• Knife-sharpener
  • WordNet 3.6
    • v sharpen put (an image) into focus; we cannot enjoy the movie" "Please focus the image"
    • v sharpen become sharp or sharper "The debate sharpened"
    • v sharpen make crisp or more crisp and precise "We had to sharpen our arguments"
    • v sharpen make (one's senses) more acute "This drug will sharpen your vision"
    • v sharpen give a point to "The candles are tapered"
    • v sharpen raise the pitch of (musical notes)
    • v sharpen make sharp or sharper "sharpen the knives"
    • v sharpen make (images or sounds) sharp or sharper
    • ***
Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
    • v. i Sharpen To grow or become sharp.
    • v. t Sharpen (Mus) To make sharp. "The air . . . sharpened his visual ray
      To objects distant far."
      "He that wrestles with us strengthens our nerves and sharpens our skill.""Epicurean cooks Sharpen with cloyless sauce his appetite.""Sharpen each word.""Inclosures not only preserve sound, but increase and sharpen it."
    • ***
Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
    • sharpen To make sharp or sharper; render more acute, keen, eager, active, intensive, quick, biting, severe, tart, etc.: as, to sharpen a sword or a knife; to sharpen the appetite; to sharpen vinegar.
    • sharpen In music, same as sharp, v., 2.
    • sharpen To make something sharp; put a keen edge or sharp point on something.
    • sharpen To grow or become sharp.
    • sharpen In music, same as sharp.
    • ***
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
    • v.t Sharpen to make sharp or keen, pungent or painful, active or acute
    • ***


  • Thomas Fuller
    “Absence sharpens love, presence strengthens it.”
  • Walter Savage Landor
    “The flame of anger, bright and brief, sharpens the barb of love.”
  • Confucius
    “The expectations of life depend upon diligence; the mechanic that would perfect his work must first sharpen his tools.”
  • Thomas Fuller
    “Nothing sharpens sight like envy.”
  • Peter Ustinov
    Peter Ustinov
    “Parents are the bones on which children sharpen their teeth.”
  • Helen Keller
    “As selfishness and complaint pervert and cloud the mind, so love with its joy clears and sharpens the vision.”


Sharpen your pencil - (USA) If someone says this when negotiating, they want the other person to make a better offer, a lower price.


Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
See Sharp (a.)
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
A.S. scearp; Ice. skarpr, Gr. scharf.


In literature:

Pity sharpened into anger: How could she have taken advantage of a boy?
"The Vehement Flame" by Margaret Wade Campbell Deland
The advertising of these books keenly sharpened the publicity sense of the developing advertising director.
"A Dutch Boy Fifty Years After" by Edward Bok
The truant hour of laughter and excitement, Kenny told him in a panic of remorse, had sharpened Brian's pain.
"Kenny" by Leona Dalrymple
The thick end he sharpened, and near the other end cut a small notch.
"Troop One of the Labrador" by Dillon Wallace
This time it looks as if the voters had got their knives sharpened.
"The Honorable Senator Sage-Brush" by Francis Lynde
He that wrestles with us strengthens our nerves and sharpens our skill.
"Many Thoughts of Many Minds" by Various
But wine had failed to sharpen their wits, and he scornfully rejected their solutions.
"The Actress in High Life" by Sue Petigru Bowen
She heard him, with sharpened hearing, enter her mother's room.
"By the Light of the Soul" by Mary E. Wilkins Freeman
The truth instantly flashed on the preternaturally-sharpened intellect of Magdalena.
"The Three Brides, Love in a Cottage, and Other Tales" by Francis A. Durivage
She looked old and her features sharpened out rigidly.
"The Debtor" by Mary E. Wilkins Freeman

In poetry:

We with strife of life
Worn till all life cease,
Want, a whetted knife,
Sharpening strife on strife,
How should we love peace?
"Christmas Antiphones" by Algernon Charles Swinburne
Yet though her soul must griefs sustain
Which she alone can know,
And feel that keener sense of pain
Which sharpens every woe;
"To Sensibility" by Helen Maria Williams
But soon my eyes unfix'd their stare,
My senses clearer now became,
And borne unto my sharpen'd ear,
I heard a sound, but not the same.
"A Dream" by Thomas Frederick Young
XIV. For still he sung the ills that flow
From dire oppression's ruthless fang,
And deepen'd every patriot woe,
And sharpen'd every patriot pang.
"The Irish Harp" by Sydney Owenson
To take old stings from out our heart --
Old stings that made them bleed and smart --
Only to sharpen them the more,
And press them back to the heart's own core.
"A Christmas Chant" by Abram Joseph Ryan
No ; they who were thy Lords
Might sharpen sorrow's dart,
And they might tear the chords
That bound thy noble heart ;
But unto them it was not given
To keep thy soul from finding heaven.
"Hebrew Melody" by Mary Anne Browne

In news:

Republicans sharpened their attacks on.
Biden sharpens Romney critique as campaign nears final turn.
Trail Cycle owner Dick Reinhardt sharpens a skate at the shop's new location on Lake Street.
During his four months at a forward operating base in Afghanistan, he cared for wounded US and Afghan soldiers and civilians while sharpening his diagnostic skills.
Sharpen up in this season's tailored, menswear-inspired staples.
Bringing tool sharpening operations in house can save time and money.
Whistler fest sharpens dual edge.
Ready to sharpen their skills, boost their teaching know-how and become the latest class of League Cycling Instructors.
The vote on the draft has sharpened the polarization in Egypt between Islamists and liberals.
Is this a company or way to sharpen.
Sharpening his computer skills, Cole Sallee, 12, works on a design for a garden at the Boys & Girls Club in Homer, Alaska on Nov 14, 2011.
Campaign's final stages begin with candidates trying to fine-tune images and sharpen their messages.
So after moving back to sales there for a while, to sharpen up my skills, I opened Exit South in 2005 and haven't looked back.
4- Hers sharpen speaking skills in competition.
Young players sharpen skills with star coaches.

In science:

In Chapter 4 we state the sharpened results of the ‘Additions to Theorems 1 and 2’ and the Central Limit Theorem, along with their proofs.
Universal bounds on the selfaveraging of random diffraction measures
We need to sharpen our theoretical tools in order to be able to predict the typical behavior for different classes of systems.
Complex Systems: a Physicist's Viewpoint
Theorem 2 is (up to numerical constants) a sharpening and generalization of a result of Alon, Krivelevich, and Vu .
Concentration of norms and eigenvalues of random matrices
However, this approach would result only in a slight sharpening of the constant 1/4 which appears in the exponent.
Concentration of norms and eigenvalues of random matrices
The sharpened first moment method (Lemma 4.2) implies that W−f almost surely fails to contain a ray of Γ.
Critical RWRE on trees and tree-indexed random walks