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See also: Spear



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From Middle English spere, sperre, spear, from Old English spere, from Proto-Germanic *speru (compare West Frisian spear, Dutch speer, German Speer, Old Norse spjǫr), related to *sparrô (compare Middle Dutch sparre (rafter), Old Norse sparri (spar, rafter), sperra (rafter, beam)), from Proto-Indo-European *sperH- (compare Latin sparus (short spear), Albanian ferrë (thorn, thornbush)). See park.



spear (plural spears)

  1. A long stick with a sharp tip used as a weapon for throwing or thrusting, or anything used to make a thrusting motion.
  2. (now chiefly historical) A soldier armed with such a weapon; a spearman.
    (Can we find and add a quotation of Sir Walter Scott to this entry?)
    • 2011, Thomas Penn, Winter King, Penguin 2012, p. 187:
      Two of the four spears came directly from Lady Margaret's staff. One was her great-nephew Maurice St John […].
  3. A lance with barbed prongs, used by fishermen to retrieve fish.
  4. (ice hockey) An illegal maneuver using the end of a hockey stick to strike into another hockey player.
  5. (wrestling) In professional wrestling, a running tackle in which the wrestler's shoulder is driven into the opponent's midsection.
  6. A shoot, as of grass; a spire.
  7. The feather of a horse.
  8. The rod to which the bucket, or plunger, of a pump is attached; a pump rod.
  9. A long, thin strip from a vegetable.
    asparagus and broccoli spears

Derived termsEdit


The translations below need to be checked and inserted above into the appropriate translation tables, removing any numbers. Numbers do not necessarily match those in definitions. See instructions at Wiktionary:Entry layout#Translations.

See alsoEdit


spear (third-person singular simple present spears, present participle spearing, simple past and past participle speared)

  1. To penetrate or strike with, or as if with, any long narrow object. To make a thrusting motion that catches an object on the tip of a long device.
  2. (intransitive) To shoot into a long stem, as some plants do.
    (Can we find and add a quotation of Mortimer to this entry?)



spear (comparative more spear, superlative most spear)

  1. Male
    a spear counterpart
    • 2019 episode 1 A Very English Scandal
      When I was young, I was so desperate I'd go looking on the spear side.
  2. Pertaining to male family members
    the spear side of the family



Middle EnglishEdit



  1. Alternative form of spere (spear)

West FrisianEdit


From Old Frisian spere, spiri, from Proto-Germanic *speru.


spear c (plural spearen, diminutive spearke)

  1. spear

Further readingEdit

  • spear”, in Wurdboek fan de Fryske taal (in Dutch), 2011