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delve

[delv] /dɛlv/
verb (used without object), delved, delving.
1.
to carry on intensive and thorough research for data, information, or the like; investigate:
to delve into the issue of prison reform.
2.
Archaic. to dig, as with a spade.
verb (used with object), delved, delving.
3.
Archaic. to dig; excavate.
Origin
900
before 900; Middle English delven, Old English delfan; cognate with Dutch delven, Old High German telban
Related forms
delver, noun
undelved, adjective
Synonyms
1. research, inquire, probe, examine, explore.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Examples from the web for delve
  • Geologists delve into their prehistoric records.
  • His dry, precisely enunciated singing doesn't delve into the psychological murk of lyrics.
  • In a way, if you delve deep enough into history, you can study just about anything under its umbrella.
  • So I really had to delve into their characters to create a unique voice for each of them.
  • We must delve deeply into the ocean of knowledge that is life to find the bright and clear meaning to it and to death.
  • I'm still pretty excited to delve back into my favorite city.
  • To account for it, we have to delve into the prehistory of the universe, to a time before the big bang.
  • This places limits on just how deeply photoacoustic imaging can delve.
  • Nevertheless, the best tales delve deep into human nature, illuminating its darkest impulses and noblest inclinations.
  • Yet the more you delve into the issue, the more nuanced it appears.
British Dictionary definitions for delve

delve

/dɛlv/
verb (mainly intransitive; often foll by in or into)
1.
to inquire or research deeply or intensively (for information, etc): he delved in the Bible for quotations
2.
to search or rummage (in a drawer, the pockets, etc)
3.
(esp of an animal) to dig or burrow deeply (into the ground, etc)
4.
(also transitive) (archaic or dialect) to dig or turn up (earth, a garden, etc), as with a spade
Derived Forms
delver, noun
Word Origin
Old English delfan; related to Old High German telban to dig, Russian dolbit to hollow out with a chisel
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for delve
v.

Old English delfan "to dig" (class III strong verb; past tense dealf, past participle dolfen), common West Germanic verb (cf. Old Saxon delban, Dutch delven, Middle High German telben "to dig"), from PIE root *dhelbh- (cf. Lithuanian delba "crowbar," Russian dolbit', Czech dlabati, Polish dłubać "to chisel;" Russian dolotó, Czech dlato, Polish dłuto "chisel"). Weak inflections emerged 14c.-16c. Related: Delved; delving.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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