\ ˈdīv How to pronounce dive (audio) \
dived\ ˈdīvd How to pronounce dived (audio) \ or dove\ ˈdōv How to pronounce dove (audio) \; dived also dove; diving

Definition of dive

 (Entry 1 of 2)

intransitive verb

1a : to plunge into water intentionally and especially headfirst also : to execute a dive (see dive entry 2 sense 1a(1)) diving into the pool from the highest platform
b : submerge the submarine dived
2a : to come or drop down precipitously : plunge the temperature is diving
b : to plunge one's hand into something dived into his pocket
c of an airplane : to descend in a dive
3a : to plunge into some matter or activity she dove into her studies
b : to plunge or dash for some place diving for cover also : to lunge especially in order to seize something dove for the ball

transitive verb

1 : to thrust into something diving one's hands into the icy water
2 : to cause to dive dive a submarine



Definition of dive (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : the act or an instance of diving: such as
a(1) : a plunge into water executed in a prescribed manner practicing her dives
(2) nautical : a submerging of a submarine
(3) aviation : a steep descent of an airplane at greater than the maximum speed of horizontal flight
b : a sharp decline Stocks took a dive.
2 : a shabby and disreputable establishment (such as a bar or nightclub)
3 combat sports : a faked knockout usually used in the phrase take a divea boxer accused of taking a dive
4 football : an offensive (see offensive entry 1 sense 1c) play in which the ballcarrier plunges into the line (see line entry 1 sense 7f(2)) for short yardage

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Synonyms for dive

Synonyms: Verb

Synonyms: Noun

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Dived vs. Dove: Usage Guide


Dive, which was originally a weak verb, developed a past tense dove, probably by analogy with verbs like drive, drove. Dove exists in some British dialects and has become the standard past tense especially in speech in some parts of Canada. In the U.S. dived and dove are both widespread in speech as past tense and past participle, with dove less common than dived in the south Midland area, and dived less common than dove in the Northern and north Midland areas. In writing, the past tense dived is usual in British English and somewhat more common in American English. Dove seems relatively rare as a past participle in writing.

Examples of dive in a Sentence

Verb She dove into the swimming pool. The children like to dive off the boat. The competitors will be diving from the highest platform. Many people enjoy diving on the island's coral reefs. You can't dive in this water without a wet suit. The submarine can dive to 3,000 feet. The whale dove down to deeper water. Noun She practiced her dives for the competition. This will be my first dive on a coral reef. She has done dives all around the world. The crew of the submarine prepared for a dive. The jet rolled into a dive.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Even the Caterham's sophisticated unequal-length control-arm front and de Dion rear suspension has its limitations: dive into a curve, and hit a cross-the-road rut, and the 7 reacts with a startling kachunk. Don Schroeder, Car and Driver, "Tested: 1993 Caterham Super 7 Blends the Lightweight Purity of the Lotus 7 With A Modern Drivetrain," 28 June 2020 Temperatures will dive 10-15 degrees from Friday’s high as the system moving in from the north is carrying plenty of cold air. oregonlive, "Portland metro Friday weather: One more day of sunny, warm temps; clouds, rain for weekend," 26 June 2020 This update will allow Animal Crossing players to dive and swim in the ocean surrounding their islands. Olivia Harrison, refinery29.com, "Animal Crossing’s Summer Update Is Coming Soon," 26 June 2020 The the first virtual meetings are scheduled for this weekend (Shibley participated in a call Thursday night) and the coalition has yet to dive into specifics. Orion Sang, Detroit Free Press, "Michigan football players hope to create real change through Big Ten Anti-Racism Coalition," 26 June 2020 For those of you who want to dive a bit deeper into Linux, Microsoft has now implemented GPU compute support, which has been supported in hardware (and Linux) for close to a decade. Mark Hachman, PCWorld, "Windows 10's Linux subsystem gets GPU compute and an easier install in new preview," 17 June 2020 The outdoorsy and adventurous can pencil dive into a gorge or wade under a waterfall. Alex Erdekian, Condé Nast Traveler, "7 Easy Weekend Trips from NYC," 17 June 2020 Udemy is another site that offers a seemingly endless number of online courses Dad can dive into. Kai Burkhardt, CNN Underscored, "21 last-minute Father’s Day gifts to save the day," 15 June 2020 When no one spoke up, Corliss decided to dive in and have Landmark attempt to match the $15,000 on its own. oregonlive, "Tigard’s Landmark Ford Lincoln uses a coronavirus-related match to raise nearly $35,000 for Oregon Food Bank," 9 June 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun As many Americans parked their cars and sheltered in place, corn and soybean prices took a nose dive. London Gibson, The Indianapolis Star, "After trade wars and flooding, farmers hoped for a break in 2020. Then the pandemic came.," 6 July 2020 The documentary is a fascinating deep dive into the life of the charismatic Georgia congressman and Alabama native who was inspired by Rosa Parks and marched as a young man with Martin Luther King Jr. in the 1960s. Brian Truitt, USA TODAY, "What to stream this weekend: 'Hamilton' on Disney+, Fourth of July war movie 'The Outpost'," 4 July 2020 As a journalist who did a deep dive into the reviews about Baby Foot ahead of time and who fully understood the good, bad and ugly of the product, I was still taken aback when the skin on my feet came off in large swaths. Courtney Thompson, CNN Underscored, "The cult-favorite Baby Foot peel is disgusting — and it totally works," 2 July 2020 This heartwrenching account by Jack Nicas of one Oakland dive bar, the Hatch, is well worth a read. Esther Mobley, SFChronicle.com, "The chaos of reopening California bars, and a racial reckoning in the wine industry: what you missed this week," 2 July 2020 At The Pool Club, helmed by executive chef Patrick McEntyre, guests can hang out at an indoor/outdoor bar on the 14th floor before going for a dive surrounded by music from a local DJ. Tanner Saunders, Travel + Leisure, "Virgin Hotels Nashville Just Opened — and It Has a Stunning Rooftop Pool," 2 July 2020 Through a series of 1-on-1 and group sessions, participants will take a deep dive into ingredients, learn Korean beauty massaging techniques, and explore various paths in esthetics. Jennifer Ford, Essence, "Peach & Lily Introduces New Mentorship Program To Support Black Estheticians," 26 June 2020 Tom Garrison, who has operated the Uptown Dallas dive bar Stoneleigh P since 1973, is a bit more optimistic. Marc Ramirez, Dallas News, "‘It’s just unbelievable’: Bar owners in Texas are forced to close for a second time during pandemic," 26 June 2020 Still, after the extreme market volatility, investors’ general confidence about their finances and the economy took its deepest quarterly dive in the the Wells Fargo/Gallup Investor and Retirement Optimism Index since its creation in 1996. Berber Jin, Bloomberg.com, "Americans Roughed Up by the Market Still Think Stocks Are Great," 26 June 2020

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


before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense 1a


1700, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for dive


Middle English diven, duven, from Old English dȳfan to dip & dūfan to dive; akin to Old English dyppan to dip — more at dip


derivative of dive entry 1

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Time Traveler for dive

Time Traveler

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

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Statistics for dive

Last Updated

9 Jul 2020

Cite this Entry

“Dive.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/dive. Accessed 11 Jul. 2020.

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More Definitions for dive


How to pronounce dive (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of dive

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to jump into water with your arms and head going in first
: to swim underwater usually while using special equipment to help you breathe
: to go underwater or down to a deeper level underwater



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

: a jump into water with your arms and head going in first
: an act of swimming underwater usually while using special equipment (such as a snorkel or air tank) to help you breathe
: a usually steep downward movement of a submarine, airplane, bird, etc.


\ ˈdīv How to pronounce dive (audio) \
dived or dove\ ˈdōv \; diving

Kids Definition of dive

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : to plunge into water headfirst
2 : to swim underwater especially while using special equipment
3 : submerge sense 1 The submarine dived.
4 : to fall fast The temperature is diving.
5 : to descend in an airplane at a steep angle
6 : to move forward suddenly into or at something We dove for cover.

Other Words from dive

diver noun



Kids Definition of dive (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : an act of plunging headfirst into water
2 : an act of swimming underwater especially while using special equipment
3 : an act of submerging a submarine
4 : a quick drop (as of prices)
5 : a sudden movement forward into or at something He made a dive for the door.

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More from Merriam-Webster on dive

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for dive

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with dive

Spanish Central: Translation of dive

Nglish: Translation of dive for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of dive for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about dive

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