derive

verb
de·​rive | \ di-ˈrīv How to pronounce derive (audio) , dē-\
derived; deriving

Definition of derive

transitive verb

1a : to take, receive, or obtain especially from a specified source is said to derive its name from a Native American word meaning "wild onion"
b chemistry : to obtain (a chemical substance) actually or theoretically from a parent substance Petroleum is derived from coal tar.
2 : infer, deduce what was derived from their observations
3 archaic : bring … inconvenience that will be derived to them from stopping all imports …— Thomas Jefferson
4 : to trace the derivation of We can derive the word "chauffeur" from French.

intransitive verb

: to have or take origin : come as a derivative The novel's appeal derives entirely from the complexity of its characters.

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Other Words from derive

deriver noun

Choose the Right Synonym for derive

spring, arise, rise, originate, derive, flow, issue, emanate, proceed, stem mean to come up or out of something into existence. spring implies rapid or sudden emerging. an idea that springs to mind arise and rise may both convey the fact of coming into existence or notice but rise often stresses gradual growth or ascent. new questions have arisen slowly rose to prominence originate implies a definite source or starting point. the fire originated in the basement derive implies a prior existence in another form. the holiday derives from an ancient Roman feast flow adds to spring a suggestion of abundance or ease of inception. words flowed easily from her pen issue suggests emerging from confinement through an outlet. blood issued from the cut emanate applies to the coming of something immaterial (such as a thought) from a source. reports emanating from the capital proceed stresses place of origin, derivation, parentage, or logical cause. advice that proceeds from the best of intentions stem implies originating by dividing or branching off from something as an outgrowth or subordinate development. industries stemming from space research

Examples of derive in a Sentence

The river derives its name from a Native American tribe. Much of the book's appeal derives from the personality of its central character.

Recent Examples on the Web

In 2017, Mi Cha Jones, owner of the Jee Jee spa in Miami Beach, was charged with two felony counts of human trafficking and one felony count of deriving support from the proceeds of prostitution. Terry Spencer, The Seattle Times, "AP Investigation: Florida gets tougher on massage-parlor sex," 31 Mar. 2019 Instead of deriving flavor from a limited mixture of grains, gin gets its flavor from an array of botanicals. Francine Maroukian, Popular Mechanics, "The Mysteries of Gin Revealed," 10 Aug. 2018 Further Reading The man and the island: Wandering through Jonathan Blow’s The Witness All that said, critics can derive some value from playing in a bubble. Kyle Orland, Ars Technica, "Observations and lessons from two decades of writing about video games," 25 Nov. 2018 Delhi’s anti-satellite weapon is almost certainly derived from PAD. Kyle Mizokami, Popular Mechanics, "India Smashes Satellite in a Surprise Test of a New Space Weapon System," 28 Mar. 2019 The spacecraft going up on this flight are all derived from CubeSats, a type of standardized satellite that’s made of 10-centimeter cubes. Loren Grush, The Verge, "Small satellite launcher Rocket Lab is poised to send up its first batch of spacecraft for NASA," 12 Dec. 2018 The Pentagon said Wednesday that the letters sent there didn’t contain ricin, as initially believed, but instead contained castor seeds, from which the poison is derived. Nancy A. Youssef, WSJ, "Letters to Pentagon Held Castor Seeds, Not Ricin; Utah Man Is Held," 3 Oct. 2018 Tea tree oil is derived from the leaves of an Australian tree called Narrow-Leaf Paperbark. Ashley Weatherford, The Cut, "A Guide to Megan Markle’s Favorite Anti-Acne Oil," 13 July 2018 Most of the profits are derived from the state, where the tax burden is not as cumbersome. Kathleen Gray, Detroit Free Press, "5 things I found surprising about legal marijuana in Colorado," 12 July 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'derive.' 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 derive

14th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1a

History and Etymology for derive

Middle English, from Anglo-French deriver, from Latin derivare, literally, to draw off (water), from de- + rivus stream — more at run

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Statistics for derive

Last Updated

13 May 2019

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Time Traveler for derive

The first known use of derive was in the 14th century

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More Definitions for derive

derive

verb

English Language Learners Definition of derive

: to take or get (something) from (something else)
: to have something as a source : to come from something

derive

verb
de·​rive | \ di-ˈrīv How to pronounce derive (audio) \
derived; deriving

Kids Definition of derive

1 : to take or get from a source I derive great pleasure from reading.
2 : to come from a certain source Some modern holidays derive from ancient traditions.
3 : to trace the origin or source of We derive the word “cherry” from a French word.

derive

verb
de·​rive | \ di-ˈrīv How to pronounce derive (audio) \
derived; deriving

Medical Definition of derive

transitive verb

: to take, receive, or obtain, especially from a specified source specifically : to obtain (a chemical substance) actually or theoretically from a parent substance

intransitive verb

: to have or take origin

Other Words from derive

derivation \ ˌder-​ə-​ˈvā-​shən How to pronounce derivation (audio) \ noun

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More from Merriam-Webster on derive

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with derive

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for derive

Spanish Central: Translation of derive

Nglish: Translation of derive for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of derive for Arabic Speakers

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