from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • noun Any of the cylindrical, keratinized, often pigmented filaments characteristically growing from the epidermis of a mammal.
  • noun A growth of such filaments, as that forming the coat of an animal or covering the scalp of a human.
  • noun A filamentous projection or bristle similar to a hair, such as a seta of an arthropod or an epidermal process of a plant.
  • noun Fabric made from the hair of certain animals.
  • noun A minute distance or narrow margin.
  • noun A precise or exact degree.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • To form fine fibers, as syrup, when tested by dripping.
  • noun One of the numerous fine filaments which more or less completely cover the skin of most mammals, and constitute the characteristic coat of this class of animals; any capillary outgrowth from the skin.
  • noun The aggregate of the hairs which grow on any mammal; hairs collectively or in the mass; in the widest sense, a dermal coat or covering either of hair (specifically so called), wool, or fur; pelage; in common use, the natural capillary covering of a person's head: formerly sometimes in the plural.
  • noun On animals, with the exception of most mammals, a filament; any fine capillary or hair-like outgrowth from the body or any part of it, but especially its surface; one of the objects which compose the hairiness, pubescence, or pilosity of an animal, or such objects collectively: used in both the singular and the plural: as, the hair or hairs of a caterpillar, that which clothes or those which clothe a lobster's gills, etc.
  • noun In botany, an expansion of the epidermis, consisting of a single cell or of a row or number of cells.
  • noun Haircloth; a garment of haircloth, especially a hair shirt used for penance.
  • noun A cloth, mat, or other fabric of hair used for various purposes in the trades, as in the extraction of oils, manufacture of soap from cocoanut-oil, etc.
  • noun Particular natural set or direction; course; order; drift; grain; character; quality.
  • noun In mech., a locking spring or other safety contrivance in the lock of a rifle or pistol, which may be released by a very slight pressure on a hair-trigger.
  • noun One of the polyps, as sertularians and others, which grow on oyster-shells. See graybeard, 3, and redbeard.
  • Made of or stuffed with hair: as, hair jewelry; a hair mattress.
  • Another spelling of hare.
  • To produce or grow hair.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • noun The collection or mass of filaments growing from the skin of an animal, and forming a covering for a part of the head or for any part or the whole of the body.
  • noun One the above-mentioned filaments, consisting, in vertebrate animals, of a long, tubular part which is free and flexible, and a bulbous root imbedded in the skin.
  • noun Hair (human or animal) used for various purposes.
  • noun (Zoöl.) A slender outgrowth from the chitinous cuticle of insects, spiders, crustaceans, and other invertebrates. Such hairs are totally unlike those of vertebrates in structure, composition, and mode of growth.
  • noun (Bot.) An outgrowth of the epidermis, consisting of one or of several cells, whether pointed, hooked, knobbed, or stellated. Internal hairs occur in the flower stalk of the yellow frog lily (Nuphar).
  • noun A spring device used in a hair-trigger firearm.
  • noun obsolete A haircloth.
  • noun Any very small distance, or degree; a hairbreadth.
  • noun [Obs.] in a rough and disagreeable manner; against the grain.
  • noun (Ship Carp.) a molding which comes in at the back of, or runs aft from, the figurehead.
  • noun (Anat.) cells with hairlike processes in the sensory epithelium of certain parts of the internal ear.
  • noun a compass or divider capable of delicate adjustment by means of a screw.
  • noun a glove of horsehair for rubbing the skin.
  • noun a netted fillet for tying up the hair of the head.
  • noun a line made of hair; a very slender line.
  • noun (Zoöl.) any moth which destroys goods made of hair, esp. Tinea biselliella.
  • noun a brush or pencil made of fine hair, for painting; -- generally called by the name of the hair used
  • noun an iron plate forming the back of the hearth of a bloomery fire.
  • noun a white perfumed powder, as of flour or starch, formerly much used for sprinkling on the hair of the head, or on wigs.
  • noun (Zoöl.) any one of several species of eared seals which do not produce fur; a sea lion.
  • noun haircloth for seats of chairs, etc.
  • noun a shirt, or a band for the loins, made of horsehair, and worn as a penance.
  • noun a strainer with a haircloth bottom.
  • noun See Gordius.
  • noun (Printing) the thinnest metal space used in lines of type.
  • noun a delicate stroke in writing.
  • noun a trigger so constructed as to discharge a firearm by a very slight pressure, as by the touch of a hair.
  • noun of no value.


from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

[Middle English her, from Old English hǣr.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Middle English hēr, heer, hær, from Old English her, hǣr , from Proto-Germanic *hēran. Compare West Frisian hier, Dutch haar, German Haar, Swedish hår, from Proto-Indo-European *keres- (“rough hair, bristle”). Compare Middle Irish carrach ("scurfy, mangy"), Albanian qere ("hair disease, ringworm, baldness"), Lithuanian šerys ("bristle, animal hair"), Russian шерсть (šerst’, "wool"), Sanskrit कपुच्छल (kapucchala, "napehair, shorthairs").


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  • Especially my roommate's, in our shower.

    March 28, 2008

  • Or on the soap. Eew.

    March 28, 2008

  • I guess that's one of the advantages of liquid bodywash :-)

    March 28, 2008

  • Sure--until your roommate gets hair on the bottle. ;->

    March 28, 2008

  • Aaaarrrggghhh! I'm having a bad hair bathroom!

    March 28, 2008

  • Dry strands of hair from the fallen days rise and

    tumble, swaying this way and that.

    From sunrise to sundown

    the woman washes her hair

    not even once straightening her waistless back.

    She combs and caresses the ripples of the sand river.

    - Kim Hye-soon, 'Taklamakan Desert', translated from the Korean by Jiwon Shin.

    November 10, 2008

  • CD: "Curly, kinky, or woolly hairs, as of the negro's head or a man's beard, owe this character chiefly to the fact that they are flattened in different planes in successive parts of their length. Hairs of extreme length and fineness grow upon the head of women..."

    April 13, 2011