The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48:
Bear \Bear\ (b[^a]r), n. [OE. bere, AS. bera; akin to D. beer,
OHG. bero, pero, G. b[aum]r, Icel. & Sw. bj["o]rn, and
possibly to L. fera wild beast, Gr. fh`r beast, Skr. bhalla
1. (Zool.) Any species of the genus Ursus, and of the
closely allied genera. Bears are plantigrade Carnivora,
but they live largely on fruit and insects.
Note: The European brown bear (Ursus arctos), the white
polar bear (Ursus maritimus), the grizzly bear
(Ursus horribilis), the American black bear, and its
variety the cinnamon bear (Ursus Americanus), the
Syrian bear (Ursus Syriacus), and the sloth bear, are
among the notable species.
2. (Zool.) An animal which has some resemblance to a bear in
form or habits, but no real affinity; as, the woolly bear;
ant bear; water bear; sea bear.
3. (Astron.) One of two constellations in the northern
hemisphere, called respectively the Great Bear and the
Lesser Bear, or Ursa Major and Ursa Minor.
4. Metaphorically: A brutal, coarse, or morose person.
5. (Stock Exchange) A person who sells stocks or securities
for future delivery in expectation of a fall in the
Note: The bears and bulls of the Stock Exchange, whose
interest it is, the one to depress, and the other to
raise, stocks, are said to be so called in allusion to
the bear's habit of pulling down, and the bull's of
6. (Mach.) A portable punching machine.
7. (Naut.) A block covered with coarse matting; -- used to
scour the deck.
Australian bear. (Zool.) See Koala.
Bear baiting, the sport of baiting bears with dogs.
Bear caterpillar (Zool.), the hairy larva of a moth, esp.
of the genus Euprepia.
(a) A place where bears are kept for diversion or
(b) Any place where riotous conduct is common or
permitted. --M. Arnold.
Bear leader, one who leads about a performing bear for
money; hence, a facetious term for one who takes charge of
a young man on his travels.