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sperno, sprēvi, sprētum, 3 (perf. sync. sprērunt, Prud. Dittoch. 31), v. a. [root spar-, to part; Sanscr. spar-itar, enemy; cf. Lat. parcus; Germ. sperren], to sever, separate, remove (syn.: segrego, separo; perh. only in the foll. passages): jus atque aequom se a malis spernit procul, Enn. ap. Non. 399, 10 (Trag. v. 224 Vahl.): nunc spes, opes auxiliaque a me segregant spernuntque se, Plaut. Capt. 3, 3, 2 Brix ad loc.: ille illas spernit segregatque ab se omnis extra te unam, id. Mil. 4, 6, 17 Lorenz ad loc.—

II. Transf., subject., to despise, contemn, reject, scorn, spurn (the class. signif.; esp. freq. after the Aug. period; syn.: contemnere, despicere; pro nihilo putare, etc.; opp. colere): meam speciem spernat (a little later: se contemnit), Plaut. Mil. 4, 6, 20: spernitur orator bonus, horridus miles amatur, Enn. ap. Gell. 20, 10 (Ann. v. 273 Vahl.): non respondit, nos sprevit et pro nihilo putavit, Cic. Phil. 13, 9, 21; id. Rep. 1, 43, 67: cum spernerentur ab iis, a quibus essent coli soliti, id. Sen. 3, 7: sperni ab iis veteres amicitias, indulgeri novis, id. Lael. 15, 54; Hor. Ep. 1, 1, 98: me animo non spernis, Verg. E. 3, 74: comitemne sororem Sprevisti moriens, id. A. 4, 678: quis tam inimicus nomini Romano est, qui Ennii Medeam spernat, Cic. Fin. 1, 2, 4: veritas auspiciorum spreta est, id. N. D. 2, 3, 9: aliorum judicia, id. Or. 13, 41: prodigus et stultus donat quae spernit et odit, Hor. Ep. 1, 7, 20 et saep.: doctrina deos spernens, Liv. 10, 40, 10: conscientia spretorum (deorum), id. 21, 63, 7; 30, 40, 5: ab eo quoque spretum consulis imperium est, id. 41, 10, 9; so, imperium, id. 8, 30, 11: litteras praetoris, id. 30, 24, 3: consilium, Ov. M. 6, 30; Curt. 3, 2, 18: voluptates, Hor. Ep. 1, 2, 55: dulces amores, id. C. 1, 9, 16: cibum vilem, id. S. 2, 2, 15: (genus orationis) spretum et pulsum foro, Cic. Or. 13, 42: haudquaquam spernendus auctor, Liv. 30, 45, 5; cf. Col. 1, 1, 4: haud spernendos falsi tituli testes, Liv. 4, 20, 11: neque morum spernendus, Tac. A. 14, 40: spernens dotis, App. Mag. p. 332.—Poet. with inf.: nec partem solido demere de die Spernit, Hor. C. 1, 1, 21: obsequio deferri spernit aquarum, Ov. M. 9, 117.