What does pierce mean?

Definitions for pierce

This dictionary definitions page includes all the possible meanings, example usage and translations of the word pierce.

Princeton's WordNet

  1. Pierce, Franklin Pierce, President Pierceverb

    14th President of the United States (1804-1869)

  2. pierceverb

    cut or make a way through

    "the knife cut through the flesh"; "The path pierced the jungle"; "Light pierced through the forest"

  3. pierceverb

    move or affect (a person's emotions or bodily feelings) deeply or sharply

    "The cold pierced her bones"; "Her words pierced the students"

  4. pierceverb

    sound sharply or shrilly

    "The scream pierced the night"

  5. pierce, thrustverb

    penetrate or cut through with a sharp instrument

  6. pierceverb

    make a hole into

    "The needle pierced her flesh"


  1. pierceverb

    to puncture; to break through

    The diver pierced the surface of the water with scarcely a splash.

  2. pierceverb

    to create a hole in the skin for the purpose of inserting jewelry

    Can you believe he pierced his tongue?

  3. pierceverb

    to break or interrupt abruptly

    A scream pierced the darkness.

  4. Piercenoun

    A male given name from Ancient Greek, medieval variant of Piers. Modern usage may also derive from the surname.

  5. Piercenoun

    A patronymic surname.

  6. Piercenoun

    A city, the county seat of Pierce County, Nebraska, United States.

  7. Etymology: percier, from its conjugated forms such as pierce, probably from *, from pertusus, past participle of pertundere, from per- + tundere.

Samuel Johnson's Dictionary

  1. To PIERCEverb

    Etymology: percer, Fr.

    Steed threatens steed in high and boastful neighs,
    Piercing the night’s dull ear. William Shakespeare, Henry V.

    The love of money is the root of all evil; which while some coveted after, they have pierced themselves through with many sorrows. 1 Tim. vi. 10.

    With this fatal sword, on which I dy’d,
    I pierce her open’d back or tender side. Dryden.

    The glorious temple shall arise,
    And with new lustre pierce the neighb’ring skies. Matthew Prior.

    Did your letters pierce the queen;
    She read them in my presence,
    And now and then an ample tear trill’d down. William Shakespeare.

  2. To Pierceverb

    Her sighs will make a batt’ry in his breast;
    Her tears will pierce into a marble heart. William Shakespeare.

    There is that speaketh like the piercings of a sword; but the tongue of the wise is health. Proverbs xii. 18.

    Short arrows, called sprights, without any other heads, save wood sharpened, were discharged out of muskets, and would pierce through the sides of ships, where a bullet would not pierce. Francis Bacon, Natural History.

    Say, she be mute, and will not speak a word;
    Then I’ll commend her volubility;
    And say she uttereth piercing eloquence. William Shakespeare.

    She would not pierce further into his meaning, than himself should declare, so would she interpret all his doings to be accomplished in goodness. Sidney, b. ii.

    All men knew Nathaniel to be an Israelite; but our Saviour piercing deeper, giveth further testimony of him than men could have done. Richard Hooker, b. iii. s. 1.

    They provide more piercing statutes daily to chain up the poor. William Shakespeare.


  1. pierce

    To puncture or make a hole in something, typically using a sharp or pointed object or instrument. This can also refer to penetrating or succeeding in making an impact in a figurative sense, such as a sharp sound piercing the silence.

Webster Dictionary

  1. Pierceverb

    to thrust into, penetrate, or transfix, with a pointed instrument

  2. Pierceverb

    to penetrate; to enter; to force a way into or through; to pass into or through; as, to pierce the enemy's line; a shot pierced the ship

  3. Pierceverb

    fig.: To penetrate; to affect deeply; as, to pierce a mystery

  4. Pierceverb

    to enter; to penetrate; to make a way into or through something, as a pointed instrument does; -- used literally and figuratively

  5. Etymology: [OE. percen, F. percer, OF. percier, perchier, parchier; perh. fr. (assumed) LL. pertusiare for pertusare, fr. L. pertundere, pertusum, to beat, push, bore through; per through + tundere to beat: cf. OF. pertuisier to pierce, F. pertuis a hole. Cf. Contuse, Parch, Pertuse.]


  1. Pierce

    Pierce is a city in Pierce County, Nebraska, United States. It is part of the Norfolk, Nebraska Micropolitan Statistical Area. The population was 1,767 at the 2010 census. It is the county seat of Pierce County.

Chambers 20th Century Dictionary

  1. Pierce

    pērs, v.t. to thrust or make a hole through: to enter, or force a way into: to touch or move deeply: to dive into, as a secret.—v.i. to penetrate.—adj. Pierce′able, capable of being pierced.—n. Pierc′er, one who, or that which, pierces: any sharp instrument used for piercing: a stiletto.—adj. Pierc′ing.—adv. Pierc′ingly.—n. Pierc′ingness. [O. Fr. percer, prob. pertuisierpertuis, a hole—L. pertundĕre, pertusum, to thrust through.]

Surnames Frequency by Census Records


    According to the U.S. Census Bureau, Pierce is ranked #202 in terms of the most common surnames in America.

    The Pierce surname appeared 138,629 times in the 2010 census and if you were to sample 100,000 people in the United States, approximately 47 would have the surname Pierce.

    80.9% or 112,262 total occurrences were White.
    12.8% or 17,828 total occurrences were Black.
    2.4% or 3,424 total occurrences were of Hispanic origin.
    2.1% or 2,911 total occurrences were of two or more races.
    1% or 1,469 total occurrences were American Indian or Alaskan Native.
    0.5% or 735 total occurrences were Asian.

Matched Categories

Anagrams for pierce »

  1. Peirce

  2. recipe

  3. piecer

How to pronounce pierce?

How to say pierce in sign language?


  1. Chaldean Numerology

    The numerical value of pierce in Chaldean Numerology is: 6

  2. Pythagorean Numerology

    The numerical value of pierce in Pythagorean Numerology is: 2

Examples of pierce in a Sentence

  1. The Rock : Dwayne Johnson:

    Pierce Brosnan Dr. Fate unwavering support and relentless excitement for this passion project of mine has meant the world to me. Now it's my turn to deliver for Pierce Brosnan Dr. Fate. The hierarchy of power in the DC Universe is changing.

  2. Linda Rosenthal:

    Though it may seem inconceivable that anyone would tattoo or pierce their dog or cat, a quick Internet search reveals that it is a growing trend among some misguided individuals.

  3. David Urban:

    The attorney-client privilege is sacrosanct here. There is the crime fraud exception -- the only time you get to pierce that attorney-client privilege is if there is a crime committed, this is a pretty high bar stuff and we will have to see, but it is an extraordinary step to be taken, for sure.

  4. Said Wright:

    I’ve been taking care of my father with dementia and things just got a little tough, so I decided to set out on a kayak trip, packed up the kayak with my fishing rods, cooler, fishing net and set off from Fort Pierce.

  5. Kyle Rittenhouse:

    I was in jail for 87 days. Lin Wood was raising money on my behalf, and Lin Wood held me in jail for 87 days – disrespected my wishes, put me on media interviews which I should never have done … along with John Pierce ; they said I was safer in jail instead of at home with my family.

Popularity rank by frequency of use


Translations for pierce

From our Multilingual Translation Dictionary

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"pierce." Definitions.net. STANDS4 LLC, 2024. Web. 25 Jun 2024. <https://www.definitions.net/definition/pierce>.

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    assist or encourage, usually in some wrongdoing
    A fluster
    B abet
    C monish
    D lucubrate

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