dear




If someone or something is dear to you, it means you hold them or it very close to your heart, as in “My country is very dear to me” or “She is a dear friend.”

As a written form of address — such as “Dear Mr. So-and-so” — dear is generally a polite but impersonal standard greeting. Dear can sometimes mean expensive, as in “The cost of food is so dear these days,” though that’s a rather dated usage nowadays. Used about children, baby animals, or other examples of insufferable cuteness, dear can also mean “sweet” or “adorable.” In this sense, dear is a favorite word of grandmothers and other doting relations.

Definitions of dear
  1. noun

    a beloved person; used as terms of endearment

    synonyms:
    beloved, dearest, honey, love
    see moresee less

    type of:

    lover

    a person who loves someone or is loved by someone

  2. noun

    a sweet innocent mild-mannered person (especially a child)

    synonyms:
    lamb
    see moresee less

    type of:

    inexperienced person, innocent

    a person who lacks knowledge of evil

  3. adjective

    dearly loved

    synonyms:
    beloved, darling

    loved

    held dear
  4. adjective

    with or in a close or intimate relationship

    “my sisters and brothers are near and
    dear
    synonyms:
    good, near

    close

    close in relevance or relationship
  5. adjective

    earnest

    synonyms:
    devout, earnest, heartfelt

    sincere

    open and genuine; not deceitful
  6. adjective

    having a high price

    “much too
    dear for my pocketbook”
    synonyms:
    costly, high-priced, pricey, pricy

    expensive

    high in price or charging high prices
  7. adverb

    with affection

    synonyms:
    affectionately, dearly

  8. adverb

    at a great cost

    “this cost him
    dear
    synonyms:
    dearly

Word Family