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tr.v. sev·ered, sev·er·ing, sev·ers
1. To cut off (a part) from a whole: severed the branch from the tree.
2. To divide into parts; break or interrupt: sever a cord; severed the army's supply lines.
3. To break up (a relationship, for example); dissolve. See Synonyms at separate.

[Middle English severen, from Anglo-Norman severer, from Vulgar Latin *sēperāre, from Latin sēparāre; see separate.]
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Adj.1.severed - detached by cutting; "cut flowers"; "a severed head"; "an old tale of Anne Bolyn walking the castle walls with her poor cut-off head under her arm"
cut - separated into parts or laid open or penetrated with a sharp edge or instrument; "the cut surface was mottled"; "cut tobacco"; "blood from his cut forehead"; "bandages on her cut wrists"
References in classic literature ?
A wide and apparently an impervious boundary of forests severed the possessions of the hostile provinces of France and England.
Nevertheless, this very sentiment is an evidence that the connexion, which has become an unhealthy one, should at least be severed.
When first severed, the head is dropped astern and held there by a cable till the body is stripped.
One with a swift stroke cut the throat; another with two swift strokes severed the head, which fell to the floor and vanished through a hole.
Poor old Mammy, in particular, whose heart, severed from all natural domestic ties, had consoled itself with this one beautiful being, was almost heart-broken.
Then everybody despises him for his cowardice and wants him punished and made ridiculous; so they hough him from behind, and it is the funniest thing in the world to see him hobbling around on his severed legs; the whole vast house goes into hurricanes of laughter over it; I have laughed till the tears ran down my cheeks to see it.
If a national toe required amputating, he could not see that it needed anything more than poulticing; when others saw that the mortification had reached the knee, he first perceived that the toe needed cutting off--so he cut it off; and he severed the leg at the knee when others saw that the disease had reached the thigh.
Thus was I severed from Bessie and Gateshead; thus whirled away to unknown, and, as I then deemed, remote and mysterious regions.
Utterly incapable of appreciating the injury done her by Frank's infamous treachery to his engagement -- an injury which had severed her, at one cruel blow, from the aspiration which, delusion though it was, had been the saving aspiration of her life -- Captain Wragge accepted the simple fact of her despair just as he found it, and then looked straight to the consequences of the proposal which she had made to him.
To people accustomed to reason about the forms in which their religious feeling has incorporated itself, it is difficult to enter into that simple, untaught state of mind in which the form and the feeling have never been severed by an act of reflection.
Before men could so much as think, he had seized the axe Groan-Maker, and with a blow of the steel he held had severed the thong of leather which bound it to the wrist of Jikiza, and sprung back, holding the great axe aloft, and casting down his own weapon upon the ground.
There was a murmur even among the attendants of Prince John; but De Bracy, whose profession freed him from all scruples, extended his long lance over the space which separated the gallery from the lists, and would have executed the commands of the Prince before Athelstane the Unready had recovered presence of mind sufficient even to draw back his person from the weapon, had not Cedric, as prompt as his companion was tardy, unsheathed, with the speed of lightning, the short sword which he wore, and at a single blow severed the point of the lance from the handle.

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