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dear “loss—The,” THE TEMPEST, v. 1. 146 ; “Full of dear guiltiness,” LOVE'S LABOUR'S LOST, v. 2. 779 ; “the clamours of their own dear groans,” LOVE'S LABOUR'S LOST, v. 2. 852 ; “it is a dear expense,” A MIDSUMMER-NIGHT'S DREAM, i. 1. 249 ; “dear perfection,” ALL'S WELL THAT ENDS WELL, v. 3. 18 ; ROMEO AND JULIET, ii. 2. 46; “in terms so bloody and so dear,” TWELFTH NIGHT, v. 1. 65 ; “my dear offence,” KING JOHN, i. 1. 257 ; “a dear account,” RICHARD II., i. 1. 130 ; “thy dear exile,” RICHARD II., i. 3. 151 ; “so dear a show of zeal,” 1 HENRY IV., v. 4. 95 ; “this dear and deep rebuke,” 2 HENRY IV., iv. 5. 141 ; “your dear offences,” HENRY V., ii. 2. 181 ; “in so dear degree,” RICHARD III., i. 4. 206 ; “so dear a loss,” RICHARD III., ii. 2. 77 , 78, 79; “dear petition,” TROILUS AND CRESSIDA, v. 3. 9 ; “this dear sight,” TITUS ANDRONICUS, iii. 1. 257 ; “O dear account!” ROMEO AND JULIET, i. 5. 116 ; “full of charge Of dear import,” ROMEO AND JULIET, v. 2. 19 ; “In dear employment,” ROMEO AND JULIET, v. 3. 32 ; “dear divorce 'Twixt natural son and sire!” TIMON OF ATHENS, iv. 3. 379 ; “our dear peril,” TIMON OF ATHENS, v. 1. 226 ; “some dear cause,” KING LEAR, iv. 3. 51 ; “their dear loss,” CYMBELINE, v. 5. 345 ; “many dearer in this bloody fray,” 1 HENRY IV., v. 4. 108 ( “of greater value,” JOHNSON) , ; “dearest spirits,” LOVE'S LABOUR'S LOST, ii. 1. 1 ; “dearest groans,” ALL'S WELL THAT ENDS WELL, iv. 5. 10 ; “dearest enemy,” 1 HENRY IV., iii. 2. 123 ; “dearest speed,” 1 HENRY IV., v. 5. 36 ; “dearest foe,” HAMLET, i. 2. 182 ; “dearest action,” OTHELLO, i. 3. 85 ; “dearest spite,” SONNETS, xxxvii. 3. “cites a sensation of hurt, pain, and consequently of anxiety, solicitude, care, earnestness, that I shall extract it as the best comment upon the apparently opposite uses of the word in our great poet: ‘Dearth is the third person singular of the English (from the AngloSaxon verb Derian, nocere, lædere), to dere. It means some or any season, weather, or other cause, which dereth, that is, maketh dear, hurteth, or doth mischief.—The English verb to dere was formerly in common use.’ He then produces about twenty examples, the last from Hamlet [i. 2. 182-183],
“‘Would I had met my dearest foe in heaven
Ere [Or ever] I had seen that day.’” Tooke continues: ‘Johnson and Malone, who trusted to their Latin to explain his (Shakespeare's) English, for deer and deerest would have us read dire and direst; not knowing that Dere and Deriend mean hurt and hurting, mischief and mischievous; and that their Latin dirus is from our Anglo-Saxon Dere, which they would expunge.’ EIIEA HTEPOENTA, vol. ii. p. 409. A most pertinent illustration of Tooke's etymology has occurred to me in a Ms. poem by Richard Rolle the Hermit of Hampole:
‘Bot flatering lele and loselry,
Is grete chepe in thair courtes namly,
The most derthe of any, that is
Aboute tham there, is sothfastnes.’Spec. Vitæ.(SINGER) . See too Richardson'sDict., where Tooke's explanation of dear is given as the true one. “Throughout Shakespeare and all the poets of his and a much later day, we find this epithet [dearest] applied to that person or thing, which, for or against us, excites the liveliest and strongest interest. It is used variously, indefinitely and metaphorically, to express the warmest feelings of the soul; its nearest, most intimate, home and heartfelt emotions: and here [‘my dearest foe,’ Hamlet, act i. sc. 2], no doubt, though, as every where else, more directly interpreted, signifying ‘veriest, extremest,’ must by consequence and figuratively import ‘bitterest, deadliest, most mortal.’ As extremes are said in a certain sense to approximate, and are in many respects alike or the same, so this word is made in a certain sense to carry with it an union of the fiercest opposites: it is made to signify the extremes of love and hatred. It may be said to be equivalent generally to very; and to import ‘the excess, the utmost, the superlative’ of that, whatever it may be, to which it is applied. But to suppose, with Tooke (Divers. of Purl. ii. 409), that in all cases dear must at that time have meant ‘injurious,’ as being derived from the Saxon verb dere, to hurt, is perfectly absurd. Dr. Johnson's derivation of the word, as used in this place, from the Latin dirus, is doubtless ridiculous enough; but Tooke has not produced a single instance of the use of it, that is, of the adjective, in the sense upon which he insists; except, as he pretends, from our author, etc. ” (CALDECOTT) . “Horne Tooke (Divers. of Purley, 612, etc.) makes a plausible case in favour of dear being derived from the ancient verb derian, to hurt, to annoy, and of its proper meaning being, therefore, injurious or hateful [hurtful]. His notion seems to be, that from this derian we have dearth, meaning properly that sort of injury which is done by the weather, and that, a usual consequence of dearth being to make the produce of the earth high-priced, the adjective dear has thence taken its common meaning of precious. This is not all distinctly asserted; but what of it may not be explicitly set forth is supposed and implied. It is, however, against an explanation which has been generally accepted, that there is no appearance of connexion between derian and the contemporary word answering to dear in the sense of high-priced, precious, beloved, which is deore, dúre, or dyre, and is evidently from the same root, not with derian, but with deóran, or dýran, to hold dear, to love. There is no doubt about the existence of an old English verb dere, meaning to hurt, the unquestionable representative of the original derian: thus in Chaucer (C. T. 1824) Theseus says to Palamon and Arcite, in the Knight's Tale:
‘And ye shul bothe anon unto me swere
That never mo ye shul my contree dere,
Ne maken werre upon me night ne day,
But ben my frendes in alle that ye may.’ But perhaps we may get most easily and naturally at the sense which dear sometimes assumes by supposing that the notion properly involved in it of love, having first become generalized into that of a strong affection of any kind, had thence passed on into that of such an emotion the very reverse of love. We seem to have it in the intermediate sense in such instances as the following:
‘Some dear cause
Will in concealment wrap me up a while.’
King Lear, iv. 3. 51.

‘A precious ring; a ring that I must use
In dear employment.’ Romeo and Juliet, v. 3. 32. And even when Hamlet speaks of his ‘dearest foe,’ or when Celia remarks to Rosalind, in As You Like It, i. 3. 31, ‘My father hated his [Orlando's] father dearly,’ the word need not be understood as implying more than strong or passionate emotion” (CRAIK) .

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