\ ˈdich How to pronounce ditch (audio) \

Definition of ditch

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a long narrow excavation dug in the earth (as for drainage)


ditched; ditching; ditches

Definition of ditch (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

1a : to surround with a long narrow cavity in the earth : to enclose with a ditch (see ditch entry 1) The pasture was hedged and ditched.
b : to dig a ditch in
2 aviation : to make a forced landing of (an airplane) on water successfully ditched the plane
3a : to get rid of : discard ditch an old car had to ditch their plan
b : to end association with : leave ditched school His girlfriend ditched him.

intransitive verb

1 : to dig a ditch
2 aviation : to crash-land at sea

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Synonyms for ditch

Synonyms: Noun

dike, fosse (or foss), gutter, sheugh [chiefly Scottish], trench, trough

Synonyms: Verb

blow off, break off (with), dump, jilt, kiss off, leave

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Examples of ditch in a Sentence


He drove the car into the ditch. after skidding on the ice, our car went right into the ditch


The thief ditched the purse in an alley. They ditched the car in a vacant lot. They ditched me at the concert.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

After a last-ditch effort, Legend was featured on the account twice. Nicole Saunders, Harper's BAZAAR, "Chrissy Teigen and John Legend Celebrated Luna's Birthday at Disneyland and We Have FOMO," 15 Apr. 2019 Loaded: 0% Progress: 0% 0:00 / 0:31 School bus pulled from ditch following crash Advertisement An Horry County Schools bus was involved in a crash Tuesday morning, and four people, including three children, suffered minor injuries in the crash. Jane Wester, charlotteobserver, "A Providence Day student is dead one week after Buenos Aires bus crash," 24 June 2018 Pyongyang is well aware that in 2014, he was pulled from a ditch where U.S. bombs had chased him, then slaughtered by militants. Heather Hurlburt, Daily Intelligencer, "Trump Pushes a New International Order Based on U.S. Bullying," 22 May 2018 Muammar el-Qaddafi, was overthrown, dragged from a ditch and killed. David E. Sanger, New York Times, "Trump Grappling With Risks of Proceeding With North Korea Meeting," 20 May 2018 If the daily potential of death had no power to deter him, the thought of shooting up sludge from a ditch wouldn't either. Woman's Day, "Why I Abandoned Tough Love Instead of My Child," 1 July 2016 The men planned to dig two rings of ditches around the barricades to stop would-be car bombers. Michael M. Phillips, WSJ, "America’s Other Endless War: Battling al-Shabaab in Somalia," 17 Jan. 2019 There were potholes and rattlesnakes to mind, as well as irrigation ditches. Ella Riley-adams, Vogue, "I Ditched My Phone for a Montana Cattle Drive (and Finally Dealt With My Feelings)," 3 Oct. 2018 The boys were playing in a maintenance shed above a ditch that feeds into the Los Angeles River, FOX11 LA reported. Katherine Lam, Fox News, "Boy, 13, found alive after falling into Los Angeles drainage ditch 'maze'," 2 Oct. 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

The PlayStation 5 will ditch its predecessor’s pokey spinning hard drive for a modern solid-state drive. Brad Chacos, PCWorld, "Why Sony's PlayStation 5 specs matter to PC gamers: Ryzen, Radeon, SSDs, and ray tracing," 16 Apr. 2019 This summer, ditch the string bikini and grab the season's trendiest swimsuit: the one-piece. Fox News, "Summer's sexiest swimsuit trend," 7 July 2018 Love is lost when homegrown country pop star Liam Page (Alex Roe) ditches his high school sweetheart Josie (Jessica Rothe) at the altar during a frenzy surrounding his first hit single. Katie Walsh, idahostatesman, "‘Forever My Girl’ sticks to Southern romance formula," 19 Jan. 2018 In the female-friendly story line, love is lost when homegrown country-pop star Liam Page (Alex Roe) ditches his high school sweetheart Josie (Jessica Rothe) at the altar during a frenzy surrounding his first hit single. Katie Walsh, Detroit Free Press, "Review: ‘Forever My Girl’ is a formulaic romance," 18 Jan. 2018 Shopping 22 Slides Over the past few seasons, designers have offered up more and more reasons to ditch the antiquated notion that suits are only for those who work in corporate environments. Glamour, "22 Very Convincing Reasons To Swap Out Your Sundress For A Suit," 21 Mar. 2019 Then there’s Gretchen (the inimitable Toni Collette), another major player who ditches her curator role for a new position as art advisor, seemingly for the sheer pleasure of annoying her former colleagues. Candice Frederick, Harper's BAZAAR, "Netflix's Velvet Buzzsaw Shouldn't Work—But It (Mostly) Does," 3 Feb. 2019 The iPad Pro is the first iOS device to ditch Apple's Lightning port. Valentina Palladino, Ars Technica, "Tinkerers, repair shops will have mixed feelings about this iPad Pro teardown," 12 Nov. 2018 And in the past week, both Uber and Lime have released some intriguing data that these companies claim show riders are using micromobility solutions to ditch cars and access transit. Alissa Walker, Curbed, "Scooters and e-bikes begin to replace car trips," 24 July 2018

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


before the 12th century, in the meaning defined above


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

History and Etymology for ditch

Noun and Verb

Middle English dich, from Old English dīc dike, ditch; akin to Middle High German tīch pond, dike

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Statistics for ditch

Last Updated

29 Apr 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for ditch

The first known use of ditch was before the 12th century

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More Definitions for ditch



English Language Learners Definition of ditch

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a long narrow hole that is dug along a road, field, etc., and used to hold or move water



English Language Learners Definition of ditch (Entry 2 of 2)

informal : to stop having or using (something you no longer want or need) : to get rid of (something)
informal : to end a relationship with (someone)
US, informal : to get away from (someone you do not want to be with) without saying that you are leaving


\ ˈdich How to pronounce ditch (audio) \

Kids Definition of ditch

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a long narrow channel or trench dug in the earth


ditched; ditching

Kids Definition of ditch (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : to get rid of : discard He ditched the old car.
2 : to end a relationship with She ditched her friends.

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More from Merriam-Webster on ditch

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with ditch

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for ditch

Spanish Central: Translation of ditch

Nglish: Translation of ditch for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of ditch for Arabic Speakers

Comments on ditch

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


something valued as if it were money

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