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WordReference Random House Learner's Dictionary of American English © 2016
cleft1 /klɛft/USA pronunciation
n. [countable]WordReference Random House Unabridged Dictionary of American English © 2016
cleft2 /klɛft/USA pronunciation
- a space or opening made by cleavage;
a split:a cleft in the rock formations.
- a hollow area or indentation: a cleft in her chin.
- a pt. and pp. of cleave2.
(kleft), n. WordReference Random House Learner's Dictionary of American English © 2016
- a space or opening made by cleavage;
- a division formed by cleaving.
- a hollow area or indentation:a chin with a cleft.
- Veterinary Diseases[Vet. Pathol.]a crack on the bend of the pastern of a horse.
1 . fissure, crevice, crack, rift, cranny, chasm, crevasse.
Middle English clift, Old English (ge)clyft split, cracked;
cognate with Old High German, Old Norse kluft;
akin to cleave2
- a pt. and pp. of cleave 2.
- Botany(of a leaf, corolla, lobe, or other expanded plant part) having divisions formed by incisions or narrow sinuses that extend more than halfway to the midrib or the base.
cleave1 /kliv/USA pronunciation
v. [~ + to + object],cleaved, cleav•ing. WordReference Random House Unabridged Dictionary of American English © 2016
cleave2 /kliv/USA pronunciation
v., cleft /klɛft/USA pronunciation orcleaved orclove/kloʊv/USA pronunciation cleft orcleaved orclo•ven/ˈkloʊvən/USA pronunciation cleav•ing.
- to stick closely to;
cling:His tongue cleaved to the roof of his mouth.
- to remain faithful: to cleave to one's principles.
- to (cause to) split or divide by or as if by a cutting blow: [no object]The wood cleaved in two clean pieces.[~ + object]He cleaved the wood in two neat pieces.
- [~ + object] to make by or as if by cutting: to cleave a path through the wilderness.
- [~ ( + through) + object] to penetrate or pass through (water, etc.): The bow of the boat cleaved (through) the water cleanly.
(klēv), v.i., cleaved or (Archaic)clave;
- to adhere closely;
cling (usually fol. by to).
- to remain faithful (usually fol. by to):to cleave to one's principles in spite of persecution.
(klēv), v., cleft orcleaved orclove, cleft orcleaved orclo•ven, cleav•ing.
- Middle English cleven, Old English cleofian, cognate with Old High German klebēn (German kleben) bef. 900
- to split or divide by or as if by a cutting blow, esp. along a natural line of division, as the grain of wood.
- to make by or as if by cutting:to cleave a path through the wilderness.
- to penetrate or pass through (air, water, etc.):The bow of the boat cleaved the water cleanly.
- to cut off; sever:to cleave a branch from a tree.
- to part or split, esp. along a natural line of division.
- to penetrate or advance by or as if by cutting (usually fol. by through).
1 . halve, rend, rive.
Middle English cleven, Old English clēofan, cognate with Old High German klioban (German klieben), Old Norse kljūfa;
akin to Greek glýphein to carve, Latin glūbere to peel
Collins Concise English Dictionary © HarperCollins Publishers::
cleft /klɛft/ vb
- the past tense and a past participle of cleave1
- a fissure or crevice
- an indentation or split in something, such as the chin, palate, etc
Etymology: Old English geclyft (n); related to Old High German kluft tongs, German Kluft gap, fissure; see cleave1
- split; divided
cleave /kliːv/ vb (cleaves, cleaving, cleft, cleaved, clove, cleft, cleaved, cloven)
Etymology: Old English clēofan; related to Old Norse kljūfa, Old High German klioban, Latin glūbere to peelˈcleavable adj
- to split or cause to split, esp along a natural weakness
- (transitive) to make by or as if by cutting: to cleave a path
- when intr, followed by through: to penetrate or traverse
cleave /kliːv/ vb
Etymology: Old English cleofian; related to Old High German klebēn to stick
- (intransitive) followed by to: to cling or adhere
'cleft' also found in these entries: