What does fear mean?

Definitions for fearfɪər

Here are all the possible meanings and translations of the word fear.

Princeton's WordNet

  1. fear, fearfulness, fright(noun)

    an emotion experienced in anticipation of some specific pain or danger (usually accompanied by a desire to flee or fight)

  2. concern, care, fear(noun)

    an anxious feeling

    "care had aged him"; "they hushed it up out of fear of public reaction"

  3. fear, reverence, awe, veneration(verb)

    a feeling of profound respect for someone or something

    "the fear of God"; "the Chinese reverence for the dead"; "the French treat food with gentle reverence"; "his respect for the law bordered on veneration"

  4. fear(verb)

    be afraid or feel anxious or apprehensive about a possible or probable situation or event

    "I fear she might get aggressive"

  5. fear, dread(verb)

    be afraid or scared of; be frightened of

    "I fear the winters in Moscow"; "We should not fear the Communists!"

  6. fear(verb)

    be sorry; used to introduce an unpleasant statement

    "I fear I won't make it to your wedding party"

  7. fear(verb)

    be uneasy or apprehensive about

    "I fear the results of the final exams"

  8. reverence, fear, revere, venerate(verb)

    regard with feelings of respect and reverence; consider hallowed or exalted or be in awe of

    "Fear God as your father"; "We venerate genius"

Webster Dictionary

  1. Fear(noun)

    a variant of Fere, a mate, a companion

  2. Fear(noun)

    a painful emotion or passion excited by the expectation of evil, or the apprehension of impending danger; apprehension; anxiety; solicitude; alarm; dread

  3. Fear(noun)

    apprehension of incurring, or solicitude to avoid, God's wrath; the trembling and awful reverence felt toward the Supreme Belng

  4. Fear(noun)

    respectful reverence for men of authority or worth

  5. Fear(noun)

    that which causes, or which is the object of, apprehension or alarm; source or occasion of terror; danger; dreadfulness

  6. Fear(noun)

    to feel a painful apprehension of; to be afraid of; to consider or expect with emotion of alarm or solicitude

  7. Fear(noun)

    to have a reverential awe of; to solicitous to avoid the displeasure of

  8. Fear(noun)

    to be anxious or solicitous for

  9. Fear(noun)

    to suspect; to doubt

  10. Fear(noun)

    to affright; to terrify; to drive away or prevent approach of by fear

  11. Fear(verb)

    to be in apprehension of evil; to be afraid; to feel anxiety on account of some expected evil

  12. Origin: [OE. fer, feer, fere, AS. fr a coming suddenly upon, fear, danger; akin to D. vaar, OHG. fra danger, G. gefahr, Icel. fr harm, mischief, plague, and to E. fare, peril. See Fare.]


  1. Fear

    Fear is an emotion induced by a perceived threat which causes entities to quickly pull far away from it and usually hide. It is a basic survival mechanism occurring in response to a specific stimulus, such as pain or the threat of danger. In short, fear is the ability to recognize danger leading to an urge to confront it or flee from it but in extreme cases of fear a freeze or paralysis response is possible. Some psychologists such as John B. Watson, Robert Plutchik, and Paul Ekman have suggested that there is only a small set of basic or innate emotions and that fear is one of them. This hypothesized set includes such emotions as joy, sadness, fright, dread, horror, panic, anxiety, acute stress reaction and anger. Fear should be distinguished from the emotion anxiety, which typically occurs without any certain or immediate external threat. Fear is frequently related to the specific behaviors of escape and avoidance, whereas anxiety is the result of threats which are perceived to be uncontrollable or unavoidable. It is worth noting that fear almost always relates to future events, such as worsening of a situation, or continuation of a situation that is unacceptable. Fear can also be an instant reaction to something presently happening. All people have an instinctual response to potential danger, which is in fact important to the survival of all species. The reactions elicited from fear are seen through advantages in evolution. Fear can be a manipulating and controlling factor in an individual's life.

Chambers 20th Century Dictionary

  1. Fear

    fēr, n. a painful emotion excited by danger: apprehension of danger or pain: alarm: the object of fear: aptness to cause fear: (B.) deep reverence: piety towards God.—v.t. to regard with fear: to expect with alarm: (B.) to stand in awe of: to venerate: (obs.) to terrify: to make afraid.—v.i. to be afraid: to be in doubt.—adj. Fear′ful, timorous: exciting intense fear: terrible.—adv. Fear′fully.—n. Fear′fulness.—adj. Fear′less, without fear: daring: brave.—adv. Fear′lessly.—ns. Fear′lessness; Fear′nought (same as Dreadnaught).—adj. Fear′some, causing fear, frightful.—adv. Fear′somely. [A.S. fǽr, fear, fǽran, to terrify; cf. Ger. gefahr, Ice. fár, harm, mischief.]

  2. Fear

    fēr, n. (Spens.) a companion. [See Fere.]

The Roycroft Dictionary

  1. fear

    1. A club used by priests, presidents, kings and policemen to keep the people from recovering stolen goods. 2. The thought of admitted inferiority. 3. The rock on which we split.

U.S. National Library of Medicine

  1. Fear

    The affective response to an actual current external danger which subsides with the elimination of the threatening condition.

Suggested Resources

  1. fear

    Song lyrics by fear -- Explore a large variety of song lyrics performed by fear on the Lyrics.com website.

  2. FEAR

    What does FEAR stand for? -- Explore the various meanings for the FEAR acronym on the Abbreviations.com website.

British National Corpus

  1. Spoken Corpus Frequency

    Rank popularity for the word 'fear' in Spoken Corpus Frequency: #1594

  2. Written Corpus Frequency

    Rank popularity for the word 'fear' in Written Corpus Frequency: #2958

  3. Nouns Frequency

    Rank popularity for the word 'fear' in Nouns Frequency: #486

  4. Verbs Frequency

    Rank popularity for the word 'fear' in Verbs Frequency: #383


  1. Chaldean Numerology

    The numerical value of fear in Chaldean Numerology is: 7

  2. Pythagorean Numerology

    The numerical value of fear in Pythagorean Numerology is: 3

Sample Sentences & Example Usage

  1. Janerik Larsson:

    We didn't do fear.

  2. Danish proverb:

    To own is to fear.

  3. Peter Nivio Zarlenga:

    Action conquers fear.

  4. Michelle Poler:

    100 days without fear.

  5. Debasish Mridha, M.D.:

    Never fear to be kind.

Images & Illustrations of fear

  1. fearfearfear

Translations for fear

From our Multilingual Translation Dictionary

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"fear." Definitions.net. STANDS4 LLC, 2018. Web. 22 Feb. 2018. <https://www.definitions.net/definition/fear>.

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