Definition of sunder in US English:



[with object]literary
  • Split apart.

    ‘the crunch of bone when it is sundered’
    • ‘Alienated from truthful knowledge, and unable to trust perceptual data without supplementary information, the individual is sundered from the world.’
    • ‘But the process is apparently irreversible and non-renewable, and so if physical strain sunders the fibril bonds, tearing the tendon, it is impossible to reform them, at least in living tissue.’
    • ‘According to Orthodox theology, death ‘does not mean the destruction of man but merely the sundering of the soul from the body’.’
    • ‘They are simply sundered, and to bridge them is a task, not a gift.’
    split, cut up, cleave, carve up, slice up, chop up, split up
    divide, split, cleave, separate, rend, rive, sever, break apart, break open
    View synonyms


  • in sunder

    • literary Apart or into pieces.

      ‘hew their bones in sunder!’
      • ‘And the car passes over them, and crushes them, and cuts them in sunder, and so they perish on the spot.’
      • ‘He maketh wars to cease unto the end of the earth; he breaketh the bow, and cutteth the spear in sunder; he burneth the chariot in the fire.’


Late Old English sundrian; related to German sondern.