Severe Se*vere", a. [Compar. {Severer}; superl. {Severest}.] [L. severus; perhaps akin to Gr. ??? awe, ??? revered, holy, solemn, Goth. swikns innocent, chaste: cf. F. s['e]v[`e]re. Cf. {Asseverate}, {Persevere}.] 1. Serious in feeling or manner; sedate; grave; austere; not light, lively, or cheerful. [1913 Webster]

Your looks alter, as your subject does, From kind to fierce, from wanton to severe. --Waller. [1913 Webster]

2. Very strict in judgment, discipline, or government; harsh; not mild or indulgent; rigorous; as, severe criticism; severe punishment. ``Custody severe.'' --Milton. [1913 Webster]

Come! you are too severe a moraler. --Shak. [1913 Webster]

Let your zeal, if it must be expressed in anger, be always more severe against thyself than against others. --Jer. Taylor. [1913 Webster]

3. Rigidly methodical, or adherent to rule or principle; exactly conformed to a standard; not allowing or employing unneccessary ornament, amplification, etc.; strict; -- said of style, argument, etc. ``Restrained by reason and severe principles.'' --Jer. Taylor. [1913 Webster]

The Latin, a most severe and compendious language. --Dryden. [1913 Webster]

4. Sharp; afflictive; distressing; violent; extreme; as, severe pain, anguish, fortune; severe cold. [1913 Webster]

5. Difficult to be endured; exact; critical; rigorous; as, a severe test. [1913 Webster]

Syn: Strict; grave; austere; stern; morose; rigid; exact; rigorous; hard; rough; harsh; censorious; tart; acrimonious; sarcastic; satirical; cutting; biting; keen; bitter; cruel. See {Strict}. [1913 Webster] -- {Se*vere"ly}, adv. -- {Se*vere"ness}, n. [1913 Webster]

The Collaborative International Dictionary of English. 2000.


Look at other dictionaries:

  • sévère — [ sevɛr ] adj. • fin XIIe; lat. severus 1 ♦ (Personnes) Qui n admet pas qu on manque à la règle; prompt à punir ou à blâmer. ⇒ dur, exigeant, strict, fam. vache. Des parents sévères. Le juge s est montré très sévère. ⇒ impitoyable. « elle était… …   Encyclopédie Universelle

  • Severe — Sévère (chanteuse) Sévère est une rappeuse française d origine congolaise, née le 10 février 1982 à Strasbourg. Sommaire 1 Son d la rue Meufia 2 Parcours 3 Notes …   Wikipédia en Français

  • severe — severe, stern, austere, ascetic can all mean given to or characterized by strict discipline and firm restraint. Severe is applicable to persons and their looks, acts, thoughts, and utterances or to things (as laws, penalties, judgments, and… …   New Dictionary of Synonyms

  • severe — SEVERE. adj. de t. g. Rigide, qui exige une extreme regularité, & pardonne peu ou point. Un Prince severe. Juge severe. severe censeur. ce pere est trop severe envers ses enfans. Il se dit aussi des choses. Vertu severe. punition severe. il fit… …   Dictionnaire de l'Académie française

  • severe — [sə vir′] adj. severer, severest [< MFr < OFr < L severus, prob. < se , apart (see SECEDE) + IE base * wer , (to be) friendly > OE wær, faith, pledge, bond (of friendship)] 1. harsh, strict, or highly critical, as in treatment;… …   English World dictionary

  • severe — I adjective acrimonious, afflictive, agonizing, astringent, austere, austerus, bearish, brutal, censorious, churlish, coercive, cold, condemnatory, critical, cruel, despotic, difficult, domineering, dour, drastic, durus, exacting, excruciating,… …   Law dictionary

  • Sévère — Ancien nom de baptême correspondant au latin Severus (= sérieux, sévère), popularisé par un empereur romain, puis par divers saints …   Noms de famille

  • severe — 1540s, from Fr. sévère, from L. severus (see SEVERITY (Cf. severity)) …   Etymology dictionary

  • severe — [adj1] uncompromising, stern astringent, austere, biting, caustic, close, cold, cruel, cutting, disapproving, dour, earnest, firm, flinty, forbidding, grave, grim, hard, hardnosed*, harsh, inconsiderate, inexorable, inflexible, iron handed,… …   New thesaurus

  • severe — ► ADJECTIVE 1) (of something bad, undesirable, or difficult) very great; intense. 2) strict or harsh. 3) very plain in style or appearance. DERIVATIVES severely adverb severity noun. ORIGIN Latin severus …   English terms dictionary

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