careen

verb
ca·reen | \ kə-ˈrēn \
careened; careening; careens

Definition of careen 

(Entry 1 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to put (a ship or boat) on a beach especially in order to clean, caulk, or repair the hull

2 : to cause to heel over High waves careened the boat.

intransitive verb

1a : to clean, caulk, or repair the hull of a boat

b : to undergo this process

2 : to heel over

3 : to sway from side to side : lurch a careening carriage being pulled wildly … by a team of runaway horses —J. P. Getty

4 : career The car careened down the hill.

careen

noun

Definition of careen (Entry 2 of 2)

archaic

: the act or process of careening : the state of being careened

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careen and career

Verb

Some people might be confused by the warning to not confuse careen and career, because the most common sense of career ("a profession") is not much like any of the meanings of careen. But when employed as a verb, career does have some semantic overlap with careen; both words may be used to mean "to go at top speed especially in a headlong manner." A car, for instance, may either careen or career. Some usage guides hold, however, that the car is only careening if there is side-to-side motion, as careen has other meanings related to movement, among which is "to sway from side to side."

Examples of careen in a Sentence

Verb

the sled careened as it barreled down the hill he careened unsteadily to the couch after hitting his head

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Owners of private balconies overlooking the action charge spectators $164 per person to view the bulls and the runners careening down the town's ancient streets. Aritz Parra, The Christian Science Monitor, "'Macho' Spanish bull festival feels heat from #MeToo, animal rights activists," 6 July 2018 The agreement was the latest twist in a topsy-turvy week for Italian politics, one that on Tuesday had sent global markets tumbling amid jitters that the country was careening toward a new vote and a possible euro exit. Washington Post, "Italy reaches a deal on a new government, ending a crisis that rattled global markets," 4 June 2018 Davis squared up a hard single that careened off Sale's hip in his first at-bat. Chandler Rome, Houston Chronicle, "Astros' J.D. Davis pleasantly surprised by making opening day roster," 25 Mar. 2018 The throw hit Bregman and careened into the outfield, allowing Tucker to score the winning run. Chandler Rome, Houston Chronicle, "Bizarre ending secures Astros' extra-innings victory over A's," 11 July 2018 With advancing age, senescent cells take the wheel, and the human body careens into disease states ranging from cancer and diabetes to arthritis, vision loss and dementia. Melissa Healy, latimes.com, "This drug cocktail reduced signs of age-related diseases and extended life in mice and human cells," 10 July 2018 The problem for Republicans is that both of those positive trends could continue yet be reduced in their relevance for November, if the White House keeps careening into the wrong fights. David Weigel, Washington Post, "What Republicans just can’t seem to get away from," 22 June 2018 While his play always seems ready to careen into disarray, Sexton showcased a sui generis ability to somehow finish a play, either by himself at the rim or finding an open teammate. Matthew Giles, chicagotribune.com, "Ranking the top 50 prospects in the 2018 NBA draft," 19 June 2018 For an unknown reason, Pickett crossed the center line, sideswiped a third vehicle and then careened into the victim’s car. Marco Santana, OrlandoSentinel.com, "Port Orange man thrown from car, dies in collision," 9 June 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'careen.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of careen

Verb

circa 1583, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

Noun

1712, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for careen

Verb

from carine side of a ship, from Middle French, submerged part of a hull, from Latin carina hull, half of a nutshell; perhaps akin to Greek karyon nut

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Statistics for careen

Last Updated

1 Sep 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for careen

The first known use of careen was circa 1583

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More Definitions for careen

careen

verb

English Language Learners Definition of careen

: to go forward quickly without control

careen

verb
ca·reen | \ kə-ˈrēn \
careened; careening

Kids Definition of careen

: to go at high speed without control

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Comments on careen

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