Word of the Day Archive
Sunday April 9, 2000
bifurcate \BY-fur-kayt; by-FUR-kayt\
, transitive verb:
1. To divide into two branches or parts.
1. To branch or separate into two parts.
1. Divided into two branches or parts; forked.
There it was, a sliver of a million-dollar view: the red towers of the Golden Gate Bridge that bifurcated the waters, marking bay from ocean.
-- Amy Tan, The Bonesetter's Daughter
They were strolling up the paved walk which bifurcated the rolling front lawn of her house.
-- Erik Tarloff, The Man Who Wrote the Book
Riven continually confronts us with . . . visual echoes of its name, such as the giant dagger thrust into the landscape at one point, or the plate-tectonic fracturing of islands out of an implied unity, or even the bifurcate wing cases of the aptly named Riven beetles.
-- Stuart Moulthrop, "Misadventure: Future Fiction and the New Networks", Style, Summer 1999
Bifurcate comes from the past participle of Medieval Latin bifurcare, "to divide," from Latin bifurcus, "two-pronged," from bi- + furca, "fork."