from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. A cylindrical glass or earthenware vessel with a wide mouth and usually no handles.
  • n. The amount that a jar can hold.
  • n. Chiefly British A glass of beer.
  • transitive v. To put into a jar.
  • intransitive v. To make or utter a harsh sound.
  • intransitive v. To be disturbing or irritating; grate: The incessant talking jarred on my nerves.
  • intransitive v. To shake or shiver from impact.
  • intransitive v. To clash or conflict: "We ourselves . . . often jar with the landscape” ( Isak Dinesen).
  • transitive v. To bump or cause to move or shake from impact.
  • transitive v. To startle or unsettle; shock.
  • n. A jolt; a shock. See Synonyms at collision.
  • n. Harsh or grating sound; discord.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A small, approximately cylindrical container for food, normally made of glass or clay.
  • n. Java archive
  • n. JAR: Tool to create compressed file archives.
  • v. To knock or strike sharply.
  • v. to shock or surprise.
  • v. To be so different that it looks strange and doesn't fit in with the surroundings; to be incongruent.
  • n. A shake.
  • n. A sense of alarm or dismay.
  • n. Discord, contention; quarrelling.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. A turn.
  • n. A deep, broad-mouthed vessel of earthenware or glass, for holding fruit, preserves, etc., or for ornamental purposes
  • n. The measure of what is contained in a jar
  • intransitive v. To give forth a rudely quivering or tremulous sound; to sound harshly or discordantly.
  • intransitive v. To act in opposition or disagreement; to clash; to interfere; to quarrel; to dispute.
  • transitive v. To cause a short, tremulous motion of, to cause to tremble, as by a sudden shock or blow; to shake; to shock
  • transitive v. To tick; to beat; to mark or tell off.
  • n. A rattling, tremulous vibration or shock; a shake; a harsh sound; a discord
  • n. Clash of interest or opinions; collision; discord; debate; slight disagreement.
  • n. A regular vibration, as of a pendulum.
  • n. In deep well boring, a device resembling two long chain links, for connecting a percussion drill to the rod or rope which works it, so that the drill is driven down by impact and is jerked loose when jammed.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • To produce a brief rattling or tremulous sound; be discordant in sound.
  • To grate on the ear or the feelings; have a jangling or discordant quality; clash.
  • To receive a short, rattling, tremulous motion, as from an impulse; shake joltingly.
  • To sound or tick in vibrating, as a pendulum; hence, to be marked off by regular vibrations or ticks.
  • To speak or talk clatteringly or discordantly; haggle; dispute; quarrel.
  • To make discordant.
  • To impart a short, tremulous motion to; cause to shake or tremble; disturb.
  • To make rough; roughen.
  • n. A rattling sound; a harsh sound; a discord.
  • n. A clashing of interest or opinions; collision; discord; debate; conflict: as, family jars.
  • n. A short tremulous motion or vibration, as from an impulse; a sudden shaking or quiver: as, to feel the jar of an earthquake, or from blasting.
  • n. A clicking or ticking vibration, as of a pendulum; a tick.
  • n. plural A sliding joint in the boring-rods used in rope-drilling.
  • n. A turn: used separately only in the occasional colloquial phrases on a jar, on the jar, usually ajar, on the turn; turned a little way, as a door or gate.
  • n. An earthen or glass vessel of simple form, without handle or spout.
  • n. The quantity contained in a jar; the contents of a jar.
  • To drill by impact or percussion; use an impact drill or drill-jar upon.
  • To shock or surprise (one) with some sudden or extraordinary remark, statement, or fact.
  • n. A tool, used in drilling wells in rock, consisting of two long and flat links capable of sliding the one within the other, in order that the drill-bit may be loosened on the up stroke in case it has become jammed in the lock.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • v. shock physically
  • v. affect in a disagreeable way
  • n. the quantity contained in a jar
  • n. a vessel (usually cylindrical) with a wide mouth and without handles
  • v. place in a cylindrical vessel
  • v. be incompatible; be or come into conflict
  • n. a sudden jarring impact
  • v. move or cause to move with a sudden jerky motion


Middle English jarre, a liquid measure, from Old French (from Provençal jarra) and from Medieval Latin jarra, both from Arabic jarra, earthen jar, from jarra, to draw, pull; see grr in Semitic roots.
Perhaps of imitative origin.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From French jarre, from Arabic جره (jarrah, "earthern receptacle"). (Wiktionary)
Unknown; perhaps imitative. (Wiktionary)


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  • Nothing can jar him—suffering and darkness cannot—death and fear cannot. Preface 1855

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