Severities
Severity Se*ver"i*ty, n.; pl. {Severities}. [L. severitas: cf. F. s['e]v['e]rit['e].] The quality or state of being severe. Specifically: [1913 Webster] (a) Gravity or austerity; extreme strictness; rigor; harshness; as, the severity of a reprimand or a reproof; severity of discipline or government; severity of penalties. ``Strict age, and sour severity.'' --Milton. [1913 Webster] (b) The quality or power of distressing or paining; extreme degree; extremity; intensity; inclemency; as, the severity of pain or anguish; the severity of cold or heat; the severity of the winter. [1913 Webster] (c) Harshness; cruel treatment; sharpness of punishment; as, severity practiced on prisoners of war. [1913 Webster] (d) Exactness; rigorousness; strictness; as, the severity of a test. [1913 Webster]

Confining myself to the severity of truth. --Dryden. [1913 Webster]


The Collaborative International Dictionary of English. 2000.

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