nav·​i·​gate | \ ˈna-və-ˌgāt How to pronounce navigate (audio) \
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


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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 With over 450,000 employees and 6,800 shops globally, Tesco is adept at navigating the offline and online world seamlessly. Sangeeta Tanwar, Quartz India, "A 100-year-old British retail giant’s thumb rule for Indian firms: Adapt to the digital world," 12 Nov. 2019 They are both motivated, friendly, interested in arts and music, and are navigating the dating scene in the city. Amy Dickinson, Detroit Free Press, "Family fallout affects legacy," 12 Nov. 2019 For 21 days, the college football world wondered how Tua Tagovailoa would navigate this historic showdown after suffering a high-ankle sprain on that same Bryant-Denny Stadium turf. Michael Casagrande |, al, "Why Tua Tagovailoa earned ultimate respect from LSU safety," 10 Nov. 2019 To figure that out, the coalition is researching best practices from other states and will hire a consultant with experience in navigating state-level policy. Rachel Dissell, cleveland, "Achieving uniform lead-safety rules for child care centers is complicated, advocates say," 10 Nov. 2019 The world ends next month, and only one hero will survive to help humanity navigate what’s left. Graeme Mcmillan, The Hollywood Reporter, "Wonder Woman Goes Post-Apocalyptic in 'Dead Earth' (Exclusive Preview)," 8 Nov. 2019 Table Setting Etiquette Undoubtedly the trickiest part of dining etiquette is navigating the table setting—the prospect of which seems to fill nearly everyone on the planet but a pro like Whitmore with dread. Jill Gleeson, Country Living, "Here's Why Proper Dining Etiquette Is Still Important, and What to Know," 6 Nov. 2019 The offense, which was already navigating the loss of quarterback Anthony Brown to a season-ending knee injury, took more hits at tight end, a position that’s been central to their up-tempo offense., "Addazio charged the attrition to the physical nature of the game.," 5 Nov. 2019 There are likely many more animals that navigate by the stars, Dacke adds. Fiona Mcmillan, National Geographic, "From dung beetles to seals, these animals navigate by the stars," 4 Nov. 2019

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

15 Nov 2019

Time Traveler for navigate

The first known use of navigate was in 1588

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More Definitions for navigate


How to pronounce navigate (audio)

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)


nav·​i·​gate | \ ˈna-və-ˌgāt How to pronounce navigate (audio) \
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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Comments on navigate

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