, "UN official: Palestinian refugee issue can't be wished away," 24 Aug. 2018 The passionate debate over gun control spilled over into United Continental Holdings Inc.’s annual meeting, when an attendee grilled Chief Executive Officer Oscar Munoz about why the carrier severed its ties with the National Rifle Association. Julie Johnsson, Bloomberg.com, "United Air CEO Says Decision to Drop NRA Discounts Was Personal," 23 May 2018 Bricolage severed ties with the Scholars First Transportation company last December after a student was physically attacked by a bus driver. nola.com, "Bricolage Academy founder Josh Densen to step down as CEO," 12 June 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'sever.' 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 sever

14th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense

History and Etymology for sever

Middle English, from Anglo-French severer, from Latin separare — more at separate

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Statistics for sever

Last Updated

5 Jul 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for sever

The first known use of sever was in the 14th century

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More Definitions for sever

sever

verb

English Language Learners Definition of sever

: to cut off (something) : to remove or separate (something) by cutting
: to end (a relationship, connection, etc.) completely

sever

verb
sev·​er | \ ˈse-vər How to pronounce sever (audio) \
severed; severing

Kids Definition of sever

: to cut off … the sword … severed the tip of his tail.— Brian Jacques, Redwall
sev·​er | \ ˈse-vər How to pronounce sever (audio) \
severed; severing

Legal Definition of sever

1 : to end (a joint tenancy) by ending one or all of the unities of time, title, possession, or interest (as by conveying one tenant's interest to another party)
2 : to separate (as a contract) into different parts (as independent obligations) in order to treat each separately
3a : to try (criminal offenses or defendants) separately in order to avoid prejudice
b : to split (a criminal trial) into multiple trials in order to avoid prejudice
c : to try (civil claims or issues pleaded in the same case) separately

Other Words from sever

severance \ ˈse-​vrəns, -​və-​rens How to pronounce severance (audio) \ noun

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More from Merriam-Webster on sever

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with sever

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for sever

Spanish Central: Translation of sever

Nglish: Translation of sever for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of sever for Arabic Speakers

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