Meaning of SAW in English


Etymology: Middle English saugh (past singular), sawen (past plural), from Old English seah (past singular), sāwon (past plural)

past or nonstandard past part of see

II. ˈsȯ noun

( -s )

Etymology: Middle English sawe, from Old English sagu, sage; akin to Old High German sega, saga saw, Old Norse sög saw, Latin secare to cut, securis ax, secula sickle, Old Slavic sěšti to cut, sekyra ax, Albanian shatë mattock; basic meaning: to cut



(1) : a manually operated or power-driven tool used to cut hard material (as wood, metal, or bone) and usually consisting of a thin flat blade or plate of tempered steel with a continuous series of teeth on the edge and mounted in a handle or frame

(2) : a saw blade

b. : any of various tools or devices without teeth that cut by wearing out a kerf: as

(1) : helicoidal saw

(2) : a soft steel disk revolved at high speed to cut metal (as armor plate)

c. : a tool or machine having a saw for cutting


a. : the ovipositor of a sawfly

b. : the snout of a sawfish

III. verb

( sawed ; sawed ˈsȯd ; or sawn ˈsȯn ; sawing ; saws )

Etymology: Middle English sawen, from sawe saw

transitive verb


a. : to cut with a saw

saw timber

saw marble

saw the log in two

b. : to cut into pieces as if with a saw

about 20 carbines and tommy guns practically sawed him in half — Bill Alcine

c. : to cut kerfs across (the back of an unbound hand-sewn book) to receive the cords that secure the covers in order to prevent the cords from raising ridges on the covered backbone — usually used with in

2. : to produce or form by cutting with or as if with a saw

solid wheels sawed from the trunks of cottonwood trees — American Guide Series: Texas


a. : to cut through as though using a saw

a fir tree sawed the air with its creaking branches — Elizabeth Taylor

do not saw the air too much with your hand — Shakespeare

b. : to give the motion of a saw to

sawing the towel across his back — A.P.Gaskell

intransitive verb


a. : to use a saw

he saws well

b. : to cut with or as if with a saw

a machine that can saw in many patterns

the river that sawed through the rising mountain barrier — American Guide Series: Washington

2. : to admit of being cut with a saw

the timber saws smoothly


a. : to make motions as though using a saw

sawed at the reins

b. : to play on a stringed instrument with a bow

the cellist sawed away

- saw alive

- saw gourds

- saw wood

IV. noun

( -s )

Etymology: Middle English sawe, from Old English sagu speech, talk, discourse; akin to Old High German & Old Norse saga tale, saga, account, Old English secgan to say — more at say

: a traditional saying : maxim , proverb

the old saw that ignorance is bliss — M.W.Childs

Webster's New International English Dictionary.      Новый международный словарь английского языка Webster.