Dictionary: SEV'ER-AL-IZE – SEX

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To distinguish. [Not in use.] – Bp. Hall.

SEV'ER-AL-LY, adv.

Separately; distinctly; apart from others. Call the men severally by name. I could not keep my eye steady on them severally so as to number them. – Newton. To be jointly end severally bound in a contract, is for each obligor to be liable to pay the whole demand, in case the other or others are not able.


A state of separation from the rest, or from all others. An estate in severalty, is that which the tenant holds in his own right, without being joined in interest with any other person. It is distinguished from joint-tenancy, coparcenery and common. – Blackstone.


Separation; the act of dividing or disuniting. The severance of a jointure is made by destroying the unity of interest. Thus when there are two joint-tenants for life, and the inheritance is purchased by or descends upon either, it is a severance. So also when two persons are joined in a writ, and one is nonsuited; in this case severance is permitted, and the other plaintif may proceed in the suit. So also in assize when two or more disseizees appear upon the writ, and not the other, severance is permitted. – Blackstone. Encyc.

SE'VERE, a. [Fr. from L. severus; It. and Sp. severo.]

  1. Rigid; harsh; not mild or indulgent; as, severe words; severe treatment; severe wrath. – Milton. Pope.
  2. Sharp; hard; rigorous. Let your zeal … be more severe against thyself than against others. – Taylor.
  3. Very strict; or sometimes perhaps, unreasonably strict or exact; giving no indulgence to faults or errors; as, severe government; severe criticism.
  4. Rigorous, perhaps cruel; as, severe punishment; severe justice.
  5. Grave; sober; sedate to an extreme; opposed to cheerful, gay, light, lively. Your looks must alter, as your subject does, / From kind to fierce, from wanton to severe. – Waller.
  6. Rigidly exact; strictly methodical; not lax or airy. I will not venture on so nice a subject with my severe style.
  7. Sharp; afflictive; distressing; violent; as, severe pain, anguish, torture, &c.
  8. Sharp; biting; extreme; as, severe cold.
  9. Close; concise; not luxuriant. The Latin, a most severe and compendious language. – Dryden.
  10. Exact; critical; nice; as, a severe test.

SEV'ER-ED, pp.

Parted by violence; disjoined.

SE-VERE-LY, adv.

  1. Harshly; sharply; as, to chide one severely.
  2. Strictly; rigorously; as, to judge one severely. To be or fondly or severely kind. – Savage.
  3. With extreme rigor; as, to punish severely.
  4. Painfully; afflictively; greatly; as, to be severely afflicted with the gout.
  5. Fiercely; ferociously. More formidable Hydra stands within, / Whose jaws with iron teeth severely grin. – Dryden.

SEV'ER-ING, ppr.

Parting by violence; disuniting.


A mineral found near St. Sever, in France occurring in small masses, white without luster, a little harder than lithomarge. – Phillips.

SE-VER'I-TY, n. [L. severitas.]

  1. Harshness; rigor; austerity; want of mildness or indulgence; as, the severity of a reprimand or reproof.
  2. Rigor; extreme strictness; as, severity of discipline or government.
  3. Excessive rigor; extreme degree or amount. Severity of penalties or punishments often defeats the object by exciting pity.
  4. Extremity; quality or power of distressing; as, the severity of pain or anguish.
  5. Extreme degree; as, the severity of cold or heat.
  6. Extreme coldness or inclemency; as, the severity of the winter.
  7. Harshness; cruel treatment; sharpness of punishment; as, severity practiced on prisoners of war.
  8. Exactness; rigor; niceness; as, the severity of a test.
  9. Strictness; rigid accuracy. Confining myself to the severity of truth. – Dryden.

SEV-O-CA'TION, n. [L. sevoco.]

A calling aside.


A fish, the Acipenser stellatus, of the Caspian sea. – Tooke. Pallas.

SEW, v.

To follow. [Not used. See Sue.] – Spenser.

SEW, v.i.

To practice sewing; to join things with stitches.

SEW, v.t.1 [pronounced so, and better written soe. Sax. siwian, suwian; Goth. siuyan; Sw. sy; Dan. syer; L. suo. This is probably a contracted word, and if its elements are Sb or Sf, it coincides with the Eth. ሰፈየ shafai, to sew; and the Ar. has إِشْفَي ashafai, an awl. See Class Sb, No. 85, 100. The Minion has siwawa, and the Gipsy siwena. But the elements are not obvious.]

To unite or fasten together with a needle and thread. They sewed fig leaves together, and made themselves aprons. – Gen. iii. To sew up, to inclose by sewing; to inclose in any thing sewed. Thou sewest up mine iniquity. – Job xiv. Sew me up the skirts of the gown. – Shak.

SEW, v.t.2 [L. sicco, to dry.]

To drain a pond for taking the fish. [Obs.]

SEW'ED, pp.

United by stitches.

SEW'EL, n.

Among huntsmen, something hung up to prevent deer from entering a place.

SEW'ER, n.1 [G. anzucht; perhaps from the root of suck, or L. sicco. But Elmes deduces the word from the old French asscour.]

A drain or passage to convey off water under ground; a subterraneous canal, particularly in cities; corruptly pronounced shoer or soer.

SEW'ER, n.2 [D. schaffer, from schaffen, to provide, to dish up; G. schaffner; Dan. skaffer; Sw. skaffare. See Shape.]

An officer who serves up a feast and arranges the dishes. [Obs.] Milton.

SEW'ER, n.3

One who sews, or uses the needle.

SEW'ING, ppr.

Joining with the needle or with stitches.


A term from the civil law, equivalent to easement.


A woman that sews or spins. [Obs.] – B. Johnson.

SEX, n. [Fr. sexe; Sp. sexo; It. sesso; L. sexus; qu. G. sieke, she, female; from L. seco, to divide.]

  1. The distinction between male and female; or that property or character by which an animal is male or female. The male sex is usually characterized by muscular strength, boldness and firmness. The female sex is characterized by softness, sensibility and modesty. In botany, the structure of plants which corresponds to sex in animals. The Linnæan method of botany is formed on the sexes in plants. – Milne.
  2. By way of emphasis, womankind; females. Unhappy sex! whose beauty is your snare. – Dryden. The sex, whose presence civilizes ours. – Cowper.