Usage: often attributive
Etymology: Middle English bere, from Old English bera; akin to Old English brūn brown — more at brown
Date: before 12th century
1. (or pl bear) any of a family (Ursidae of the order Carnivora) of large heavy mammals of America and Eurasia that have long shaggy hair, rudimentary tails, and plantigrade feet and feed largely on fruit, plant matter, and insects as well as on flesh
2. a surly, uncouth, burly, or shambling person <a tall, friendly bear of a man> 3. [probably from the proverb about selling the bearskin before catching the bear] one that sells securities or commodities in expectation of a price decline — compare bull 4. something difficult to do or deal with <the oven is a bear to clean> • bearlike adjective II. verb (bore; borne; also born; bearing) Etymology: Middle English beren to carry, bring forth, from Old English beran; akin to Old High German beran to carry, Latin ferre, Greek pherein Date: before 12th century transitive verb 1. a. to move while holding up and supporting b. to be equipped or furnished with c. behave, conduct <bearing himself well> d. to have as a feature or characteristic <bears a likeness to her grandmother> e. to give as testimony <bear false witness> f. to have as an identification <bore the name of John> g. to hold in the mind or emotions <bear malice> h. disseminate i. lead, escort j. render, give 2. a. to give birth to b. to produce as yield c. (1) to permit growth of (2) contain <oil-bearing shale> 3. a. to support the weight of ; sustain b. to accept or allow oneself to be subjected to especially without giving way <couldn't bear the pain> <I can't bear seeing you cry> c. to call for as suitable or essential <it bears watching> d. to hold above, on top, or aloft e. to admit of ; allow f. assume, accept 4. thrust, press intransitive verb 1. to produce fruit ; yield 2. a. to force one's way b. to extend in a direction indicated or implied c. to be situated ; lie d. to become directed e. to go or incline in an indicated direction 3. to support a weight or strain — often used with up 4. a. to exert influence or force b. apply, pertain — often used with on or upon <facts bearing on the question> Synonyms: bear, suffer, endure, abide, tolerate, stand mean to put up with something trying or painful. bear usually implies the power to sustain without flinching or breaking <forced to bear a tragic loss>. suffer often suggests acceptance or passivity rather than courage or patience in bearing <suffering many insults>. endure implies continuing firm or resolute through trials and difficulties <endured years of rejection>. abide suggests acceptance without resistance or protest <cannot abide their rudeness>. tolerate suggests overcoming or successfully controlling an impulse to resist, avoid, or resent something injurious or distasteful <refused to tolerate such treatment>. stand emphasizes even more strongly the ability to bear without discomposure or flinching <unable to stand teasing>.
New Collegiate Dictionary. 2001.