1

cleft

noun \ ˈkleft \
Updated on: 10 Dec 2017

Definition of cleft

1 : a space or opening made by or as if by splitting : fissure
2 : a usually V-shaped indented formation : a hollow between ridges or protuberances
  • the anal cleft of the human body

Examples of cleft in a Sentence

  1. The river begins as a trickle of water from a cleft in the rock.

  2. He has a distinctive cleft in his chin.

Recent Examples of cleft from the Web

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

Origin and Etymology of cleft

Middle English clift, from Old English geclyft; akin to Old English clēofan to cleave

cleft Synonyms


2

cleft

adjective

Definition of cleft

: partially split or divided; specifically : divided about halfway to the midrib
  • a cleft leaf

Origin and Etymology of cleft

Middle English, from past participle of cleven


CLEFT Defined for English Language Learners

cleft

noun

Definition of cleft for English Language Learners

  • : a narrow space in the surface of something

  • : a narrow area that looks like a small dent in someone's chin


CLEFT Defined for Kids

1

cleft

noun \ ˈkleft \

Definition of cleft for Students

1 : a space or opening made by splitting or cracking : crevice
2 : 1notch 1

2

cleft

adjective

Definition of cleft for Students

: partly split or divided

Medical Dictionary

cleft

noun \ ˈkleft \

medical Definition of cleft

1 : a usually abnormal fissure or opening especially when resulting from failure of parts to fuse during embryonic development
2 : a usually V-shaped indented formation : a hollow between ridges or protuberances
  • the anal cleft of the human body
3 : the hollow space between the two branches of the frog or the frog and bars or between the bulbs of the heel of a horse's hoof
4 : a crack on the bend of the pastern of a horse
5 : a division of the cleft foot of an animal


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of very fine texture or delicate form

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