- 1[intransitive] (+ adv./prep.) (of birds, helicopters, etc.) to stay in the air in one place A hawk hovered over the hill. A full moon hovered in the sky.
- 2[intransitive] (+ adv./prep.) (of a person) to wait somewhere, especially near somebody, in a shy or uncertain manner He hovered nervously in the doorway. He hovered over her, waiting for an answer.
- 3[intransitive] + adv./prep. to stay close to something, or to stay in an uncertain state Temperatures hovered around freezing. He hovered on the edge of consciousness. A smile hovered on her lips. She was hovering between life and death. Word Origin late Middle English: from archaic hove ‘hover, linger’, of unknown origin.Extra examples He was hovering anxiously outside. Phoebe was hovering in the background, uncertain what to do. She couldn’t bear him hovering around her. She hovered uncertainly near the front door. A police helicopter hovered overhead. The hawk hovered in the air and then plunged to the ground.
BrE BrE//ˈhɒvə(r)//; NAmE NAmE//ˈhʌvər//Verb Forms present simple I / you / we / they hover
BrE BrE//ˈhɒvə(r)//; NAmE NAmE//ˈhʌvər//he / she / it hovers
BrE BrE//ˈhɒvəz//; NAmE NAmE//ˈhʌvərz//past simple hovered
BrE BrE//ˈhɒvəd//; NAmE NAmE//ˈhʌvərd//past participle hovered
BrE BrE//ˈhɒvəd//; NAmE NAmE//ˈhʌvərd//-ing form hovering
BrE BrE//ˈhɒvəɪŋ//; NAmE NAmE//ˈhʌvərɪŋ//