Language: Old English
Origin: sceadan 'to divide, separate'


2 verb
shed2 past tense and past participle shed, present participle shedding [transitive]

get rid of

to get rid of something that you no longer need or want:
The company is planning to shed about a quarter of its workforce.
The magazine is desperately trying to shed its old-fashioned image.
a diet to help you shed pounds

shed light

a) to make something easier to understand, by providing new or better information
shed light on
Recent research has shed light on the causes of the disease.
Investigators hope to shed light on what started the fire.
b) if something sheds light, it lights the area around it:
The lamp shed a harsh yellow light.


HBAHBP if a plant sheds its leaves or if an animal sheds skin or hair, they fall off as part of a natural process:
The trees were starting to shed their leaves.
As it grows, a snake will regularly shed its skin.


to drop something or allow it to fall:
He strode across the bathroom, shedding wet clothes as he went.
shed a load British English
A lorry shed its load of steel bars on the M25.

shed blood

to kill or injure people, especially during a war or a fight:
Too much blood has already been shed in this conflict.

shed tears

especially literary to cry:
She had not shed a single tear during the funeral.


if something sheds water, the water flows off its surface, instead of sinking into it

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