Noah Webster's New International Dictionary of the English Language
1. (v. t.) To cut, clip, or sever anything from with shears or a like instrument; as, to shear sheep; to shear cloth.
2. (v. t.) To separate or sever with shears or a similar instrument; to cut off; to clip (something) from a surface; as, to shear a fleece.
3. (v. t.) To reap, as grain.
4. (v. t.) Fig.: To deprive of property; to fleece.
5. (v. t.) To produce a change of shape in by a shear. See Shear, n., 4.
6. (n.) A pair of shears; -- now always used in the plural, but formerly also in the singular. See Shears.
7. (n.) A shearing; -- used in designating the age of sheep.
8. (n.) An action, resulting from applied forces, which tends to cause two contiguous parts of a body to slide relatively to each other in a direction parallel to their plane of contact; -- also called shearing stress, and tangential stress.
9. (n.) A strain, or change of shape, of an elastic body, consisting of an extension in one direction, an equal compression in a perpendicular direction, with an unchanged magnitude in the third direction.
10. (v. i.) To deviate. See Sheer.
11. (v. i.) To become more or less completely divided, as a body under the action of forces, by the sliding of two contiguous parts relatively to each other in a direction parallel to their plane of contact.