\ 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

Synonyms: Verb

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Examples of ditch in a Sentence

Noun He drove the car into the ditch. after skidding on the ice, our car went right into the ditch Verb 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 Many saw the last-ditch signing as a sign of desperation from Manchester United, which is without star striker Marcus Rashford until the end of the month through injury, as Ole Gunnar Solskjaer hopes to lead the club to a Champions League place. Matias Grez, CNN, "Odion Ighalo -- The footballer turning Nigerians into Manchester United fans," 6 Feb. 2020 Viasat's service is generally a last-ditch option for people in areas where there's no fiber or cable and where DSL isn't good enough to provide a reasonably fast and stable connection. Jon Brodkin, Ars Technica, "No-fiber zone: FCC funds 25Mbps, data-capped satellite in rural areas," 17 Dec. 2019 Side by side, the Allies and former enemy Germany together marked the 75th anniversary of one of the most important battles in World War II — the Battle of the Bulge, which stopped Adolf Hitler's last-ditch offensive to turn the tide of the war. Fox News, "Allies and former enemy Germany mark 75th anniversary of Battle of the Bulge," 17 Dec. 2019 Armwood made a last-ditch rally with two fourth-quarter TDs, but the damage had been done and Edgewater moved to 13-1 on the season. Chris Hays, orlandosentinel.com, "Edgewater football beats Armwood in Class 7A semifinal," 29 Nov. 2019 Carroll’s suit against Trump can be understood, in that sense, as a last-ditch plea for empathy. Megan Garber, The Atlantic, "The Perverse Physics of Accusing Trump of Assault," 7 Nov. 2019 All that remained was for the Bearcats’ defense to keep the Panthers from making a last-ditch push into field goal territory. Bill Koch, Cincinnati.com, "'Pike to Binns': An excerpt from author Bill Koch's latest book on UC Bearcats football," 11 Oct. 2019 For practical reasons, humans won’t be sending a last-ditch flyby mission to visit the careening comet. Michael Greshko, National Geographic, "Interstellar comet starts coming into focus," 4 Oct. 2019 By Sunday afternoon, any hope of reaching a last-ditch deal had evaporated, and Thomas Cook’s board scheduled a meeting for 6 p.m. to weigh its options. Richard Weiss, Bloomberg.com, "Thomas Cook’s Final Adventure Ends in Early-Morning Liquidation," 23 Sep. 2019 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb To be sure, Americans aren't ditching retail stores altogether. Megan Cerullo, CBS News, "Online spending growth shows mobile phones are the new mall," 2 Dec. 2019 One ship wrecked; another ditched the expedition altogether and headed back to Spain. Erin Blakemore, National Geographic, "Magellan was first to sail around the world, right? Think again.," 19 Sep. 2019 Experienced an engine failure off the coast of San Francisco today during a photo formation flight, had to ditch into the ocean. Bobbed around getting hypothermia and stung by jelly fish for 45min. John Laconte, The Know, "Man accused of Independence Pass snowmobiling scandal crashes plane in Pacific Ocean," 21 Aug. 2019 That scored points with House Democrats, who have long wanted to ditch the tax break altogether. Jessie Balmert, Cincinnati.com, "Ohio lawmakers keep business tax break, lower income tax cut in budget deal," 16 July 2019 And the fact that cash will be around for some time to come isn’t an invitation to ditch digital-payment bets. Telis Demos, WSJ, "Cash May Not Be King, but It’s Still Royalty," 31 Jan. 2020 The former media mogul's decision to ditch the walker Wednesday drew notice from those waiting for his arrival. John Gage, Washington Examiner, "'Limped to the court room': Harvey Weinstein accused of faking frailty as he abandons walker in rape trial," 22 Jan. 2020 However, an even better option is to ditch the takeout and make your own noodles. NBC News, "Cheaper, healthier versions of your favorite takeout noodle dishes," 17 Jan. 2020 Translation: Get consumers to ditch disposable cups and share reusable ones. Shirley Leung, BostonGlobe.com, "To save the planet, I subscribe to a stainless steel coffee cup," 14 Jan. 2020

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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Time Traveler for ditch

Time Traveler

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

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Statistics for ditch

Last Updated

18 Feb 2020

Cite this Entry

“Ditch.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/ditch. Accessed 26 Feb. 2020.

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More Definitions for ditch


How to pronounce ditch (audio)

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

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for ditch

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with ditch

Spanish Central: Translation of ditch

Nglish: Translation of ditch for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of ditch for Arabic Speakers

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