Middle English Dictionary Entry

wer(re n.
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Entry Info

Definitions (Senses and Subsenses)

Note: Cp. guer(re n.
(a) Large-scale military conflict between countries, peoples, rulers, etc. or between factions or forces within a single country, war, warfare;—also pl.; ~ faringe, q.v.; open (pleine) ~, open warfare; (b) a particular military campaign or series of campaigns, a specific war;—freq. with def. art., dem. adj., poss. pron. or noun, or prep. phrase identifying the conflict meant; the ~ of troie; (c) an armed incursion or invasion, a raid; also, a hostile attack; (d) a battle, skirmish, an armed encounter; actual fighting; unlauful werres, ?proscribed battle tactics; taken on (in) ~, to capture (sb.) in a battle; (e) a single combat, a fight between two persons; winnen on ~, to defeat and capture (sb.) in single combat; (f) an instance of civil disorder, a riot; (g) war as an art or science; war as an activity or enterprise; ~ on hors-bak, the art of cavalry warfare; (h) a state of war; holden in werres, to hold (a province) in a state of constant warfare; (i) the danger of war, the potential for war; (j) a pictorial representation of war; (k) a warlike manner, hostile intent; beren to…on ~, riden to…with ~, to charge (ride) at (sb.) in a warlike fashion; (l) ?as adj.: warlike, hostile; (m) with reduced force, in generalizing phrases: in pes and in ~, in ~ and pes, at all times; in pes nor ~, at no time.
In selected cpds., combs., and phrases: (a) ~ craft, military science; ~ hors, hors of ~, a warhorse; ~ time, time of ~, wartime; also, a time of war; the second ~ time, the time of the second war; in the time of his ~, when he was at war; civile ~, civil war; lond ~, ~ bi lond, warfare on land; also, a war fought on land; se (ship, water) ~, ~ bi se, ~ of water (the se), naval warfare; also, a naval war; abillementes of ~, military equipment; armes (wepen) of ~, military weapons; barge of ~, an armed vessel of moderate size; capitain of his werres, his commander-in-chief; counseil of ~, a war council; ginne of ~, a siege engine; governour of werres, a military commander; habites of werres, harneis for (of) ~, personal military gear; lond of ~, a war-torn land, land at war; man of ~, a soldier, fighting man; servise of ~, military service; ship of ~, a warship; toun of ~, a garrison town, a fortified town; (b) nait (trusti) in ~, resolute (trusty) in war; ware (wise) in ~, wise of werre(s, skillful (knowledgeable) in war; wilfulnesse to ~, eagerness for the fight; (c) ablen to ~, to make (sb.) fit for war; ben at (in) ~, be at war, wage war; ben outgon upon a ~, be embarked on a war; founden (gon, walken) to ~, fallen (walken) in-to ~, go to war; liven in ~, live in a state of war; uprisen to ~, of a country: rise up in war; winnen in (with) ~, win (glory, honors) in war; winnen of ~, gain control of (a land) by war, conquer in war; (d) areren (levien, meven, reisen) ~, to stir up war, begin war; biginnen werre(s, ginnen a ~, begin (a) war, begin wars; bringen werres in-to lond, involve a land in wars; bringen me ~ on honde, make war on me; enden (finen) ~, put an end to a war; haven werre(s, wage war(s; holden ~, engage in warfare, carry on war; maintenen werre(s, carry on or manage a war (wars) [see also maintenen v. 6.(b)]; also, pay for or sustain a war; maken (a) ~, usen ~, make war, wage (a) war; maken mani werres, wage many wars.
In proverbs, prov. expressions, and conventional comparisons.
(a) Armed assault on persons or property carried out by an individual or a small faction for more or less personal reasons; (b) armed resistance, struggle; (c) the fierce struggle of the hunt.
(a) Conflict, strife, contention, discord; enmity (between persons), hostility; also, domestic strife, a domestic quarrel; at ~, in or into contention; hertes ~, inner conflict; natural ~, ?a blood feud; (b) maken a ~ on, to carry on a quarrel with (sb.), be hostile to; setten werres, stir up contentions or strife.
(a) Moral or spiritual war, a struggle (against the devil, sin, etc.); rebellious resistance (to God, a pagan deity, chastity); also, a state of spiritual warfare; gostli ~; (b) an attack (of vice).
A tournament, joust, formal combat; also fig.; for the ~, of (on) ~, with unbated or sharp-pointed weapons; armed for the ~, armed with sharpened weapons; araied for the pes and for the ~, equipped with blunted and with sharpened weapons; cours of ~, a charge with unbated weapons; just (justinge) of ~, formal combat with unbated weapons; pointes of ~, feats of arms carried out with unbated weapons; spere of pes and of ~, a blunt spear and a sharpened spear; justen of (on) ~, to joust or tilt with unbated weapons.
A dispute, an honest difference of opinion.