Whet Whet, v. t. [imp. & p. p. {Whetted}; p. pr. & vb. n. {Whetting}.] [AS. hwettan; akin to D. wetten, G. wetzen, OHG. wezzen, Icel. hvetja, Sw. v["a]ttja, and AS. hw[ae]t vigorous, brave, OS. hwat, OHG. waz, was, sharp, Icel. hvatr, bold, active, Sw. hvass sharp, Dan. hvas, Goth. hwassaba sharply, and probably to Skr. cud to impel, urge on.] [1913 Webster] 1. To rub or on with some substance, as a piece of stone, for the purpose of sharpening; to sharpen by attrition; as, to whet a knife. [1913 Webster]

The mower whets his scythe. --Milton. [1913 Webster]

Here roams the wolf, the eagle whets his beak. --Byron. [1913 Webster]

2. To make sharp, keen, or eager; to excite; to stimulate; as, to whet the appetite or the courage. [1913 Webster]

Since Cassius first did whet me against C[ae]sar, I have not slept. --Shak. [1913 Webster]

{To whet on}, {To whet forward}, to urge on or forward; to instigate. --Shak. [1913 Webster]

The Collaborative International Dictionary of English. 2000.


Look at other dictionaries:

  • whet — [ wet, hwet ] verb transitive if you whet a blade, you make it sharper: SHARPEN whet your appetite (for something) to increase the feeling that you want to have or do a particular thing: a TV program that will whet people s appetite for travel …   Usage of the words and phrases in modern English

  • Whet — Whet, n. [1913 Webster] 1. The act of whetting. [1913 Webster] 2. That which whets or sharpens; esp., an appetizer. Sips, drams, and whets. Spectator. [1913 Webster] {Whet slate} (Min.), a variety of slate used for sharpening cutting instruments; …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • whet — whet; whet·ten; whet·ter; …   English syllables

  • whet — [hwet, wet] vt. whetted, whetting [ME whetten < OE hwettan, to make keen < hwæt, sharp, keen, bold < IE base * kwed , to pierce, sharpen, whet > prob. L (tri)quetrus, (three )cornered] 1. to sharpen by rubbing or grinding (the edge of …   English World dictionary

  • whet — [wet] v past tense and past participle whetted present participle whetting [T] [: Old English; Origin: hwettan] 1.) whet sb s appetite (for sth) if an experience whets your appetite for something, it increases your desire for it ▪ The view from… …   Dictionary of contemporary English

  • whet — [v1] make sharp edge, file, finish, grind, hone, sharpen, strop; concepts 137,250 Ant. blunt, dull whet [v2] arouse, excite animate, awaken, challenge, enhance, incite, increase, kindle, pique, provoke, quicken, rally, rouse, stimulate, stir,… …   New thesaurus

  • whet — index stimulate, stimulus Burton s Legal Thesaurus. William C. Burton. 2006 …   Law dictionary

  • whet — (v.) O.E. hwettan, from P.Gmc. *khwatjanan (Cf. O.N. hvetja to sharpen, encourage, M.L.G., M.Du. wetten, O.H.G. wezzan, Ger. wetzen to sharpen, Goth. ga hvatjan to sharpen, incite ), from an adjective represented by O.E. hwæt brave, bold, O.S.… …   Etymology dictionary

  • whet — ► VERB (whetted, whetting) 1) sharpen the blade of (a tool or weapon). 2) excite or stimulate (someone s desire, interest, or appetite). ORIGIN Old English …   English terms dictionary

  • whet — UK [wet] / US / US [hwet] verb [transitive] Word forms whet : present tense I/you/we/they whet he/she/it whets present participle whetting past tense whetted past participle whetted if you whet a blade, you make it sharper using a whetstone •… …   English dictionary

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