(comparative sheerer or more sheer, superlative sheerest or most sheer)
- (textiles) Very thin or transparent.
- Her light, sheer dress caught everyone's attention.
- Thou sheer, immaculate, and silver fountain.
- Being only what it seems to be; mere.
- I think it is sheer genius to invent such a thing.
- This poem is sheer nonsense.
- Very steep; almost vertical or perpendicular.
- It was a sheer drop of 180 feet.
- Used to emphasize the amount or degree of something.
- Through technological wizardry and sheer audacity, Google has shown how we can transform the intellectual riches of our libraries [...] .
(comparative more sheer, superlative most sheer)
- (archaic) clean; quite; at once.
From Middle English shere, scheere, schere, skere, from Old English *scÇ£re; merged with Middle English shire, schire, schyre, shir, from Old English scÄ«r (“clear, bright; brilliant, gleaming, shining, splendid, resplendent; pure") and Old Norse skÃrr (“pure, bright, clear") , both from Proto-Germanic *skÄ«riz (“pure, sheer") and *skairiz, from Proto-Indo-European *sá¸±Ä“y- (“luster, gloss, shadow"). Cognate with Danish skÃ¦r, German schier (“sheer"), Dutch schier (“almost"), Gothic ðƒðŒºðŒ´ðŒ¹ð‚ðƒ (skeirs, “clear, lucid"). Outside Germanic, cognate to Albanian hirrÃ« (“whey, serum").
(third-person singular simple present sheers, present participle sheering, simple past and past participle sheered)
- (chiefly nautical) To swerve from a course.
- A horse sheers at a bicycle.
Perhaps from Dutch scheren (“to move aside, skim"); see also shear.