maneuver

noun
ma·​neu·​ver | \ mə-ˈnü-vər How to pronounce maneuver (audio) , -ˈnyü-\

Definition of maneuver

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : a military or naval movement
b : an armed forces training exercise especially : an extended and large-scale training exercise involving military and naval units separately or in combination often used in plural The army and navy conducted maneuvers as training for war.
2 : a procedure or method of working usually involving expert physical movement acrobats performing dangerous maneuvers
3a : evasive movement or shift of tactics permits no room for concession or maneuver— Harry Schwartz
b : an intended and controlled variation from a straight and level flight path in the operation of an airplane The aircraft performed such maneuvers as spins, loops, and inverted flights.
4a : an action taken to gain a tactical end this maneuver almost cost him the nomination— H. L. Mencken
b : an adroit and clever management of affairs often using trickery and deception plaintiffs' pretrial maneuvers may be fashioned more with an eye to deterrence or retaliation than to unearthing germane material— John Marshall

maneuver

verb
maneuvered; maneuvering\ mə-​ˈnü-​və-​riŋ How to pronounce maneuvering (audio) , -​ˈnyü-​ ; -​ˈn(y)üv-​riŋ \

Definition of maneuver (Entry 2 of 2)

intransitive verb

1a : to perform a movement in military or naval tactics in order to secure an advantage The regiment maneuvered for several days before it was ready to attack.
b : to make a series of changes in direction and position for a specific purpose Ships maneuvered into their docks.
2 : to use stratagems : scheme maneuvered successfully to get him to ask her to the dance

transitive verb

1 : to cause to execute tactical movements We maneuvered our troops to the south.
2 : to manage into or out of a position or condition : manipulate maneuvered the cork out with his thumb— Kay Boyle
3a : to guide with adroitness and design maneuvered her guests until the talk at the table became general— Jean Statford
b : to bring about or secure as a result of skillful management maneuvered out of the council the funds to renovate the library

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Other Words from maneuver

Verb

maneuverability \ mə-​ˌnü-​və-​rə-​ˈbi-​lə-​tē How to pronounce maneuverability (audio) , -​ˌnyü-​ ; -​ˌn(y)üv-​rə-​ \ noun
maneuverable \ mə-​ˈnü-​və-​rə-​bəl How to pronounce maneuverable (audio) , -​ˈnyü-​ ; -​ˈn(y)üv-​rə-​ \ adjective
maneuverer \ mə-​ˈnü-​vər-​ər How to pronounce maneuverer (audio) , -​ˈnyü-​ \ noun

Choose the Right Synonym for maneuver

Noun

trick, ruse, stratagem, maneuver, artifice, wile, feint mean an indirect means to gain an end. trick may imply deception, roguishness, illusion, and either an evil or harmless end. the tricks of the trade ruse stresses an attempt to mislead by a false impression. the ruses of smugglers stratagem implies a ruse used to entrap, outwit, circumvent, or surprise an opponent or enemy. the stratagem-filled game maneuver suggests adroit and skillful avoidance of difficulty. last-minute maneuvers to avert bankruptcy artifice implies ingenious contrivance or invention. the clever artifices of the stage wile suggests an attempt to entrap or deceive with false allurements. used all of his wiles to ingratiate himself feint implies a diversion or distraction of attention away from one's real intent. a feint toward the enemy's left flank

Examples of maneuver in a Sentence

Noun

With a quick maneuver, she avoided an accident. Through a series of legal maneuvers, the defense lawyer kept her client out of jail. He led his troops in a well-planned maneuver. To prepare for war, the army is performing maneuvers off the coast. The army is on maneuvers.

Verb

She maneuvered her car into the tiny garage. It took seven people to maneuver the tiger out of its cage. We had a hard time maneuvering our furniture through the doorway. The giant ships maneuvered into their docks. The vehicle easily maneuvered through rocky terrain. They held hands while maneuvering through the crowd. The companies are maneuvering for position in the limited market. Somehow, she always manages to maneuver herself out of difficult situations. We maneuvered our troops to the south. The opposing forces maneuvered quickly.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

But since leaving Hanoi in early March without a nuclear deal, North Korea has unleashed at least 10 reports lashing out at senior Trump administration officials and their maneuvers. Timothy W. Martin, WSJ, "North Korea Fires Insults at U.S., Spares Trump," 15 June 2019 Was this some sort of maneuver as part of his off-the-books investigation, or simply an illustration of how Stan’s loyalty to Philip endures even in the face of his suspicions? Todd Vanderwerff, Vox, "The Americans spends its penultimate episode raising lots of very big questions," 24 May 2018 Getting the backing of enough colleagues to actually take advantage of the arcane maneuver is almost unheard of. Sarah D. Wire, latimes.com, "Rebellious Republicans move to force a House vote on 'Dreamers' despite leaders' objections," 9 May 2018 Regime survival depends upon national strength, and neither isolation nor the goodwill of China and Russia are sufficient for North Korea’s freedom of maneuver. Rodger Baker, Fortune, "Commentary: Trump and Kim Are Both Unconventional. That Might Help Them Strike a Deal.," 2 May 2018 In the skies, Israel has for the most part enjoyed freedom of maneuver, thanks to its air superiority -- and an implicit green light from Moscow. Bloomberg.com, "Russian Missiles Alarm Israel, Stoking Risk of Next Syria Crisis," 21 Apr. 2018 But by early January 1868, Congress had written their disapproval of the maneuver, Grant had offered his resignation, and Stanton re-occupied the office. Lorraine Boissoneault, Smithsonian, "The Political Circus and Constitutional Crisis of Andrew Johnson’s Impeachment," 27 Feb. 2018 The patrol’s use of the maneuver had increased dramatically in the past two years. Bruce Henderson, charlotteobserver, "NC trooper won’t face charges after 100 mph chase, crash that killed two teens," 13 Feb. 2018 The decades-old practice known as tax-loss harvesting, or strategically taking investment losses to offset income, is a perfectly legal maneuver that doesn’t so much dodge taxes as defer them. Asjylyn Loder, WSJ, "Beware the Bold Claims of Tax-Loss Harvesting," 13 Apr. 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Research in the 1960s showed that bats also interpret Doppler shifts, in sounds bounced off of flying insects, to zero in on a meal with high precision—even while maneuvering at breakneck speed through dense vegetation. Richard Conniff, Scientific American, "In the Wiggle of an Ear, a Surprising Insight into Bat Sonar," 17 June 2019 In this scenario, with the salary cap expected to rise to around $109 million (up from $101) and the team already committed to around $90 million, the Nuggets would still have $4 million to $7 million to maneuver in cap room. Mike Singer, The Denver Post, "Nuggets offseason agenda: What moves can Denver make?," 16 June 2019 Those types of actions are not only dangerous for fans, but motorists who may have to maneuver around fans and other vehicles,'' the National City Police Department said in a statement. City News Service, sandiegouniontribune.com, "National City police ask soccer fans to celebrate with safety in mind," 26 June 2018 Launched on December 23 by a SpaceX rocket, GPS III is now in the hands of ground control crews at Lockheed Martin who are maneuvering the GPS satellite into its final orbit, a task that will be wrap up sometime next week. Joe Pappalardo, Popular Mechanics, "USAF's Next-Gen GPS Satellites Will Be a Huge Upgrade...Eventually," 26 Dec. 2018 Rather, most are assessing that the Trump administration is still just maneuvering for leverage and won’t follow through with the full raft of tariffs the president has threatened. Tory Newmyer, Washington Post, "The Finance 202: Stock market shrugs off Trump's trade war," 10 July 2018 Provocative nuclear and missile tests by North Korea last year initially gave Jae-in little diplomatic room to maneuver. Hyung-jin Kim And Kim Tong-hyung, The Christian Science Monitor, "US-North Korea summit draws attention toward South Korean involvement," 13 June 2018 Trump was reportedly worried that Kim was maneuvering to back out of the summit and make the U.S. look desperate. Margaret Hartmann, Daily Intelligencer, "North Korea Summit Ended Like It Started: With a Quick, Chaotic Call by Trump," 25 May 2018 According to the complaint, Shari Redstone has resisted governance protections being demanded, won't consent to allow public shareholders to vote on the Viacom merger, and has been maneuvering to assert herself in other ways. Eriq Gardner, The Hollywood Reporter, "CBS Sues Redstones to Block Viacom Merger," 14 May 2018

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

Noun

1759, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Verb

1777, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense 1a

History and Etymology for maneuver

Noun and Verb

French manœuvre, from Old French maneuvre work done by hand, from Medieval Latin manuopera, from manu operare to perform manual labor — more at manure

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Statistics for maneuver

Last Updated

19 Jun 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for maneuver

The first known use of maneuver was in 1759

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More Definitions for maneuver

maneuver

noun

English Language Learners Definition of maneuver

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a clever or skillful action or movement
: a planned movement of soldiers or ships
: military activities that are done for training

maneuver

verb

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

: to move (something or someone) in a careful and usually skillful way
: to do something in an effort to get an advantage, get out of a difficult situation, etc.
: to move (soldiers, ships, etc.) where they are needed for battle

maneuver

noun
ma·​neu·​ver | \ mə-ˈnü-vər How to pronounce maneuver (audio) , -ˈnyü-\

Kids Definition of maneuver

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : skillful action or management The driver avoided an accident by a quick maneuver.
2 : a training exercise by armed forces
3 : a planned movement of troops or ships

maneuver

verb
maneuvered; maneuvering

Kids Definition of maneuver (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : to guide skillfully Our captain maneuvered the boat safely into the harbor.
2 : to move troops or ships where they are needed

Other Words from maneuver

maneuverability \ mə-​ˌnü-​və-​rə-​ˈbi-​lə-​tē , -​ˌnyü-​ \ noun
maneuverable \ -​ˈnü-​və-​rə-​bəl , -​ˈnyü-​ \ adjective

maneuver

noun
ma·​neu·​ver
variants: or chiefly British manoeuvre \ mə-​ˈn(y)ü-​vər How to pronounce manoeuvre (audio) \

Medical Definition of maneuver

1 : a movement, procedure, or method performed to achieve a desired result and especially to restore a normal physiological state or to promote normal function the simplest maneuver to actuate the normal eustachian tube is to swallow— H. G. Armstrong — see heimlich maneuver, valsalva maneuver
2 : a manipulation to accomplish a change of position specifically : rotational or other movement applied to a fetus within the uterus to alter its position and facilitate delivery — see scanzoni maneuver

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More from Merriam-Webster on maneuver

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with maneuver

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for maneuver

Spanish Central: Translation of maneuver

Nglish: Translation of maneuver for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of maneuver for Arabic Speakers

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