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barrenly, adv.barrenness, n.
/bar"euhn/, adj.
1. not producing or incapable of producing offspring; sterile: a barren woman.
2. unproductive; unfruitful: barren land.
3. without capacity to interest or attract: a barren period in American architecture.
4. mentally unproductive; dull; stupid.
5. not producing results; fruitless: a barren effort.
6. destitute; bereft; lacking (usually fol. by of): barren of tender feelings.
7. Usually, barrens. level or slightly rolling land, usually with a sandy soil and few trees, and relatively infertile.
[1200-50; ME bareyn(e), barayn(e) < AF barai(gn)e, OF brahaigne (F bréhaigne (of animals) sterile), akin to Sp breña scrubby, uncultivated ground, Upper It barena land along a lagoon covered by high water; appar < Celtic, cf. Welsh braenar, Ir branar fallow land, but derivational details unclear]
Syn. 1. childless, unprolific, infertile. 2. infertile, depleted, waste. See bare1. 5. ineffectual, ineffective.
Ant. 1-6. fertile.

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Universalium. 2010.


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