di·​verse dī-ˈvərs How to pronounce diverse (audio)
: differing from one another : unlike
people with diverse interests
: composed of distinct or unlike elements or qualities
a diverse population
diversely adverb
diverseness noun
Choose the Right Synonym for diverse

different, diverse, divergent, disparate, various mean unlike in kind or character.

different may imply little more than separateness but it may also imply contrast or contrariness.

different foods

diverse implies both distinctness and marked contrast.

such diverse interests as dancing and football

divergent implies movement away from each other and unlikelihood of ultimate meeting or reconciliation.

went on to pursue divergent careers

disparate emphasizes incongruity or incompatibility.

disparate notions of freedom

various stresses the number of sorts or kinds.

tried various methods

Example Sentences

We can adapt to new problems in ways that other species cannot. It is this ability that enabled our ancestors to spread over the globe, displacing other hominids and many other species along the way. Our cultures and individual behaviors are so successfully diverse that humans are more like an entire ecosystem than a single species. Barbara Oakley, Evil Genes, (2007) 2008
Since the methods and policies of the Spaniards on the edges of empire varied over time and place, and the indigenous tribes and peoples with whom they came into contact were almost endlessly diverse, Weber was faced with the daunting challenge of writing a book that was at the same time comprehensive and comprehensible. J. H. Elliott, New York Review of Books, 23 Feb. 2006
The place is packed at both lunch and dinner. The crowd, always a diverse blend of athletes and fans, cops and criminals, showbiz and fashion, appears as heterogeneous as ever. Eric Asimov, New York Times, 26 Mar. 2003
Many students, from campuses diverse as Bushwick High School in Brooklyn, New York, and Whitman College in Walla Walla, Washington, had classmates sign cards pledging to vote for "books, not bombs." Liza Featherstone, Nation, 4/11 Aug. 2003
His message appealed to a diverse audience. a diverse group of subjects See More
Recent Examples on the Web In the conversation about diverse representation in media, the importance of seeing older adults onscreen (technically defined as over age 65) has historically gone largely ignored. Evan Nicole Brown, The Hollywood Reporter, 3 June 2023 The North Island of New Zealand, which is on the Māori lands of Aotearoa, is a wonderfully diverse place. Benjamin Liong Setiawan, Travel + Leisure, 3 June 2023 Instead, Wenders shoots the seesawing depths of Yakusho’s face and captures the elegant and diverse architecture of Tokyo’s public bathrooms. Rachel Handler, Vulture, 2 June 2023 And less diverse workforces may turn off customers, who increasingly expect brands to be inclusive. Bylila Maclellan, Fortune, 2 June 2023 Atwater Park is located at 4000 N. Lake Drive in Shorewood, and the beach sits below a large and ecologically diverse bluff, which features plenty of local vegetation and monarch butterflies. Nathaniel Rosenberg, Journal Sentinel, 2 June 2023 Hikers, bikers, kayakers and sightseers will find Indiana’s state parks offer diverse landscapes from cool canyons at Turkey Run to sand dunes along Lake Michigan — with plenty of lakes, forests, trails, streams and rivers spread across the state. Karl Schneider, The Indianapolis Star, 1 June 2023 The Barbie doll was long criticized for its unrealistic proportions, and for initially not representing different ethnicities — although Mattel has since introduced more diverse dolls, and sought to brand Barbie as a symbol of female achievement and empowerment. Jennifer Hassan, Washington Post, 1 June 2023 That hits home in the dizzying chase sequence where Miles, pursued by hundreds of dementedly diverse Spider-Men, attempts to escape the Spider-Man HQ and get back home. Owen Gleiberman, Variety, 31 May 2023 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'diverse.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


Middle English divers, diverse "differing, distinct, of various kinds, several," borrowed from Anglo-French & Latin; Anglo-French divers, diverse, deverce, borrowed from Latin dīversus "turned in different directions, situated apart, differing," from past participle of dīvertere "to separate oneself (from), be different, diverge" — more at divert

First Known Use

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of diverse was in the 14th century

Dictionary Entries Near diverse

Cite this Entry

“Diverse.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/diverse. Accessed 9 Jun. 2023.

Kids Definition


di·​verse dī-ˈvərs How to pronounce diverse (audio)
: differing from one another : unlike
diversely adverb
diverseness noun

Legal Definition


: differing from one another
specifically : differing in citizenship from another party to an action
a diverse defendant
see also diversity jurisdiction at jurisdiction compare nondiverse

More from Merriam-Webster on diverse

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