(third-person singular simple present cleaves, present participle cleaving, simple past cleft, clove, or in UK: cleaved, or obsolete clave, past participle cleft, cloven, or in UK: cleaved)
- To split or sever something or as if with a sharp instrument.
- The wings cleaved the foggy air.
- (mineralogy) To break a single crystal (such as a gemstone or semiconductor wafer) along one of its more symmetrical crystallographic planes (often by impact), forming facets on the resulting pieces.
- To make or accomplish by or as if by cutting.
- The truck cleaved a path through the ice.
- (chemistry) To split (a complex molecule) into simpler molecules.
- (intransitive) To split.
- (intransitive, mineralogy) Of a crystal, to split along a natural plane of division.
- (technology) Flat, smooth surface produced by cleavage, or any similar surface produced by similar techniques, as in glass.
From Middle English cleven, from the Old English strong verb clēofan, from Proto-Germanic *kleubaną, from Proto-Indo-European *glewbʰ- (“to cut, to slice”). Cognate with Dutch klieven, dialectal German klieben, Swedish klyva, and Greek γλύφω (glýfo, “carve”).
(third-person singular simple present cleaves, present participle cleaving, simple past and past participle cleaved)
- (intransitive) To cling, adhere or stick fast to something; used with to or unto.
From Old English cleofian, from Proto-Germanic *klibjaną, from Proto-Indo-European *gley- (“to stick”). Cognates include German kleben, Dutch kleven.