navigate

verb
nav·​i·​gate | \ ˈna-və-ˌgāt \
navigated; navigating

Definition of navigate

intransitive verb

1 : to travel by water : sail navigated down to the mouth of the river
2 : to steer a course through a medium specifically : to operate an airplane navigate by instrument
3 : get around, move was well enough to navigate under his own power

transitive verb

1a : to sail over, on, or through able to navigate the deep ocean waters
b : to make one's way over or through : traverse navigate the Internet via hypertext links connecting information-rich computers around the world.— Stephanie Losee
2a : to steer or manage (a boat) in sailing
b : to operate or control the course of navigate an airplane

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Synonyms for navigate

Synonyms

conn (also con), helm, pilot, steer

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Examples of navigate in a Sentence

For thousands of years, sailors navigated by the stars. How about if you drive and I navigate? I'd need a map to navigate the city. Only flat-bottomed boats can safely navigate the canal. He has learned to navigate in rough waters. The downtown area is easily navigated on foot. She has trouble navigating the stairs with her crutches. It took us 10 minutes to navigate through the parking lot to the exit. The captain navigated the ship. He has had experience navigating airplanes through storms.
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Recent Examples on the Web

Translation: Know your lane, and let those more equipped to navigate certain routes take the driver’s seat. Ernest Owens, Vox, "What it’s like to be black and gay watching the Kevin Hart controversy unfold.," 7 Jan. 2019 Looking at the creatures inevitably results in death (for most folks at least), so our protagonist and her friends are forced to navigate this post-apocalyptic world while blindfolded. De Elizabeth, Teen Vogue, "Netflix's "Bird Box" Sculptor Reveals a Design for the Film's Unseen Monsters," 6 Jan. 2019 The only clear message of that era, and one that can be applied today, is that to navigate market upheaval, investors have to stick to their plan rather than react to wild gyrations and scary headlines. Spencer Jakab, WSJ, "Stock-Market Standoff: Apple Warning vs. the Jobs Report," 4 Jan. 2019 Getty Images Family politics are always a little tricky to navigate over the holidays, and there's no exception even for the royal family. Lucy Wood, Marie Claire, "Kate Middleton Reportedly Waited Until Meghan Markle Left Sandringham Before Joining the Royal Family Hunt," 31 Dec. 2018 Research by Sutphin revealed that in addition to money, many kinship-care givers expressed needs for mental-health care, respite services and help navigating the social-services bureaucracy. Marcus Harrison Green, The Seattle Times, "Grandparents raising grandkids say they need more help from Washington state," 28 Dec. 2018 The hope is that these new, high-tech bikes will spur Uber’s effort to dominate the micromobility space, which is growing increasingly competitive and more expensive to navigate. Andrew J. Hawkins, The Verge, "Uber’s new Jump e-bikes are easier to charge and harder to vandalize," 18 Dec. 2018 Serve is a four-wheeled autonomous robot that’s designed to navigate city sidewalks on its quest to deliver goods to your doorstep. Liz Stinson, Curbed, "Postmates’ new autonomous robot wants to deliver your sushi," 17 Dec. 2018 With two helicopters, a submersible, and custom features built to navigate the farthest reaches of the planet, the vessel is well equipped for adventure. Klara Glowczewska, Town & Country, "The Best Places to Travel in 2019," 7 Dec. 2018

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

1588, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense 1

History and Etymology for navigate

Latin navigatus, past participle of navigare, from navis ship + -igare (from agere to drive) — more at agent

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Statistics for navigate

Last Updated

11 Jan 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for navigate

The first known use of navigate was in 1588

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More Definitions for navigate

navigate

verb

English Language Learners Definition of navigate

: to find the way to get to a place when you are traveling in a ship, airplane, car, etc.

: to sail on, over, or through an area of water

: to travel on, over, or through (an area or place)

navigate

verb
nav·​i·​gate | \ ˈna-və-ˌgāt \
navigated; navigating

Kids Definition of navigate

1 : to travel by water Explorers navigated around the world.
2 : to sail or travel over, on, or through The crew navigated the river.
3 : to steer a course in a ship or aircraft
4 : to steer or direct the course of (as a boat)
5 : to find information on the Internet or a Web site

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More from Merriam-Webster on navigate

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with navigate

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for navigate

Spanish Central: Translation of navigate

Nglish: Translation of navigate for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of navigate for Arabic Speakers

Comments on navigate

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