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fell 1 (fĕl)
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tr.v. felled, fell·ing, fells
1.
a. To cause to fall by striking; cut or knock down: fell a tree; fell an opponent in boxing.
b. To kill: was felled by an assassin's bullet.
2. To sew or finish (a seam) with the raw edges flattened, turned under, and stitched down.
n.
1. The timber cut down in one season.
2. A felled seam.

[Middle English fellen, from Old English fellan, fyllan.]

fella·ble adj.

The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2018 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
 
fell 2 (fĕl)
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adj.
1. Of an inhumanly cruel nature; fierce: fell hordes.
2. Capable of destroying; lethal: a fell blow.
3. Dire; sinister: by some fell chance.
4. Scots Sharp and biting.
Idiom:
at/in one fell swoop
All at once.

[Middle English fel, from Old French, variant of felon; see FELON1.]

fellness n.

The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2018 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
 
fell 3 (fĕl)
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n.
1. The hide of an animal; a pelt.
2. A thin membrane directly beneath the hide.

[Middle English fel, from Old English fell; see pel-3 in the Appendix of Indo-European roots.]

The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2018 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
 
fell 4 (fĕl)
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n.
1. Chiefly British An upland stretch of open country; a moor.
2. A barren or stony hill.

[Middle English fel, from Old Norse fell, fjall, mountain, hill.]

The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2018 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
 
fell 5 (fĕl)
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v.
Past tense of fall.

The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2018 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
 

Indo-European & Semitic Roots Appendices

    Thousands of entries in the dictionary include etymologies that trace their origins back to reconstructed proto-languages. You can obtain more information about these forms in our online appendices:

    Indo-European Roots

    Semitic Roots

    The Indo-European appendix covers nearly half of the Indo-European roots that have left their mark on English words. A more complete treatment of Indo-European roots and the English words derived from them is available in our Dictionary of Indo-European Roots.

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