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[in-ter-veen] /ˌɪn tərˈvin/
verb (used without object), intervened, intervening.
to come between disputing people, groups, etc.; intercede; mediate.
to occur or be between two things.
to occur or happen between other events or periods:
Nothing important intervened between the meetings.
(of things) to occur incidentally so as to modify or hinder:
We enjoyed the picnic until a thunderstorm intervened.
to interfere with force or a threat of force:
to intervene in the affairs of another country.
Law. to interpose and become a party to a suit pending between other parties.
Origin of intervene
1580-90; < Latin intervenīre to come between, equivalent to inter- inter- + venīre to come; see convene
Related forms
reintervene, verb (used without object), reintervened, reintervening.
unintervening, adjective
1. arbitrate, interpose. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for intervening
  • But it may be in even less need of a remake: the intervening four decades have cast this film in a highly contemporary light.
  • Here the intervening phrases, with two singular nouns, may have thrown us off track.
  • But in the intervening weeks, little has actually happened.
  • intervening obstacles influence the pattern of migration.
  • There must have been some developments in our understanding of these diminutive people during the intervening period.
  • During the intervening four centuries others have showered her with virtues.
  • Suppose you go out to concert or opera, there are four hours of darkness intervening.
  • In the intervening years scientists and philosophers have.
  • The time for intervening is before the decision is made.
  • Without intervening action, fiscal policy is on course to make matters worse.
British Dictionary definitions for intervening


verb (intransitive)
(often foll by in) to take a decisive or intrusive role (in) in order to modify or determine events or their outcome
foll by in or between. to come or be (among or between)
(of a period of time) to occur between events or points in time
(of an event) to disturb or hinder a course of action
(economics) to take action to affect the market forces of an economy, esp to maintain the stability of a currency
(law) to interpose and become a party to a legal action between others, esp in order to protect one's interests
Derived Forms
intervener, intervenor, noun
Word Origin
C16: from Latin intervenīre to come between, from inter- + venīre to come
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 intervening



1580s, back-formation from intervention, or else from Latin intervenire "to come between, intervene, interrupt," from inter "between" (see inter-) + venire "to come" (see venue). Related: Intervened; intervening.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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