divide

verb
di·​vide | \ də-ˈvīd How to pronounce divide (audio) \
divided; dividing

Definition of divide

 (Entry 1 of 2)

transitive verb

1a : to separate into two or more parts, areas, or groups divide the city into wards
b : to separate into classes, categories, or divisions divide history into epochs
c : cleave, part a ship dividing the waves
2a : to separate into portions and give out in shares : distribute divide profits
b : to possess, enjoy, or make use of in common divide the blame
c : apportion divides her time between the office and home
3a : to cause to be separate, distinct, or apart from one another fields divided by stone walls
b : to separate into opposing sides or parties the issues that divide us
c : to cause (a parliamentary body) to vote by division
4a : to subject (a number or quantity) to the operation of finding how many times it contains another number or quantity divide 42 by 14
b : to be used as a divisor with respect to (a dividend) 4 divides 16 evenly
c : to use as a divisor used with into divide 14 into 42

intransitive verb

1 : to perform mathematical division
2a(1) : to undergo replication, multiplication, fission, or separation into parts
(2) : to branch out
b : to become separated or disunited especially in opinion or interest

divide

noun

Definition of divide (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : an act of dividing
2a : a dividing ridge between drainage areas
b : a point or line of division or disagreement

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Other Words from divide

Verb

dividable \ də-​ˈvī-​də-​bəl How to pronounce dividable (audio) \ adjective

Choose the Right Synonym for divide

Verb

separate, part, divide, sever, sunder, divorce mean to become or cause to become disunited or disjointed. separate may imply any of several causes such as dispersion, removal of one from others, or presence of an intervening thing. separated her personal life from her career part implies the separating of things or persons in close union or association. vowed never to part divide implies separating into pieces or sections by cutting or breaking. civil war divided the nation sever implies violence especially in the removal of a part or member. a severed limb sunder suggests violent rending or wrenching apart. a city sundered by racial conflict divorce implies separating two things that commonly interact and belong together. cannot divorce scientific research from moral responsibility

distribute, dispense, divide, deal, dole out mean to give out, usually in shares, to each member of a group. distribute implies an apportioning by separation of something into parts, units, or amounts. distributed food to the needy dispense suggests the giving of a carefully weighed or measured portion to each of a group according to due or need. dispensed wisdom to the students divide stresses the separation of a whole into parts and implies that the parts are equal. three charitable groups divided the proceeds deal emphasizes the allotment of something piece by piece. deal out equipment and supplies dole out implies a carefully measured portion of something that is often in short supply. doled out what little food there was

Examples of divide in a Sentence

Verb

She divided the pie into eight pieces. The equator divides the Earth into two hemispheres. The river divides after the bridge. A tall fence divides the two yards.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Yet if Mr Sanders stayed in the race come what may, dividing the Democratic left, that could prove to be a major mistake. The Economist, "Bernie Sanders’s permanent revolution," 13 Aug. 2019 Beeber Bifocal looks great, shimmering, amber-hued partitions of oversize tortoise frames dividing the space. Alexandra Lange, Curbed, "What ‘Where’d You Go, Bernadette?’ meant to me as a woman in architecture," 13 Aug. 2019 Like much in Washington today, Congress remains divided on the possibility of a U.S.–U.K. free-trade deal, particularly over the question of Northern Ireland. Chris Gavin, National Review, "Can the U.S. Help the Post-Brexit U.K.?," 13 Aug. 2019 Bobby Yip/Reuters HONG KONG — Two months of boiling antigovernment protests have divided Hong Kong’s people. Raymond Zhong, New York Times, "Cathay Pacific, Icon of Hong Kong’s Rise, Now Reflects China’s Grip," 11 Aug. 2019 As to whether a country as deeply divided as the USA could come together as one nation under a groove again, Clinton remains optimistic. Ed Masley, azcentral, "George Clinton is on his final Parliament-Funkadelic Tour, but his music will live on," 10 Aug. 2019 Parents brought their infants to her lab 12 times for 25-minute sessions, with the group divided into two. Jenny Anderson, Quartz, "Science says children need a village, not an app," 9 Aug. 2019 The first ended in 1948 with the region divided and a promise of a U.N.-sponsored referendum that was never held. Washington Post, "Inside locked down Kashmir, a reporter finds fear and chaos," 14 Aug. 2019 Tenth-graders and 11th-graders take U.S. History, again divided into before and after the Industrial Revolution. al, "More answers to your questions about education in Alabama," 14 Aug. 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

The long-standing debate over open access to research results has been marked by a geographic divide. Jocelyn Kaiser, Science | AAAS, "In departure for NIH, Cancer Moonshot requires grantees to make papers immediately free," 14 Aug. 2019 But many of the categories that researchers studied—including hospital capacity, health insurance coverage and vehicle ownership—are tied closely to wealth, which results in a huge geographic divide in the United States. Thomas Frank, Scientific American, "Southern U.S. Lags North on Disaster Resilience," 12 Aug. 2019 Pete Buttigieg tells the Des Moines Register editorial board his concerns about white supremacy and the racial divide in America. Matthew Vantryon, Indianapolis Star, "A white nationalist killed a black coach 20 years ago. The horror changed his friend forever.," 7 Aug. 2019 Due to a drainage divide, Telge Road 3 from Grant to just north of Hwy. Houston Chronicle, "Harris County Pct. 4 outlines plans for Tomball area road improvements, pending funding," 7 Aug. 2019 By Justin Wingerter The Democrats’ health care divide No topic better illustrates the difference between the Democratic Party’s liberals and its moderates in 2019 than health care. Nic Garcia, The Denver Post, "The Spot: I watched Wednesday’s debate with friends. Here are my 3 takeaways.," 1 Aug. 2019 The debate over health insurance reflects a deep divide among the Democratic presidential candidates between progressives such as Warren and Sanders and those who take a more conservative view. Daniela Altimari, courant.com, "With thousands of jobs at stake, Medicare for All is a complicated issue for Democrats in Hartford, the ‘Insurance Capital of the World’," 1 Aug. 2019 To bust up unionization efforts, industrial leaders leaned into racial divides and offered better opportunities to white workers instead of black workers. John Hammontree | Jhammontree@al.com, al.com, "Could a new monument heal Jefferson County’s racial divide?," 22 July 2019 That’s an unsurprising divide and result: The league isn’t interested in empowering players to earn more money, but just to sell the product that is baseball. Jon Tayler, SI.com, "Why Isn't Mookie Betts a Household Name? It's Complicated," 16 July 2019

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

Verb

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

Noun

1642, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for divide

Verb

Middle English, from Latin dividere, from dis- + -videre to separate — more at widow

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Statistics for divide

Last Updated

17 Aug 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for divide

The first known use of divide was in the 14th century

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More Definitions for divide

divide

verb

English Language Learners Definition of divide

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to separate (something) into two or more parts or pieces
: to separate (something) into classes or categories
: to give (something) out in usually equal amounts

divide

noun

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

chiefly US : a line of hills or mountains from which rivers drain : a ridge between two rivers
: a separation of people into two or more groups that is caused by different opinions or beliefs or by a disagreement

divide

verb
di·​vide | \ də-ˈvīd How to pronounce divide (audio) \
divided; dividing

Kids Definition of divide

1 : to separate into two or more parts or pieces She divided the pie into eight pieces.
2 : to give out in shares I divided the money between us.
3 : to be or make different in opinion or interest The country was divided over the issue.
4 : to subject to or perform mathematical division Divide 10 by 2.
5 : to branch off : fork The road divides here.

Other Words from divide

divider \ də-​ˈvī-​dər \ noun

divide

verb
di·​vide | \ də-ˈvīd How to pronounce divide (audio) \
divided; dividing

Medical Definition of divide

transitive verb

: to separate into two or more parts divide a nerve surgically

intransitive verb

: to undergo replication, multiplication, fission, or separation into parts actively dividing cells

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More from Merriam-Webster on divide

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for divide

Spanish Central: Translation of divide

Nglish: Translation of divide for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of divide for Arabic Speakers

Comments on divide

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