Tear

I. tear 1 [tear tears tore tearing torn] verb, noun BrE [teə(r)]
NAmE [ter]
see also tear 2
verb (tore BrE [tɔː(r)]
; NAmE [tɔːr]
torn BrE [tɔːn]
; NAmE [tɔːrn]
) DAMAGE
1. transitive, intransitive to damage sth by pulling it apart or into pieces or by cutting it on sth sharp; to become damaged in this way
Syn: rip
~ (sth) (+ adv./prep.) I tore my jeans on the fence.
I tore a hole in my jeans.
He tore the letter in two.
a torn handkerchief
Careful— the fabric tears very easily.
~ sth + adj. I tore the package open.
I tore open the package.
2. transitive ~ sth in sth to make a hole in sth by force
Syn: rip
The blast tore a hole in the wall.  
REMOVE FROM STH/SB
3. transitive ~ sth + adv./prep. to remove sth from sth else by pulling it roughly or violently
Syn: rip
The storm nearly tore the roof off.
I tore another sheet from the pad.
He tore his clothes off (= took them off quickly and carelessly) and dived into the lake.
4. transitive to pull yourself/sb away by force from sb/sth that is holding you or them
~ yourself/sb from sb/sth She tore herself from his grasp.
~ yourself/sb + adj. He tore himself free.  
INJURE MUSCLE
5. transitive ~ sth to injure a muscle, etc. by stretching it too much
a torn ligament
She tore a calf muscle playing squash.  
MOVE QUICKLY
6. intransitive + adv./prep. to move somewhere very quickly or in an excited way
He tore off down the street.
A truck tore past the gates.  
-TORN
7. (in adjectives) very badly affected or damaged by sth
to bring peace to a strife-torn country
a strike-torn industry
see also war-torn
more at tear/rip the heart out of sth at heart, tear/rip sb limb from limb at limb, break/cut/tear loose from sb/sth at loose adj., pick/pull/tear sb to pieces/shreds at piece n., pick/pull/tear sb to pieces/shreds at shred n.
Verb forms:
Word Origin:
Old English teran Germanic Dutch teren German zehren Indo-European Greek derein ‘flay’
Example Bank:
He threatened to tear me limb from limb.
His clothes were badly torn.
One error and he would have been torn loose and hurled overboard by the squalling wind.
Several pages had been torn out of the book.
She tore her skirt on a nail.
She tore herself free.
She tore the label off the suitcase.
She tore the letter open.
She tore the piece of paper in half.
The critics tore his last film to shreds.
The fabric snagged and tore at the seams.
A dog was tearing along the road beside the truck.
He tore his clothes off and dived into the lake.
He tore the package open.
His jacket had been torn to shreds on the barbed wire.
I felt like tearing my hair out in frustration.
I tore a hole in my shirt.
Our posters were torn down as quickly as we could put them up.
Racial strife is tearing the country apart.
She tore a page from her notebook.
She's torn a ligament in her right hand.
The girls looked at each other and tore off towards the house.
Idioms: tear a strip off somebody tear at your heart tear somebody apart/to shreds/to bits tear somebody off a strip tear your hair tear your heart out tearing hurry that's torn it torn
Derived: tear at something tear into somebody tear somebody up tear something apart tear something away tear something down tear something up tear yourself away
noun
a hole that has been made in sth by tearing
This sheet has a tear in it.
see wear and tear at wear n.
Word Origin:
Old English teran Germanic Dutch teren German zehren Indo-European Greek derein ‘flay’
II. tear 2 [tear tears tore tearing torn] BrE [tɪə(r)]
NAmE [tɪr]
noun usually plural
see also tear 1 a drop of liquid that comes out of your eye when you cry
A tear rolled down his face.
She left the room in tears (= crying).
He suddenly burst into tears (= began to cry).
As he listened to the music, his eyes filled with tears.
Their story will move you to tears (= make you cry).
They reduced her to tears (= made her cry, especially by being cruel or unkind).
Ann wiped a tear from her eye.
The memory brought a tear to her eye (= made her cry).
Most of the audience was on the verge of tears.
I was close to tears as I told them the news.
Desperately she fought back the tears (= tried not to cry).
to shed tears of happiness
tears of pain, joy, etc.
The tears welled up in his eyes.
see blood, sweat and tears at blood n., bored to death/tears at bored, crocodile tears at crocodile, end in tears at end v.
Derived Word: teary
Word Origin:
Old English tēar Germanic German Zähre Indo-European Old Latin dacruma Latin lacrima Greek dakru
Example Bank:
He came to me in tears.
He could never read the letter without tears coming to his eyes.
He had to fight back tears of frustration.
He shed no tears for his lost youth.
He turned away to hide his tears.
Her cheeks were wet with tears.
Her eyes were blinded by scalding tears.
Her tears brimmed over and fell on her cheek.
Her tears spilled over her cheeks.
His eyes filled with sudden tears.
His eyes were bright with unshed tears.
His father's angry shouting reduced the little boy to tears.
I couldn't stop the tears.
I picked the little girl up and helped dry her tears.
I saw it all through a mist of tears.
I wiped a stray tear from my eye.
I won't shed any tears when Frank retires.
It brings tears to your eyes to see the children having such fun.
It turned out to be a lot of tears over nothing.
More than once I came near to tears.
She broke down in tears in court.
She felt tears pricking her eyelids.
She ran out of the room, tears streaming from her eyes.
She tried to smile through her tears.
She wept silent tears when she heard his name.
Tears blurred his vision.
Tears stood in Oliver's eyes.
Tears streaked her face.
There are times when suffering may be too deep for tears.
There were angry tears in Lily's eyes.
They weep crocodile tears for the poor and disadvantaged but are basically happy with things as they are.
They weep crocodile tears for the poor, but do nothing to help.
We were in floods of tears at the end of the film.
tears of happiness
A tear rolled down his face.
Desperately she fought back the tears.
He suddenly burst into tears.
I was close to tears as I told them the news.
Most of the audience were on the verge of tears.
She left the room in tears.
The memory brought a tear to her eye.
Their story will move you to tears
They reduced her to tears.

WordNet Dictionary:
I
noun
1. a drop of the clear salty saline solution secreted by the lacrimal glands
- his story brought tears to her eyes
Syn: teardrop
2. an opening made forcibly as by pulling apart
- there was a rip in his pants
- she had snags in her stockings
Syn: rip, rent, snag, split
3. an occasion for excessive eating or drinking
- they went on a bust that lasted three days
Syn: bust, binge, bout
4. the act of tearing
- he took the manuscript in both hands and gave it a mighty tear
II
verb
1. separate or cause to separate abruptly
- The rope snapped
- tear the paper
Syn: rupture, snap, bust
- They tear the sheets
2. to separate or be separated by force
- planks were in danger of being torn from the crossbars
3. move quickly and violently
- The car tore down the street
- He came charging into my office
Syn: shoot, shoot down, charge, buck
4. strip of feathers
- pull a chicken
- pluck the capon
Syn: pluck, pull, deplume, deplumate, displume
5. fill with tears or shed tears
- Her eyes were tearing
- The critics panned the performance
Syn: pan, trash
- Sam and Sue tear apart the movie

Webster's 1913 Dictionary:
n.1.(Physiol.) A drop of the limpid, saline fluid secreted, normally in small amount, by the lachrymal gland, and diffused between the eye and the eyelids to moisten the parts and facilitate their motion. Ordinarily the secretion passes through the lachrymal duct into the nose, but when it is increased by emotion or other causes, it overflows the lids.
And yet for thee ne wept she never a tear.
2.Something in the form of a transparent drop of fluid matter; also, a solid, transparent, tear-shaped drop, as of some balsams or resins.
Let Araby extol her happy coast,
Her fragrant flowers, her trees with precious tears.
3.That which causes or accompanies tears; a lament; a dirge.
4.(Glass Manuf.) A partially vitrified bit of clay in glass.
Tears of St. Lawrence
the Perseid shower of meteors, seen every year on or about the eve of St. Lawrence, August 9th.
Tears of wine
drops which form and roll down a glass above the surface of strong wine. The phenomenon is due to the evaporation of alcohol from the surface layer, which, becoming more watery, increases in surface tension and creeps up the sides until its weight causes it to break.
v. t.1.To separate by violence; to pull apart by force; to rend; to lacerate; as, to tear cloth; to tear a garment; to tear the skin or flesh.
[imp. Tore (tōr), ((Obs. Tare) (târ); p. p. Torn (tōrn); p. pr. & vb. n. Tearing.]
Tear him to pieces; he's a conspirator.
2.Hence, to divide by violent measures; to disrupt; to rend; as, a party or government torn by factions.
3.To rend away; to force away; to remove by force; to sunder; as, a child torn from its home.
The hand of fate
Hath torn thee from me.
4.To pull with violence; as, to tear the hair.
5.To move violently; to agitate.
To tear a cat
to rant violently; to rave; - especially applied to theatrical ranting.
To tear down
to demolish violently; to pull or pluck down.
To tear off
to pull off by violence; to strip.
To tear out
to pull or draw out by violence; as, to tear out the eyes.
To tear up
to rip up; to remove from a fixed state by violence; as, to tear up a floor; to tear up the foundation of government or order.
v. i.1.To divide or separate on being pulled; to be rent; as, this cloth tears easily.
2.To move and act with turbulent violence; to rush with violence; hence, to rage; to rave.
n.1.The act of tearing, or the state of being torn; a rent; a fissure.
Wear and tear
See under Wear, n.

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