1. Naut. (a) The longitudinal upward curvature of the deck, gunwale, and lines of a vessel, as when viewed from the side. (b) The position of a vessel riding at single anchor and swinging clear of it.
2. A turn or change in a course.
Give the canoe a sheer and get nearer to the shore. --Cooper.
3. pl. Shears See Shear.
Sheer batten Shipbuilding, a long strip of wood to guide the carpenters in following the sheer plan.
Sheer boom, a boom slanting across a stream to direct floating logs to one side.
Sheer hulk. See Shear hulk, under Hulk.
Sheer plan, or Sheer draught Shipbuilding, a projection of the lines of a vessel on a vertical longitudinal plane passing through the middle line of the vessel.
Sheer pole Naut., an iron rod lashed to the shrouds just above the dead-eyes and parallel to the ratlines.
Sheer strake Shipbuilding, the strake under the gunwale on the top side. --Totten.
To break sheer Naut., to deviate from sheer, and risk fouling the anchor.
1. Bright; clear; pure; unmixed. “Sheer ale.”
Thou sheer, immaculate, and silver fountain. --Shak.
2. Very thin or transparent; -- applied to fabrics; as, sheer muslin.
3. Being only what it seems to be; obvious; simple; mere; downright; as, sheer folly; sheer nonsense. “A sheer impossibility.”
It is not a sheer advantage to have several strings to one's bow. --M. Arnold.
4. Stright up and down; vertical; prpendicular.
A sheer precipice of a thousand feet. --J. D. Hooker.
It was at least
Nine roods of sheer ascent. --Wordsworth.
Sheer, adv. Clean; quite; at once. [Obs.]
Sheer, v. t. To shear. [Obs.]
Sheer, v. i. [imp. & p. p. Sheered p. pr. & vb. n. Sheering.] To decline or deviate from the line of the proper course; to turn aside; to swerve; as, a ship sheers from her course; a horse sheers at a bicycle.
To sheer off, to turn or move aside to a distance; to move away.
To sheer up, to approach obliquely.
adj 1: complete and without restriction or qualification; sometimes
used informally as intensifiers; "absolute freedom";
"an absolute dimwit"; "a downright lie"; "out-and-out
mayhem"; "an out-and-out lie"; "a rank outsider";
"many right-down vices"; "got the job through sheer
persistence"; "sheer stupidity" [syn: absolute, downright,
out-and-out(a), rank(a), right-down, sheer(a)]
2: not mixed with extraneous elements; "plain water"; "sheer
wine"; "not an unmixed blessing" [syn: plain, unmingled,
3: very steep; having a prominent and almost vertical front; "a
bluff headland"; "where the bold chalk cliffs of England
rise"; "a sheer descent of rock" [syn: bluff, bold]
4: so thin as to transmit light; "a hat with a diaphanous
veil"; "filmy wings of a moth"; "gauzy clouds of dandelion
down"; "gossamer cobwebs"; "sheer silk stockings";
"transparent chiffon"; "vaporous silks" [syn: diaphanous,
filmy, gauzy, gossamer, see-through, transparent,
adv 1: straight up or down without a break [syn: perpendicularly]
2: directly; "he fell sheer into the water"
v 1: turn sharply; change direction abruptly; "The car cut to the
left at the intersection"; "The motorbike veered to the
right" [syn: swerve, curve, trend, veer, slue,
2: cause to sheer; "She sheered her car around the obstacle"