Bare and bear are homophones – that is, they sound the same – but have very different meanings. Where it is often misused for bare is when it is used as a verb. The verb bear relates to carrying or supporting whereas the verb bare means ‘to uncover and expose it to view’:
He was bearing a tray of brimming glasses.
Steamboats bear the travellers home.
The walls cannot bear the weight of a stone vault.
He bared his chest to show his scar.
She grinned, baring an impressive row of teeth.
The verb bear can also be used of figurative carrying and supporting, commonly in relation to bearing a name, carrying the weight of responsibility (The tenant will bear the expert’s fee), or to ‘be able to accept or stand up to’ (His claims may not bear scrutiny).
Bear can also mean to endure an ordeal or difficulty (She bore the pain stoically), to manage to tolerate something (often phrased with the negative; she could not bear his sarcasm), or to dislike strongly (I can’t bear parsnips).
Finally, bear can mean to give birth to a child (when said of a person) or the produce fruit or flowers (when said of a plant or tree):
She bore six daughters. (bore is the past tense of bear)
Plants can bear flowers and fruits at the same time.
Until the 18th century, borne and born were simply variant forms of the past participle of bear, used interchangeably. At that time borne became the standard past participle used in all the senses listed above, and remains so today. Born became restricted to just one very common use, which remains the case today: in the passive, without by, to refer to birth: she was born in 1965.
Several everyday expressions and phrasal verbs use bear; using bare in these expressions is a common mistake:
直到十八世纪，borne与born都是bear的过去分词的简单形式，可以互换使用。 那时， borne成了上面列出的所有意义的标准过去分词，而今天仍然如此。 Born只限于一种非常常见的用途，今天仍然如此：常用于不使用by的被动语态，指出生：她生于1965年。几个日常表达和短语动词也使用bear; 在这些表达中使用bare是一个常见的错误：
Bear on: ‘be relevant to (something)’
Bear (something) out: ‘support or confirm (something)’
Bear (something) out:‘支持某事’
Bear up: ‘remain cheerful in the face of adversity’
Bear with: ‘be patient or tolerant with’
And bear can also, of course, be a noun – denoting the animal.
当然bear也可以用作名词 —— 指一种动物，熊。
Unlike bear, bare can also be an adjective, and is often used to describe someone or something that is uncovered, or without the appropriate or usual contents.
She padded in bare feet towards the door.
Leaf fall had left the trees bare.
It was a bare cell with just a mattress.
Other meanings of the very versatile adjective bare are ‘without addition; basic and simple’, ‘only just sufficient’, or ‘surprisingly small in number or amount’.
He outlined the bare bones of the story.
They had the bare minimum of furniture.
Here are some tips for identifying which word to use:
if you need an adjective, always use bare
if you want a verb which has anything to do with carrying, supporting, or enduring: use bear
if you want a verb which has anything to do with uncovering: use bare