\ 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

The embattled leader spent the days leading up to the vote unveiling hard-line campaign pledges in a last-ditch attempt to win over right-wing voters and to draw attention away from his potential indictment in three corruption cases. NBC News, "Netanyahu fights for his political life as Israel heads to the polls," 17 Sep. 2019 Late Monday, Netanyahu visited Jerusalem’s Western Wall, the holiest place where Jews can worship, in a last-ditch appeal to religious nationalist supporters. BostonGlobe.com, "JERUSALEM — Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu vowed Monday to annex ‘‘all the settlements’’ in the West Bank, including an enclave deep in the heart of the largest Palestinian city, in a last-ditch move that appeared aimed at shoring up nationalist support the day before a do-over election.," 17 Sep. 2019 Kristol was trying to recruit a last-ditch challenger to Trump for the Republican nomination. Benjamin Wallace-wells, The New Yorker, "David French, Sohrab Ahmari, and the Battle for the Future of Conservatism," 12 Sep. 2019 In the fourth quarter, the Jets’ four series resulted in a pair of punts, a turnover on downs and a fumble on the last-ditch lateral play that ended the game. Lorenzo Reyes, USA TODAY, "NFL Week 1 winners, losers: Browns look sloppy against Titans," 9 Sep. 2019 Only Grant’s last-ditch tackle at the 10 kept Levine from scoring. Baltimore Sun Staff, baltimoresun.com, "‘Well, it’s there. That’s what we do’: John Harbaugh explains the Ravens’ fake-punt decision leading 35-3," 8 Sep. 2019 Moise Kean looked like finding it but was denied by superb last-ditch challenge from Ryan Bennett with half an hour left. SI.com, "Everton 3-2 Wolves: Report, Ratings & Reaction as Richarlison Double Lifts Toffees Into Fifth," 1 Sep. 2019 There’s a good chance this last-ditch protest could change the terms of the competition before final selections are made, but shifting the rules in favor of Blue Origin won’t guarantee that the company is chosen in the end. Loren Grush, The Verge, "How Blue Origin is trying to rework the rules of the Air Force’s coveted rocket competition," 13 Aug. 2019 Artificial snow, once a last-ditch solution for an unlucky ski season, was starting to become common. Emily Atkin, The New Republic, "The New Ruins of the Melting Alps," 6 Aug. 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Don’t ditch your password manager just yet The vulnerability underscores the drawback of password managers, a tool that many security practitioners say is essential for good security hygiene. Dan Goodin, Ars Technica, "Password-exposing bug purged from LastPass extensions," 16 Sep. 2019 The app ecosystem that sprung up around the Apple Pencil and iPad Pro is growing fast as more and more professional graphic artists ditch Wacom and Windows for Apple and iPadOS. Wired, "The Best Drawing Apps for Every Kind of iPad Artist," 15 Sep. 2019 Slowly but surely, however, rock and pop music made its way into the game-day experience, even though Wrigley never completely ditched its organ music, as other teams had done. Paul Sullivan, chicagotribune.com, "Gary Pressy, Wrigley Field’s organist since 1987, is retiring after 33 years," 14 Sep. 2019 These chefs are ditching the large-scale restaurant group models of yesteryear and instead forging their own paths, creating highly specific, highly personal spaces that feel more like stepping directly into said chef's brain. Hilary Cadigan, Bon Appétit, "Dallas, Texas, Is the 2019 Restaurant City of the Year," 12 Sep. 2019 Quavo joked about selling sandwiches for $1,000 each, so people could ditch the long lines. Kendall Trammell, CNN, "Popeyes says you can BYOB (that's B for Bun) and make yourself a chicken sandwich," 12 Sep. 2019 Another historic development is that Chevy is ditching manual transmissions — every car will use a new 8-speed dual-clutch transmission that operates like an automatic. Jeff Yip, Houston Chronicle, "Red-carpet rockets: Is 500 hp now theadmission price to supercar club?," 30 Aug. 2019 Celebrities like Lizzo, FKA Twigs, and Normani sent the paparazzi in a frenzy while others like Cardi B ditched the carpet. Nandi Howard, Essence, "See Our Favorite Fashion Moments At The 2019 MTV VMAs," 26 Aug. 2019 The performers traded vocals while dancing around one another, before Mendes ditched his mic stand and guitar to join Cabello at center stage. Andrew Unterberger, Billboard, "Shawn Mendes & Camila Cabello Ooze Chemistry During Debut Performance Of 'Senorita' at VMAs: Watch," 26 Aug. 2019

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

14 Oct 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

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