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used in a sentence
2 meanings
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1  —as in:
cleave through
Definition to split something — especially with violent force


to cut through something
  • Large molecules cleave at their weakest points and produce smaller fragments.
cleave = split
Other Uses (with this meaning)
  • The battle axe was a weapon used to cleave skulls or decapitate.
  • cleave = split
  • It has the ability to cleave carbon-carbon bonds.
  • cleave = split
  • The water is going to cleave a channel into the rock
  • cleave = cut
  • Isn't Father imprisoned in a cloven pine even more than Charles?
    Madeleine L'Engle  --  A Wrinkle in Time
  • cloven = split
  • When Achilles puts on his helmet and cleaves his red path through the field, the hearts of common men swell in their chests.
    Madeline Miller  --  Circe
  • cleaves = splits or cuts through
  • —a blow from a spade cleaves through his face.
    Erich Maria Remarque  --  All Quiet on the Western Front
  • cleaves = splits or cuts through
  • Sanaubar had taken one glance at the baby in Ali's arms, seen the cleft lip, and barked a bitter laughter.
    Khaled Hosseini  --  The Kite Runner
  • cleft = split or divided
    (editor's note:  Cleft is the past tense of cleave like left is past tense of leave.)
  • And herself, swimming in easy practised strokes after him cleaving her way through the water but knowing, only too surely, that she wouldn't be in time...
    Agatha Christie  --  And Then There Were None
  • cleaving = cutting
  • I had a surgery to fix my cleft palate when I was a baby, and then a second cleft surgery when I was four, but I still have a hole in the roof of my mouth.
    R.J. Palacio  --  Wonder
cleft = split or divided
(editor's note:  Cleft is the past tense of cleave like left is past tense of leave.)

Dictionary / pronunciation — Google®Dictionary list —®
2  —as in:
cleave to
Definition to hold firmly to something — such as an object, a person or idea
  • The New Testament quotes the Old Testament twice in saying, "Therefore a man leaves his father and his mother and cleaves to this wife, and they become one flesh."
cleaves = holds firmly
Other Uses (with this meaning)
  • She was taught that she must cleave to God.
  • cleave = hold firmly
  • Therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave unto his wife: and they shall be one flesh.
    Genesis 2:23 (KJV)
  • cleave = hold firmly
  • And this thy son's blood cleaving to my blade
    Shakespeare  --  King Henry VI, Part 3
  • cleaving = holding firmly
  • whatever I ought to have done, my duty now is plainly to love him and to cleave to him
    Anne Bronte  --  The Tenant of Wildfell Hall
  • cleave = hold firmly
  • Beware, Goody Proctor—cleave to no faith when faith brings blood.
    Arthur Miller  --  The Crucible
  • cleave = hold firmly
  • "One time I asked her to have a chew and she said no thanks, that—chewing gum cleaved to her palate and rendered her speechless," said Jem carefully.
    Harper Lee  --  To Kill a Mockingbird
  • cleaved = stuck (held tightly)
  • Shadowhunters cleave to no single religion, and in turn all religions assist us in our battle.
    Cassandra Clare  --  City of Bones
  • cleave = hold firmly
  • He struggled against his thirst till his tongue clave to the roof of his mouth; then, no longer able to resist, he called out.
    Alexandre Dumas  --  The Count of Monte Cristo
  • 34:3 And his soul clave unto Dinah the daughter of Jacob, and he loved the damsel, and spake kindly unto the damsel.
    The Bible  --  Genesis

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