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sheer
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The Two Towers
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sheer
Used In
The Two Towers
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as in: a sheer cliff Define
so steep it is almost vertical
  • From that point there was a sheer drop, for the cliff was slightly undercut, and even Gollum could not find a hold of any kind.

  • There are no more uses of "sheer" identified with this meaning, but check unspecified meaning below.

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  • Be careful on that road. There is a sheer drop-off on the right.
  • A sheer cliff drops from the lighthouse to the sea.

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unspecified meaning
  • Below it twenty fathoms or more, there was a wide and rugged shelf which ended suddenly in the brink of a sheer cliff: the East Wall of Rohan.
  • A little stream escaped from the springs above, and leaving the main water, fell tinkling down the sheer face of the wall, pouring in silver drops, like a fine curtain in front of the arched bay.

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  • On that side a narrow path ran round towards the great gate, between the wall and the sheer brink of the Rock.
  • At the far end the rock-wall was sheer, but at the bottom it had been hollowed back into a shallow bay with an arched roof: the only roof of the hall, save the branches of the trees, which at the inner end overshadowed all the ground leaving only a broad open path in the middle.
  • Upon the east too sheer and stony was the valley’s side; upon the left, from the west, their final doom approached.
  • On the further side it reared up again, many fathoms at a single leap: a great grey cliff loomed before them, cut sheer down as if by a knife stroke.
  • The outer fall was indeed no longer sheer, but sloped outwards a little.
  • Down the face of a precipice, sheer and almost smooth it seemed in the pale moonlight, a small black shape was moving with its thin limbs splayed out.
  • There was one awkward spot, where there was no ledge and the wall was sheer and even undercut for a short space; there he slipped and swung out on the silver line.
  • Nor did Sam find any nook or hollow to shelter in: only bare stony slopes frowned over by the cliff, which now rose again, higher and more sheer as they went back.

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  • This was the only entrance to the tower; but many tall windows were cut with deep embrasures in the climbing walls: far up they peered like little eyes in the sheer faces of the horns.
  • But always they found its outward faces sheer, high and impassable, frowning over the plain below; beyond its tumbled skirts lay livid festering marshes where nothing moved and not even a bird was to be seen.
  • High cliffs lowered upon either side, and thrust forward from its mouth were two sheer hills, black-boned and bare.
  • They had come to the end of a long cutting, deep, and sheer-sided in the middle, by which the road clove its way through a stony ridge.
  • On your west is an edge where the land falls into the great vales, sometimes suddenly and sheer, sometimes in long hillsides.
  • ’What ought I to have done? ’ As the sheer sides of the Cleft closed about him, before he reached the actual summit, before he looked at last on the path descending into the Nameless Land.
  • Ahead of them there was a bay in the valley-side, and round the head of this the path went on, no more than a wide ledge with a chasm on the right; across the sheer southward face of the mountain it crawled upwards, until it disappeared into the blackness above.
  • The hobbits struggled on, until at last they were clinging with desperate fingers to the steps ahead, and forcing their aching knees to bend and straighten; and ever as the stair cut its way deeper into the sheer mountain the rocky walls rose higher and higher above their heads.
  • At their right, eastwards, the torrent fell, splashing over many terraces, and then, pouring down a steep race, it filled a smooth-hewn channel with a dark force of water flecked with foam, and curling and rushing almost at their feet it plunged sheer over the edge that yawned upon their left.

  • There are no more uses of "sheer" in the book.


To see samples from other sources, click a word sense below:
as in: a sheer blouse Define
typically of fabric: very thin and delicate -- often transparent
as in: sheer fun Define
complete or pure -- without restriction, qualification, or other elements (used for emphasis)
as in: a sheer cliff Define
so steep it is almost vertical
as in: sheered to the left Define
change direction abruptly; or to cause such a change of direction
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