English Language & Usage Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for linguists, etymologists, and serious English language enthusiasts. Join them; it only takes a minute:

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

22- It was hard work and, as the day ……………, I became more and more tired.
a) wore on
b) wore out
c) wore off
d) wore down

The answer is "wore on": what is the meaning of it?

share|improve this question
up vote 2 down vote accepted

To "wear on" is an expression used about periods of time to express their slow passing:

wear 4 [ intrans. ] ( wear on) (of a period of time) pass, esp. slowly or tediously : as the afternoon wore on, he began to look unhappy. [NOAD]

share|improve this answer
+1. The connotation is that most "wear", damage caused by friction or weathering, happens very slowly. So, to use the term "wore on" implies two feelings; first, that the passage of time seems very slow, and second, that the slow passage is somehow painful or mentally degrading. – KeithS Jun 15 '11 at 14:54

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.