sever

play
verb sev·er \ˈse-vər\

Definition of sever

severed

;

severing

play \ˈsev-riŋ, ˈse-və-\
  1. transitive verb
  2. :  to put or keep apart :  divide; especially :  to remove (something, such as a part) by or as if by cutting

  3. intransitive verb
  4. :  to become separated

Examples of sever in a Sentence

  1. He severed the lowest tree limbs.

  2. His finger was severed in the accident.

  3. Activists are asking the government to sever all diplomatic relations with the country.

Recent Examples of sever from the Web

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.

Origin and Etymology of sever

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


First Known Use: 14th century

Synonym Discussion of 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

SEVER Defined for English Language Learners

sever

play
verb

Definition of sever for English Language Learners

  • : to cut off (something) : to remove or separate (something) by cutting

  • : to end (a relationship, connection, etc.) completely


SEVER Defined for Kids

sever

play
verb sev·er \ˈse-vər\

Definition of sever for Students

severed

;

severing

  1. :  to cut off … the sword … severed the tip of his tail. — Brian Jacques, Redwall


Law Dictionary

sever

play
transitive verb sev·er \ˈse-vər\

Legal Definition of sever

severed

severing

  1. 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. 2 :  to separate (as a contract) into different parts (as independent obligations) in order to treat each separately

  3. 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

severance

\ˈse-vrəns, -və-rens\ play noun


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the point at which something begins

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