\ ˈdəv \

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 \

Definition of dove (Entry 2 of 2)

past tense of dive

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Other Words from dove


dovish \ ˈdə-​vish \ 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

For instance, Amber Heard, no shy flower, dove into fashion history by walking the red carpet for Aquaman in Pierpaolo Piccioli for Valentino’s jacquard bathing cap and matching gown. Edward Barsamian, Vogue, "10 Best Dressed: Week of December 3, 2018," 3 Dec. 2018 Moner dove into the dark role, enthusiastically throwing punches in an introductory scene – a playground brawl with another student at a prestigious school – that illustrates Reyes' feisty demeanor. Bryan Alexander, USA TODAY, "Isabela Moner will transform from 'Sicario' brawler to Latina heroine 'Dora the Explorer'," 27 June 2018 By doing so, McCaffrey dove into his role as Michigan's scout team quarterback. Nick Baumgardner, Detroit Free Press, "Michigan football's Dylan McCaffrey confident despite QB additions," 7 May 2018 Roses and magnolias, the national flowers of the U.S. and North Korea, are intertwined under a carving of a dove. Annabelle Liang, Fox News, "Singapore Postcard: Summit island hides macabre history," 9 June 2018 Peaceful gestures were unpopular across the board; respondents disapproved more of both hawks and doves who chose conciliation rather than the status quo. Michaela Mattes, Washington Post, "The U.S.-North Korea summit could be Trump’s ‘Nixon-to-China’ moment," 10 May 2018 Students have completed 18 stamp collages that depict images associated with the Holocaust, from book burnings to doves that represent peace to portraits of survivors. Julia Preszler,, "School’s 10-year project to collect 11 million stamps honors Holocaust victims," 27 Apr. 2018 An alarming story in The Wall Street Journal this week dove into the world of Gmail plugins, many of which have the power to scan through users’ entire inboxes. Russell Brandom, The Verge, "Will third-party plugins survive the tech backlash?," 6 July 2018 While international media dove into the troubled history of the Mexican charter company whose plane crashed outside Havana, Cuban media have shied from anything resembling investigations or calls for accountability. Andrea Rodriguez, The Christian Science Monitor, "Cuba loosens grip on media, allows for more independent reporting," 21 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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Dictionary Entries near dove







dove dock

Statistics for dove

Last Updated

20 Jan 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for dove

The first known use of dove was in the 13th century

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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 \

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).


a complex dispute or argument

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Homophone Quiz

  • three-bears-two-of-them-look-like-theyre-whispering-to-a-third-bear-who-looks-chuffed-to-be-the-center-of-attention
  • In order to judge how people felt, the senator's office hired a firm to take a ______.
True or False

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