- To rend is to tear something into pieces, to wrench something violently or to cause great emotional pain.
- When you rip up a piece of fabric into multiple pieces, this is an example of a time when you rend the fabric.
- When you yank money out of your friend's hands despite his protests, this is an example of a time when you rend the money.
- When you leave your girlfriend broken hearted after you dump her, this is an example of a time when you rend her emotions.
transitive verbrent, rending
- to tear, pull, or rip with violence: with from, off, away, etc.
- to tear, pull apart, rip up, or split with violence [a tree rent by lightning]: often used figuratively [a roar rends the air]
- to tear (one's clothing) to show grief, anguish, etc.
Origin of rendMiddle English renden ; from Old English rendan, akin to Old Frisian renda ; from Indo-European base an unverified form rendh-, to tear apart from source rind, Sanskrit randhram, fissure, split
verbrent rent also rend·ed, rend·ing, rends
- a. To tear or split apart or into pieces violently. See Synonyms at tear1.b. To tear (one's garments or hair) in anguish or rage.
- To pull away forcibly; wrest: rent the money from his hand.
- a. To pull, split, or divide: “Chip was rent between the impulse to laugh wildly and a bitterness that threatened hot tears” (Louis Auchincloss).b. To pierce or disturb with sound: a scream rent the silence.c. To cause pain or distress to: tales that rend the heart.
Origin of rendMiddle English renden, from Old English rendan.
(third-person singular simple present rends, present participle rending, simple past and past participle rent)
- To separate into parts with force or sudden violence; to tear asunder; to split; to burst
- Powder rends a rock in blasting.
- Lightning rends an oak.
- To part or tear off forcibly; to take away by force.
- (intransitive) To be rent or torn; to become parted; to separate; to split.
- Relationships may rend if tempers flare.
- Rending of garments for shiva is a Jewish tradition.
From Middle English renden, from Old English rendan (“to rend, tear, cut, lacerate, cut down”), from Proto-Germanic *hrandijaną (“to tear”), of uncertain origin. Believed by some to be the causitive of Proto-Germanic *hrindaną (“to push”), from Proto-Indo-European *ḱret-, *kret- (“to hit, beat”), in which case would relate it to Old English hrindan (“to thrust, push”). Cognate with Scots rent (“to rend, tear”), Old Frisian renda (“to tear”).