From Middle English sewen, seowen, sowen, from Old English sīwian, sēowian, sēowan (“to sew, mend, patch, knit together, link, unite”), from Proto-Germanic *siwjaną (“to sew”), from Proto-Indo-European *sīw- (“to sew”), *syuh₁-. Cognate with Scots sew (“to sew”), North Frisian saie, sei (“to sew”), Saterland Frisian säie (“to sew”), Danish sy, Polish szyć, Russian шить (šitʹ), Swedish sy, Latin suō, Sanskrit सीव्यति (sīvyati). Related to seam.
- (UK) IPA(key): /səʊ/
- (US) IPA(key): /soʊ/
Audio (US) (file)
- Rhymes: -əʊ
- Homophones: so, soh, sow (sense 2)
- (transitive) To use a needle to pass thread repeatedly through (pieces of fabric) in order to join them together.
- Balls were first made of grass or leaves held together by strings, and later of pieces of animal skin sewn together and stuffed with feathers or hay.
- (intransitive) To use a needle to pass thread repeatedly through pieces of fabric in order to join them together.
- (transitive) To enclose by sewing.
- to sew money into a bag
Related to sewer (“a drain”).
- (obsolete, transitive) To drain, as a pond, for taking the fish.
- (Can we find and add a quotation of Tusser to this entry?)
Part or all of this entry has been imported from the 1913 edition of Webster’s Dictionary, which is now free of copyright and hence in the public domain. The imported definitions may be significantly out of date, and any more recent senses may be completely missing.