\ ˈdəv How to pronounce dove (audio) \

Definition of dove

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : any of numerous pigeons especially : a small wild pigeon
2 : a gentle woman or child
3 : one who takes a conciliatory attitude and advocates negotiations and compromise especially : an opponent of war — compare hawk entry 1


\ ˈdōv How to pronounce dove (audio) \

Definition of dove (Entry 2 of 2)

past tense of dive

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Other Words from dove


dovish \ ˈdə-​vish How to pronounce dovish (audio) \ adjective
dovishness noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for dove

Synonyms: Noun

pacifist, peacenik

Antonyms: Noun

hawk, jingo, war hawk, warmonger

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Examples of dove in a Sentence


The President sided with the doves and worked to avoid war. the doves were in favor of using the surplus to improve the nation's schools and not its weapons systems

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

The move by two men generally regarded as hawkish pragmatists represented a shift in the direction of one of the Fed’s biggest doves. Michael S. Derby, WSJ, "Most New Voting Members of Fed Sign Off on Pause in Rate Increases," 9 Jan. 2019 Running a Hollywood studio means year-round social commitments—red carpet premieres, A-list parties, yachts in the Mediterranean—and Cassandra dove head first into La Dolce Vita. Seth Abramovitch, Town & Country, "The Loves and Losses of Cassandra Grey," 18 Apr. 2019 The logo for the visit depicted a dove with an olive branch. Aya Batrawy, The Seattle Times, "Pope caps visit to Arabian Peninsula with historic Mass," 5 Feb. 2019 When her 6-year-old daughter died in 1970, photographer Graciela Iturbide dove into art, pursuing images steeped in ritual, dignity, and the mysteries of being. William Meyers, WSJ, "‘Graciela Iturbide’s Mexico’ Review: Life and Death South of the Border," 29 Jan. 2019 Newlywed Karlie Kloss was clearly influenced by the romantic flakes falling outside, as the model opted for a soft dove shadow to match her ethereal Dior frock. Jenna Rennert, Vogue, "The Breakout Beauty Trend That’s Sweeping the Front Row at Couture," 23 Jan. 2019 During their first game on Friday, Iran beat Morocco 1-0 on an own goal when Morocco's Aziz Bouhaddouz dove for a header and the ball ended up going in his team's net. Jenna West,, "What Does 'Team Melli' Mean? Understanding Iran's World Cup Nickname," 15 June 2018 Trying to clear a last-second ball across the goalmouth, Aziz Bouhaddouz of Morocco dove for a header, and the ball went unerringly into the corner of his own net. Victor Mather, New York Times, "After Morocco Own Goal, Iran Wins World Cup Slugfest," 16 June 2018 One example popped up with Riveron a couple of weeks ago when a reporter asked how officials would view it when Tom Brady dove for a quarterback sneak. Larry Holder,, "Safety, skepticism come with NFL's crown of the helmet rule," 6 June 2018

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


13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for dove


Middle English, from Old English *dūfe; akin to Old High German tūba dove

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More Definitions for dove



English Language Learners Definition of dove

: a small wild bird that is related to pigeons
: a person who does not want war and does want peace


\ ˈdəv How to pronounce dove (audio) \

Kids Definition of dove

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a bird that is related to the pigeon but usually of somewhat smaller size


Kids Definition of dove (Entry 2 of 2)

past tense and past participle of dive

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More from Merriam-Webster on dove

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with dove

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for dove

Spanish Central: Translation of dove

Nglish: Translation of dove for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of dove for Arabic Speakers Encyclopedia article about dove

Comments on dove

What made you want to look up dove? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


to speak slightingly about or to degrade

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