Sever vs severe

Photo of author


Sever means to cut apart, to separate into parts, or to end a relationship. Sever is a verb, related words are severs, severed, severing. Adjective forms are severed and severable. Sever comes from the Old French word sevrer, which means to separate.

Severe is a description of something as harsh, highly critical, intense, demanding. Severe may also refer to someone who is unsmiling and formal, or something that is plain in appearance. Severe is an adjective, related words are severer, severest, the adverb form is severely and the noun form is severeness. Severe is derived from the Latin word severus, meaning grave, strict, austere.


In response to attorney Linton Gordon (representing the Jamaica Defence Force), Blair — who also headed the Peace Management Initiative — said he agreed 100 per cent that politicians should sever ties with dons, as he spoke passionately about the issue. (The Jamaica Observer)

The single resolution fund—which was approved and set up in 2014 in response to the eurozone sovereign debt crisis—aims to sever the link between weak banks and government finances by ending expensive taxpayer bailouts. (The Wall Street Journal)

From now until December 5, a replica of Van Gogh’s severed ear will be on display for the citizens of New York in Manhattan’s Ronald Feldman Fine Arts gallery thanks to DNA artist Diemut Strebe. (The Tribune)

Severe floods remain a risk over the weekend in some areas, the national group co-ordinating the response to the floods said on Wednesday. (The Irish Times)

A man killed at Peterborough prison this morning was severely beaten to death and found by guards in his cell, it has been reported. (The Peterborough Telegraph)