Quantcast
Merriam-Webster Logo
  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
  • Scrabble
  • Spanish Central
  • Learner's Dictionary
1

shovel

play
noun shov·el \ˈshə-vəl\

Simple Definition of shovel

  • : a tool with a long handle that is used for lifting and throwing dirt, sand, snow, etc.

  • : the part of a machine (such as a backhoe) that picks up and moves dirt, sand, snow, etc.

Source: Merriam-Webster's Learner's Dictionary

Full Definition of shovel

  1. 1a :  a hand implement consisting of a broad scoop or a more or less hollowed out blade with a handle used to lift and throw materialb :  something that resembles a shovelc :  an excavating machine; especially :  a hydraulic diesel-engine driven power shovel

  2. 2 :  shovelful

Origin and Etymology of shovel

Middle English, from Old English scofl; akin to Old High German scūfla shovel, Old English scūfan to thrust away


First Known Use: before 12th century


2

shovel

verb shov·el

Simple Definition of shovel

  • : to lift and throw (dirt, sand, snow, etc.) with a shovel

  • : to remove snow from (a sidewalk, driveway, etc.) with a shovel

  • : to create (a path) by removing snow with a shovel

Source: Merriam-Webster's Learner's Dictionary

Full Definition of shovel

shoveled

or

shovelled

shoveling

or

shovelling

\ˈshə-və-liŋ, ˈshəv-liŋ\
  1. transitive verb
  2. 1 :  to take up and throw with a shovel

  3. 2 :  to dig or clean out with a shovel

  4. 3 :  to throw or convey roughly or in a mass as if with a shovel <shoveled his food into his mouth>

  5. intransitive verb
  6. :  to use a shovel

Examples of shovel in a sentence

  1. He is outside shoveling snow.

  2. I have to shovel the driveway.

  3. I had to shovel for an hour to clear the driveway.

  4. The snow was so deep we had to shovel a path to our front door.

  5. Stop shoveling food into your mouth.



15th Century

First Known Use of shovel

15th century


SHOVEL Defined for Kids

1

shovel

play
noun shov·el \ˈshə-vəl\

Definition of shovel for Students

  1. 1 :  a tool with a long handle and broad scoop used to lift and throw loose material (as dirt or snow)

  2. 2 :  as much as a shovel will hold <a shovel of sand>




2

shovel

play
verb shov·el

Definition of shovel for Students

shoveled

or

shovelled

shoveling

or

shovelling

  1. 1 :  to lift or throw with a shovel <shovel snow>

  2. 2 :  to dig or clean out with a shovel <I shoveled out the sheep pens.>

  3. 3 :  to move large amounts of into something quickly <He shoveled food into his mouth.>





Seen and Heard

What made you want to look up shovel? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

WORD OF THE DAY

a secret group of plotters

Get Word of the Day daily email!

WORD GAMES

Take a 3-minute break and test your skills!

alphabet-pasta-spelling-help

Which is the correct spelling?

accommodate acommadate accomodate acommodate
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

TAKE THE QUIZ
SCRABBLE® Sprint

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ