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watery secretion of the lacrimal gland, which is located at the outer corner of the eye socket immediately above the eyeball. Tearing, or lacrimation, is a continuous and largely involuntary process stimulated by the autonomic nervous system. Fluid is secreted into the lacrimal lake, the area between the eyeball and the upper eyelid, and spread across the surface of the eye by blinking. Tears serve to bathe and lubricate the cornea, the sensitive outer covering of the eyeball. Typically, the fluid either evaporates or is drained off through tiny canals at the inner corner of the eye, but in times of excessive tearing the apparatus is overwhelmed and tears overflow the eyes.


See T. Lutz, Crying: The Natural and Cultural History of Tears (1999).

The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia™ Copyright © 2013, Columbia University Press. Licensed from Columbia University Press. All rights reserved. www.cc.columbia.edu/cu/cup/

What does it mean when you dream about tears?

Tears often represent the waters of cleansing and release, indicating that a healing of some sort is taking place in the dreamer’s life.

The Dream Encyclopedia, Second Edition © 2009 Visible Ink Press®. All rights reserved.


In a television picture, a horizontal disturbance caused by noise, in which the picture appears to be torn apart.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Scientific & Technical Terms, 6E, Copyright © 2003 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.
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