Dictionary: SHAT'TERS – SHEAR-ED

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SHAT'TERS, n. [I believe used only in the plural.]

The fragments of any thing forcibly rent or broken; used chiefly or solely in the phrases, to break or rend into shatters. – Swift.


Brittle; easily falling into many pieces; not compact; loose of texture; as, shattery spar. – Woodward.

SHAVE, n. [Sw. skaf; G. schabe; Sax. scafa, sceafa; D. schaaf, a plane.]

An instrument with a long blade and a handle at each end for shaving hoops, &c.; called also a drawing knife.

SHAVE, v.t. [pret. shaved; pp. shaved or shaven. Sax. sceafan, scafan; D. schaaven; G. schaben; Dan. skaver; Sw. skafva.]

  1. To cut or pare off something from the surface of a body by a razor or other edged instrument, by rubbing, scraping or drawing the instrument along the surface; as, to shave the chin and cheeks; to shave the head of its hair. He shall shave his head in the day of his cleansing. – Num. vi.
  2. To shave off, to cut off. Neither shall they shave off the corner of their beard. – Lev. xxi.
  3. To pare close. The bending scythe / Shaves all the surface of the waving green. – Gay.
  4. To cut off thin slices; or to cut in thin slices. – Bacon.
  5. To skim along the surface or near it; to sweep along. He shaves with level wing the deep. – Milton.
  6. To strip; to oppress by extortion; to fleece.
  7. To make smooth by paring or cutting off slices; as, to shave hoops or staves. To shave a note, to purchase it at a great discount; a discount much beyond the legal rate of interest. [A low phrase.]

SHAV-ED, pp.

Pared; made smooth with a razor or other cutting instrument; fleeced.


A plant of the genus Equisetum.


A man shaved; a friar or religious; in contempt. – Spenser.

SHAV-ER, n.1

  1. One that shaves or whose occupation is to shave.
  2. One that is close in bargains or a sharp dealer. This Lewis is a cunning shaver. – Swift.
  3. One that fleeces; a pillager; a plunderer. By these shavers the Turks were stripped of all they had. – Knolles.

SHAV-ER, n.2 [Gypsy, tschabe, or tschawo, a boy; schawo or tschawo, a son; Ar. شَابٌ, a youth, from شَبَّ shabba, to grow up, to excite.]

A boy or young man. This word is still in common use in New England. It must be numbered among our original words.


  1. The act of paring the surface.
  2. A thin slice pared off with a shave, a knife, a plane or other cutting instrument. – Mortimer.

SHAV-ING, ppr.

Paring the surface with a razor or other sharp instrument; making smooth by paring; fleecing.

SHAW, n. [Sax. scua, scuwa; Sw. skugga; Dan. skove, a thicket, and skygge, a shade.]

A thicket; a small wood. [Local in England. In America not used.]

SHAW'-FOWL, n. [shaw and fowl.]

The representation or image of a fowl made by fowlers to shoot at. – Johnson.


A cloth of wool, cotton, silk or hair, used by females as a loose covering for the neck and shoulders. Shawls are of various sizes from that of a handkerchief to that of a counterpane. Shawls were originally manufactured in the heart of India from the fine silky wool of the Thibet sheep, and the best shawls now come from Cashmere; but they are also manufactured in Europe. The largest kinds are used in train-dresses and for long scarfs. – Encyc.

SHAWM, n. [G. schalmeie, from schallen, to sound.]

A hautboy or cornet; written also Shalm, but not in use. – Com. Prayer.

SHE, pron. [pronoun personal of the feminine gender. Sax. seo; Goth. si; D. zy; G. sie. The Danes and Swedes use for he and she, the word from which the English has hen; Dan. han, he, the male; hun, she, the female; hane, a cock; Sw. han, he; hanne, a cock; hon, hennes, henne, she. This is the root of Henry. She is perhaps the Heb. אשה, a woman or wife, In the Saxon, seo is used as an adjective, and may be rendered the or a. It is also used as a relative, answering to who, L. quæ. It is also used for he and that. In English, she has no variation, and is used only in the nominative case. In the oblique cases, we use hers and her, a distinct word.]

  1. A pronoun which is the substitute for the name of a female, and of the feminine gender; the word which refers to a female mentioned in the preceding or following part of a sentence or discourse. Then Sarah denied, saying, I laughed not; for she was afraid. – Gen. xviii.
  2. She is sometimes used as a noun for woman or female, and in the plural; but in contempt or in ludicrous language. Lady, you are the cruell'st she alive. – Shak. The shes of Italy shall not betray / My interest. – Shak.
  3. She is used also in composition for female, representing sex; as, a she-bear; a she-cat.

SHEAD-ING, n. [G. scheiden, Sax. sceadan, to divide.]

In the Isle of Man, a riding, tithing or division, in which there is a coroner or chief constable. The isle is divided into six sheadings. – Encyc.

SHEAF, n. [plur. Sheaves. Sax. sceaf; D. schoof. It appears to be connected with the D. schuiveni, schoof, to shove, Sax. scufan. The sense then is a mass or collection driven or pressed together. But the Welsh has ysgub, a sheaf and a besom, whence ysgubaw, to sweep, L. scopa, scopo, and said to be from cub, what is put together, a cube. If these are of one family, as I suspect, the root is in Class Gb, and the sense to collect or press together.]

  1. A quality of the stalks of wheat, rye, oats or barley bound together; a bundle of stalks or straw. The reaper fills his greedy hands, / And binds the golden sheaves in brittle bands. – Dryden.
  2. Any bundle or collection; as, a sheaf of arrows. – Dryden.

SHEAF, v.t.

To collect and bind; to make sheaves. – Shak.


to shell, not used. – Shak.

SHEAR, v.i.

To deviate. [See Sheer.]

SHEAR, v.t. [pret. sheared; pp. sheared or shorn. The old pret. shore is entirely obsolete. Sax. scearan, scyran, sciran, to shear, to divide, whence share and shire; G. scheren, to shear or shave, and to vex, to rail, to jeer; schier dich weg, get you gone; schier dich aus dem wege, move out of the way; D. scheeren, to shave, shear, banter, stretch, warp; de geck scheeren, to play the fool; zig weg scheeren, to shear off; Dan. skierer, to cut, carve, saw, hew; skierts, a jest, jeer, banter; skiertser, to sport, mock, jeer; Sw. skiära, to reap, to mow, to cut off, to cleanse, to rinse; Sans. schaura or chaura, to shave; W. ysgar, a part, a share; ysgariaw, to separate. The Greek has ξυραω, to shave, and κειρω, to shave, shear, cut off or lay waste. The primary sense is to separate or force off in general; but a prominent signification is to separate by rubbing, as in scouring, or as in shaving, cutting close to the surface. Hence the sense of jeering, as we say, to give one the rub. See Scour, and Class Gr, No. 5, 8.]

  1. To cut or clip something from the surface with an instrument of two blades; to separate any thing from the surface by shears, scissors or a like instrument; as, to shear sheep; to shear cloth. It is appropriately used for the cutting of wool from sheep or their skins, and for clipping the nap from cloth, but may be applied to other things; as, a horse shears the ground in feeding much closer than an ox.
  2. To separate by shears; as, to shear a fleece.
  3. To reap. [Not in use.] Scotish. – Gower.

SHEAR-BILL, n. [shear and bill.]

A fowl, the black skimmer or cut-water, [Rhyncops nigra, of the Antilles.] Encyc.


A shard. [See Shard.]


Clipped; deprived of wool, hair or nap.