1

sharp

play
adjective \ ˈshärp \

Definition of sharp

1 :adapted to cutting or piercing: such as
a :having a thin keen edge or fine point
b :briskly or bitingly cold :nipping
  • a sharp wind
2 a :keen in intellect :quick-witted
b :keen in perception :acute
  • sharp sight
c :keen in attention :vigilant
  • keep a sharp lookout
d :keen in attention to one's own interest sometimes to the point of being unethical
  • a sharp trader
; also :corrupt, unethical
  • sharp business practices
3 :keen in spirit or action: such as
a :full of activity or energy :brisk
  • sharp blows
b :capable of acting or reacting strongly; especially :caustic
4 :severe, harsh: such as
a :inclined to or marked by irritability or anger
  • a sharp temper
b :causing intense mental or physical distress
  • a sharp pain
c :cutting in language or import
  • a sharp rebuke
5 :affecting the senses or sense organs intensely: such as
a (1) :having a strong odor or flavor
  • sharp cheese
(2) :acrid
b :having a strong piercing sound
c :having the effect of or involving a sudden brilliant display of light
  • a sharp flash
6 a :terminating in a point or edge
  • sharp features
b :involving an abrupt or marked change especially in direction
  • a sharp turn
c :clear in outline or detail :distinct
  • a sharp image
d :set forth with clarity and distinctness
  • sharp contrast
7 a of a tone :raised a half step in pitch
b :higher than the proper pitch
c :major, augmented used of an interval in music

sharply

adverb

sharpness

noun

Examples of sharp in a Sentence

  1. a sharp drop in temperature

  2. He took a sharp left turn.

  3. a sharp curve in the road

  4. Her cheerful mood stands in sharp contrast to her dreary surroundings.

Recent Examples of sharp from the Web

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

Origin and Etymology of sharp

Middle English, from Old English scearp; akin to Old High German scarf sharp and perhaps to Old English scrapian to scrape — more at scrape

Synonym Discussion of sharp

sharp, keen, acute mean having or showing alert competence and clear understanding. sharp implies quick perception, clever resourcefulness, or sometimes questionable trickiness.
    • sharp enough to spot a confidence game
keen suggests quickness, enthusiasm, and a penetrating mind.
    • a keen observer of the political scene
acute implies a power to penetrate and may suggest subtlety and sharpness of discrimination.
    • an acute sense of style

2

sharp

adverb

Definition of sharp

1 :in a sharp manner
2 :exactly
  • 1:15 sharp

Examples of sharp in a Sentence

  1. be there at four o'clock sharp

Recent Examples of sharp from the Web

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

First Known Use of sharp

before 12th century

sharp Synonyms


3

sharp

noun

Definition of sharp

:one that is sharp: such as
a :a sharp edge or point
b (1) :a musical note or tone one half step higher than a note or tone named
(2) :a character ♯ on a line or space of the musical staff indicating a pitch a half step higher than the degree would indicate without it
c :a needle with a small eye for sewing by hand
d :a real or self-proclaimed expert; also :sharper

Examples of sharp in a Sentence

  1. the computer sharp that the rest of the staff turns to whenever their PCs act up

Recent Examples of sharp from the Web

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

First Known Use of sharp

14th century


4

sharp

verb

Definition of sharp

transitive verb
:to raise (a musical tone) in pitch; especially :to raise in pitch by a half step
intransitive verb
:to sing or play above the proper pitch

First Known Use of sharp

1662


Sharp

play
biographical name \ ˈshärp \

Definition of Sharp

Phillip Allen 1944–     American biologist


SHARP Defined for English Language Learners

sharp

play
adjective

Definition of sharp for English Language Learners

  • : having a thin edge that is able to cut things or a fine point that is able to make a hole in things

  • : sudden and quick

  • : involving a sudden change in direction


sharp

adverb

Definition of sharp for English Language Learners

  • : above the correct musical pitch


sharp

noun

Definition of sharp for English Language Learners

  • : a musical note that is one semitone higher than a specified note; also : a written symbol ♯ that is placed before a note to show that it should be played a semitone higher


SHARP Defined for Kids

1

sharp

play
adjective \ ˈshärp \

Definition of sharp for Students

sharper; sharpest
1 :having a thin edge or fine point (as for cutting or piercing)
  • a sharp knife
2 :brisk and cold
  • a sharp wind
3 :very smart
  • a sharp student
4 :attentive 1
  • He kept a sharp watch.
5 :having very good ability to see or hear
  • You have sharp eyes.
6 :energetic, brisk
  • We kept up a sharp pace.
7 :showing anger or disapproval
  • a sharp reply
8 :causing distress :severe
  • a sharp pain
  • sharp criticism
9 :strongly affecting the senses
  • The workshop … had the sharp, warm scent of wood shavings and sawdust.
  • —Lloyd Alexander, Time Cat
10 :ending in a point or edge
  • a sharp mountain peak
11 :involving a sudden and quick change
  • a sharp drop in the temperature
  • a sharp turn
12 :clear in outline or detail :distinct
  • a sharp image
13 :raised in pitch by a half step
  • F sharp
14 :higher than true pitch
  • Her singing was slightly sharp.
15 :stylish
  • a sharp outfit

sharply

adverb

sharpness

noun

2

sharp

adverb

Definition of sharp for Students

1 :at an exact time
  • four o'clock sharp
2 :at a higher than true pitch
  • He sang sharp.

3

sharp

noun

Definition of sharp for Students

1 :a musical note or tone that is a half step higher than the note named
2 :a sign ♯ that tells that a note is to be made higher by a half step

Medical Dictionary

sharp

play
noun \ ˈshärp \

medical Definition of sharp

:a medical instrument (as a scalpel, lancet, or syringe needle) that is sharp or may produce sharp pieces by shattering
  • As I passed the hemostat, the needle clipped my glove and my skin … I then disposed of the sharp and tried to force bleeding.
  • The Journal of the American Medical Association4 Jan. 2012
usually used in plural
  • It is no longer legal to dispose of sharps in the regular trash, Health Director Jeanne M. Galloway said in announcing the new collection station.
  • —Angela CarboneThe Springfield (Massachusetts) Republican18 Oct. 2008


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