American English

Definition of divide verb from the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary



    Verb Forms present simple I / you / we / they divide
    he / she / it divides
    past simple divided
    -ing form dividing
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  1. 1[intransitive, transitive] to separate or make something separate into parts synonym split divide (up) (into something) The cells began to divide rapidly. divide something (up) (into something) A sentence can be divided up into meaningful segments.
  2. 2[transitive] to separate something into parts and give a share to each of a number of different people, etc. synonym share divide something (up) Jack divided up the rest of the cash. divide something (up) between/among somebody We divided the work between us.
  3. 3[transitive] divide something (between A and B) to use different parts of your time, energy, etc. for different activities, etc. He divides his energies between politics and business.
  4. 4[transitive] divide A from B (formal) to separate two people or things Can it ever be right to divide a mother from her child?
  5. 5[transitive] divide something (off) divide A from B to be the real or imaginary line or barrier that separates two people or things synonym separate A fence divides off the western side of the grounds. The English Channel divides England from France.
  6. 6[intransitive] (of a road) to separate into two parts that lead in different directions Where the path divides, keep right.
  7. cause disagreement
  8. 7[transitive] divide somebody/something to make two or more people disagree synonym split The issue has divided the government.
  9. mathematics
  10. 8[transitive, intransitive] divide (something) by something to find out how many times one number is contained in another 30 divided by 6 is 5 (30 ÷ 6 = 5).
  11. 9[intransitive, transitive] divide (something) into something to be able to be multiplied to give another number 5 divides into 30 6 times.
  12. Word Familydivide verb noundivision noundivisive adjectivedivide verb noundivision noundivisive adjectiveIdioms
    divide and conquer/rule
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    to gain or keep control over people by making them disagree with and fight each other, therefore not giving them the chance to unite and oppose you together a policy of divide and rule
See the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary entry: divide