sharp - definition and synonyms


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  1. 1
    a sharp object has an edge that can cut or an end that is pointed

    Cut the melon in half using a sharp knife.

    The cage should have no sharp edges that might cause injury.

    These scissors aren’t very sharp.

    sharp teeth/claws

    a sharp pencil

  2. 2
    a sharp change is sudden and very big
    a sharp rise/increase:

    Shops are reporting a sharp rise in sales of organic produce.

    a sharp decline/drop/fall:

    This month’s figures show a sharp drop in unemployment.

    1. b.
      a sharp pain is sudden and severe

      I felt a sharp pain in my foot.

    2. c.
      a sharp feeling is sudden and strong

      Lindsey felt a sharp pang of guilt.

    3. d.
      a sharp breath is taken suddenly, often because you are surprised

      There was a sharp intake of breath when the prizewinners were announced.

    4. e.
      a sharp sound is sudden and loud

      a sharp crack of gunfire

      a sharp cry of fear

  3. 3
    intelligent and quick to notice something or react to something

    Some of these kids are pretty sharp when it comes to maths.

    He has a sharp wit and a wicked sense of humour.

    keep a sharp eye/lookout on something:

    The Agency keeps a sharp eye on sales of arms abroad.

  4. 5
    a sharp comment, voice, or expression shows that someone is unfriendly or annoyed

    My father shot her a sharp look but said nothing.

    The deal has come under sharp criticism from the opposition parties.

  5. 11
    music used for showing that a musical note should be played or sung a semitone higher than usual

    Chopin’s Nocturne in C sharp minor

derived word


noun [uncountable]