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WordReference Random House Learner's Dictionary of American English © 2020
wave /weɪv/USA pronunciation
n., v., waved, wav•ing. n. [countable]
WordReference Random House Unabridged Dictionary of American English © 2020
- Oceanographya moving ridge or swell on the surface of water:The ocean waves crashed against the rocks.
- a movement of the hand, as in greeting:gave us a wave and a smile.
- a movement or part resembling a wave:a wave in her hair.
- a sudden surge or rush, as of a feeling;
esp., a widespread, typically surging feeling, attitude, opinion, tendency, belief, activity, etc.:felt a wave of nausea; a crime wave.
- a period of unusually hot or cold weather:a heat wave.
- Physicsa disturbance sent out or across from one point to another in a medium or space, without progress or advance by the points themselves, as in the transmission of sound or light:a sound wave;a light wave;electromagnetic waves.
- to (cause to) move back and forth or up and down: [no object]flags waving in the wind.[~ + object]They waved their arms.
- to signal, esp. in greeting, by raising the hand and moving the fingers: [no object]He waved to us in greeting.[~ + object]He waved his hand in greeting.
- to curve back and forth in opposite directions:[~ + object]to wave one's hair.
- Idioms, Informal Termsmake waves, [Informal.]to create a disturbance:tried not to make waves when things were going well.
(wāv),USA pronunciation n., v., waved, wav•ing. n.
- Oceanographya disturbance on the surface of a liquid body, as the sea or a lake, in the form of a moving ridge or swell.
- any surging or progressing movement or part resembling a wave of the sea:a wave of the pulse.
- a swell, surge, or rush, as of feeling or of a certain condition:a wave of disgust sweeping over a person; a wave of cholera throughout the country.
- a widespread feeling, opinion, tendency, etc.:a wave of anti-intellectualism; the new wave of installment buying.
- a mass movement, as of troops, settlers, or migrating birds.
- an outward curve, or one of a series of such curves, in a surface or line;
- an act or instance of waving.
- a fluttering sign or signal made with the hand, a flag, etc.:a farewell wave.
- natural waviness of the hair, or a special treatment to impart waviness:to have a wave in one's hair; to get a shampoo and a wave.
- a period or spell of unusually hot or cold weather.
- Physicsa progressive disturbance propagated from point to point in a medium or space without progress or advance by the points themselves, as in the transmission of sound or light.
- a body of water.
- the sea.
- (at sports events, esp. baseball games) a momentary standing and sitting back down by spectators in a sequential, lateral way to create, en masse, a wavelike effect visually.
- make waves, [Informal.]to disturb the status quo;
cause trouble, as by questioning or resisting the accepted rules, procedures, etc.:The best way to stay out of trouble at the office is not to make waves.
- to move freely and gently back and forth or up and down, as by the action of air currents, sea swells, etc.:The flags were waving in the wind.
- to curve alternately in opposite directions;
have an undulating form:The road waved along the valley.
- to bend or sway up and down or to and fro, as branches or plants in the wind.
- to be moved, esp. alternately in opposite directions:The woman's handkerchief waved in encouragement.
- to give a signal by fluttering or flapping something:She waved to me with her hand.
- to cause to flutter or have a waving motion in:A night wind waves the tattered banners.
- to cause to bend or sway up and down or to and fro:The storm waved the heavy branches of the elm.
- to give an undulating form to;
cause to curve up and down or in and out.
- to give a wavy appearance or pattern to, as silk.
- to impart a wave to (the hair).
- to move, esp. alternately in opposite directions:to wave the hand.
- to signal to by waving a flag or the like;
direct by a waving movement:to wave a train to a halt; to wave traffic around an obstacle.
- to signify or express by a waving movement:to wave a last good-bye.
- 1325–75; Middle English waven (verb, verbal), Old English wafian to wave the hands; cognate with Middle High German waben; compare waver1
(wāv),USA pronunciation n.
- 1.See corresponding entry in Unabridged undulation, whitecap. Wave, ripple, breaker, surf refer to a ridge or swell on the surface of water. Wave is the general word:waves in a high wind.A ripple is the smallest kind of wave, such as is caused by a stone thrown into a pool:ripples in a brook.A breaker is a wave breaking, or about to break, upon the shore or upon rocks:the roar of breakers.Surf is the collective name for breakers:Heavy surf makes bathing dangerous.
- 15.See corresponding entry in Unabridged undulate, flutter, float, sway, rock;
- a member of the Waves.
Collins Concise English Dictionary © HarperCollins Publishers::
wave /weɪv/ vb
- to move or cause to move freely to and fro: the banner waved in the wind
- (intransitive) to move the hand to and fro as a greeting
- to signal or signify by or as if by waving something
- (transitive) to direct to move by or as if by waving something: he waved me on
- to form or be formed into curves, undulations, etc
- (transitive) to set waves in (the hair)
Etymology: Old English wafian (vb); related to Old High German weban to weave, Old Norse vafra; see waver; C16 (n) changed from earlier wāwe, probably from Old English wǣg motion; compare wag1ˈwaveless adj ˈwaveˌlike adj
- one of a sequence of ridges or undulations that moves across the surface of a body of a liquid, esp the sea: created by the wind or a moving object and gravity
- any undulation on or at the edge of a surface reminiscent of such a wave: a wave across the field of corn
- the waves ⇒ the sea
- anything that suggests the movement of a wave, as by a sudden rise: a crime wave
- a widespread movement that advances in a body: a wave of settlers swept into the country
- the act or an instance of waving
- an oscillation propagated through a medium or space such that energy is periodically interchanged between two kinds of disturbance. For example, an oscillating electric field generates a magnetic oscillation and vice versa, hence an electromagnetic wave is produced. Similarly a wave on a liquid comprises vertical and horizontal displacements
- a graphical representation of a wave obtained by plotting the magnitude of the disturbance against time at a particular point in the medium or space; waveform
- a prolonged spell of some weather condition: a heat wave
- an undulating curve or series of curves or loose curls in the hair
- make waves ⇒ to cause trouble; disturb the status quo