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cleave

English

Etymology 1

From the strong Old English verb clēofan (to split, to separate), from Proto-Germanic *kleubanan, from Proto-Indo-European root *gleubh- (to cut, to slice). Cognates include dialectal German klieben.

Verb

Infinitive
to cleave

Third person singular
cleaves

Simple past
cleft, clove, or in UK: cleaved

Past participle
cleft, cloven, or in UK: cleaved

Present participle
cleaving

to cleave (third-person singular simple present cleaves, present participle cleaving, simple past cleft, clove, or in UK: cleaved, past participle cleft, cloven, or in UK: cleaved)
  1. (transitive) To split or sever something or as if with a sharp instrument.
  2. (Template loop detected: Template:context 1) To break a single crystal (such as a gemstone or semiconductor wafer) along one of its more symmetrical crystallographic planes (often by impact), forming facets on the resulting pieces.
  3. (transitive) To make or accomplish by or as if by cutting: cleave a path through the ice.
  4. (transitive) To pierce or penetrate.
    The wings cleaved the foggy air.
  5. (Template loop detected: Template:context 1) To split (a complex molecule) into simpler molecules.
  6. (Template loop detected: Template:context 1) Of a crystal, to split along a natural plane of division.
Translations

Noun

Singular
cleave

Plural
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cleave ({{{1}}})
  1. (technology, Template loop detected: Template:context 1) Flat, smooth surface produced by cleavage, or any similar surface produced by similar techniques, as in glass.
Related terms

Etymology 2

From Old English cleofian, from West Germanic *klibajanan, from Proto-Indo-European root *gloi- (to stick). Cognates include German kleben (ankleben, bekleben).

Verb

Infinitive
to cleave

Third person singular
cleav

Simple past
-

Past participle
-

Present participle
ing

to cleave (third-person singular simple present cleav, present participle ing, simple past and past participle -)
  1. (intransitive) To cling, adhere or stick fast to something; used with to or unto.
  2. (intransitive) To be faithful.
    To cleave to one’s principles.
Quotations

References

  • "cleave" at The Century Dictionary, The Century Co., New York, 1911.

cleave” in Webster’s Revised Unabridged Dictionary, G. & C. Merriam, 1913.

Elsewhere on the web

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Last modified on 5 October 2008, at 21:55