Pear (?), n. [OE. pere, AS. peru, L. pirum: cf. F. poire. Cf. Perry.] Bot.
The fleshy pome, or fruit, of a rosaceous tree (Pyrus communis), cultivated in many varieties in temperate climates; also, the tree which bears this fruit. See Pear family, below.
Pear blight. (a) Bot. A name of two distinct diseases of pear trees, both causing a destruction of the branches, viz., that caused by a minute insect (Xyleborus pyri), and that caused by the freezing of the sap in winter. A. J. Downing. (b) Zool. A very small beetle (Xyleborus pyri) whose larvae bore in the twigs of pear trees and cause them to wither. -- Pear family Bot., a suborder of rosaceous plants (Pomeae), characterized by the calyx tube becoming fleshy in fruit, and, combined with the ovaries, forming a pome. It includes the apple, pear, quince, service berry, and hewthorn. -- Pear gauge Physics, a kind of gauge for measuring the exhaustion of an air-pump receiver; -- so called because consisting in part of a pear-shaped glass vessel. Pear shell Zool., any marine gastropod shell of the genus Pyrula, native of tropical seas; -- so called from the shape. -- Pear slug Zool., the larva of a sawfly which is very injurious to the foliage of the pear tree.
<-- Illustr. of pear slug (Celandria cerasi) -->
© Webster 1913.