shovel

noun
shov·​el | \ˈshə-vəl \

Definition of shovel 

(Entry 1 of 2)

1a : a hand implement consisting of a broad scoop or a more or less hollowed out blade with a handle used to lift and throw material

b : something that resembles a shovel

c : an excavating machine especially : a hydraulic diesel-engine driven power shovel

2 : shovelful

shovel

verb
shoveled or shovelled; shoveling or shovelling\ˈshə-​və-​liŋ, ˈshəv-​liŋ \

Definition of shovel (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to take up and throw with a shovel

2 : to dig or clean out with a shovel

3 : to throw or convey roughly or in a mass as if with a shovel shoveled his food into his mouth

intransitive verb

: to use a shovel

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Synonyms for shovel

Synonyms: Verb

dig, excavate

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Examples of shovel in a Sentence

Verb

He is outside shoveling snow. I have to shovel the driveway. I had to shovel for an hour to clear the driveway. The snow was so deep we had to shovel a path to our front door. Stop shoveling food into your mouth.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

As any hot-blooded Texan would, her husband promptly grabbed a shovel and beheaded the snake. Christina Capatides, CBS News, "Severed rattlesnake head bites man who decapitated it," 6 June 2018 Bitmain is a miner first and foremost, but also sells what might be termed crypto-shovels. The Economist, "How a few companies are bitcoining it," 19 May 2018 In the years immediately after Franco’s death, a small number of Spaniards quietly began to reclaim the remains of their disappeared loved ones with little more than hands and shovels. Matías Costa, Smithsonian, "The Battle Over the Memory of the Spanish Civil War," 28 June 2018 Eventually, a few police officers took pity, and instead of running them off, lent them shovels and helped them in the desperate task of digging. Mark Stevenson, Fox News, "At Guatemala volcano, families left on own to keep searching," 8 June 2018 Resnick started with a budget of $2,000, using shovels to work her one-thirteenth of an acre. Sarah Meehan, Washington Post, "A training program for new farmers is teaching its biggest class yet," 30 June 2018 The men used shovels and pickaxes to dig down through the debris, coughing as their eyes watered and their bodies shrouded in clouds of ash. NBC News, "Guatemala volcano survivor searches for 46 missing family members," 7 June 2018 Resnick started with a budget of $2,000, using shovels to work her one-thirteenth of an acre. Sarah Meehan, Washington Post, "A training program for new farmers is teaching its biggest class yet," 30 June 2018 On Tuesday, firefighters from multiple agencies cut down trees with chainsaws, sprayed water and used shovels to create a firebreak to keep the fire from reaching multimillion-dollar homes. Joseph Serna, latimes.com, "Evacuation orders lifted as firefighters control Beverly Crest brush fire, caused by weed wacker," 13 June 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

In one of season four’s most remarkable scenes, Jimmy reads a letter Chuck left for him, out loud, as Kim quietly breaks down in tears while Jimmy continues shoveling cereal into his mouth. Todd Vanderwerff, Vox, "Better Call Saul season 4 finale: The hugely important final shot, explained," 9 Oct. 2018 Hettrick said crews were shoveling out the area to prevent it from spreading. Devin Kelly, Anchorage Daily News, "That black smoke downtown? Under control, Anchorage Fire Department says," 7 July 2018 Alex Tuch corralled the rebound and shoveled it over to Riley Smith, who flicked it into a wide-open net. Tyler Horka, SI.com, "Capitals Rally Past Golden Knights in Game 5 to Win Stanley Cup," 7 June 2018 No snow is forecast for the next several days which will allow crews to clear transportation links and shovel out the ski lifts. John Hopewell, Washington Post, "Heavy snow and avalanches strand thousands at ski villages across the Alps," 23 Jan. 2018 But that’s the one thing Republican lawmakers in Washington refuse to do. Congress’s solution: throw money at the problem Since the Parkland shooting, the government has shoveled millions of dollars to schools to beef up security. Alexia Fernández Campbell, Vox, "I went to a huge conference on school safety. No one wanted to talk about gun control.," 30 July 2018 Winter brings lots of annoying inconveniences — shoveling, power outages, and slippery roads. Samantha Toscano, Good Housekeeping, "A Woman Has Been Trapped on an Icy Island for a Month," 5 Mar. 2015 Although prices of bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies crashed early this year, investors kept shoveling money into coin offerings. Paul Vigna, WSJ, "Investors Bet $4 Billion on a Cryptocurrency Startup," 29 May 2018 On Saturday, Moore and a group of volunteers returned to the site of the shooting to shovel dirt into planters and fill them with tomotoes, squash and cucumbers in Thaniel’s honor. Lorraine Mirabella, baltimoresun.com, "Volunteers plant 'guerrilla' gardens as Ceasefire tribute to shooting victims," 12 May 2018

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

Noun

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Verb

15th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

History and Etymology for shovel

Noun

Middle English, from Old English scofl; akin to Old High German scūfla shovel, Old English scūfan to thrust away

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Statistics for shovel

Last Updated

3 Dec 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for shovel

The first known use of shovel was before the 12th century

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More Definitions for shovel

shovel

noun

English Language Learners Definition of shovel

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a tool with a long handle that is used for lifting and throwing dirt, sand, snow, etc.

: the part of a machine (such as a backhoe) that picks up and moves dirt, sand, snow, etc.

shovel

verb

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

: to lift and throw (dirt, sand, snow, etc.) with a shovel

: to remove snow from (a sidewalk, driveway, etc.) with a shovel

: to create (a path) by removing snow with a shovel

shovel

noun
shov·​el | \ˈshə-vəl \

Kids Definition of shovel

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a tool with a long handle and broad scoop used to lift and throw loose material (as dirt or snow)

2 : as much as a shovel will hold a shovel of sand

shovel

verb
shoveled or shovelled; shoveling or shovelling

Kids Definition of shovel (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : to lift or throw with a shovel shovel snow

2 : to dig or clean out with a shovel I shoveled out the sheep pens.

3 : to move large amounts of into something quickly He shoveled food into his mouth.

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More from Merriam-Webster on shovel

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with shovel

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for shovel

Spanish Central: Translation of shovel

Nglish: Translation of shovel for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of shovel for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about shovel

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