v. heaved, heav·ing, heaves
1. To raise or lift, especially with great effort or force: heaved the box of books onto the table. See Synonyms at lift.
a. To throw (a heavy object) with great effort; hurl: heave the shot; heaved a brick through the window.
b. To throw or toss: heaved his backpack into the corner.
3. To give out or utter with effort or pain: heaved a sigh; heaved a groan.
4. To vomit (something).
5. past tense and past participle hove (hōv) Nautical
a. To raise or haul up by means of a rope, line, or cable: hove the anchor up and set sail.
b. To move (a ship) in a certain direction or into a certain position by hauling: hove the ship astern.
6. To make rise or swell: the wind heaving huge waves; an exhausted dog heaving its chest.
7. Geology To displace or move (a vein, lode, or stratum, for example).
1. To rise up or swell, as if pushed up; bulge: The sidewalk froze and heaved.
2. To rise and fall in turn, as waves.
3. To gag or vomit.
4. To pant; gasp: heave for air.
5. past tense and past participle hove Nautical
a. To move in a certain direction or to a specified position: The frigate hove alongside.
b. To pull at or haul a rope or cable: The brig is heaving around on the anchor.
c. To push at a capstan bar or lever.
1. The act or effort of raising or lifting something: with a great heave hauled the fish onto the deck.
2. An act of hurling; a throw, especially when considered in terms of distance: a heave of 63 feet.
a. A horizontal dislocation, as of a rock stratum, at a fault.
b. An upward movement of a surface, especially when caused by swelling and expansion of clay, removal of overburden, or freezing of subsurface water.
4. An upward movement, especially of a ship or aircraft.
5. The act or an instance of gagging or vomiting.
6. heaves (used with a sing. or pl. verb) See recurrent airway obstruction.
heave to NauticalIdiom:
1. To turn a sailing ship so that its bow heads into the wind and the ship lies motionless except for drifting, as to meet a storm: The brig hove to.
2. To turn an engine-powered vessel in a similar situation so that its bow heads into the seas while proceeding at low speed.
heave into sight/view
To rise or seem to rise over the horizon into view, as a ship.
[Middle English heven, from Old English hebban; see kap- in the Appendix of Indo-European roots.]
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2020 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
Indo-European & Semitic Roots Appendices
Thousands of entries in the dictionary include etymologies that trace their origins back to reconstructed proto-languages. You can obtain more information about these forms in our online appendices:
The Indo-European appendix covers nearly half of the Indo-European roots that have left their mark on English words. A more complete treatment of Indo-European roots and the English words derived from them is available in our Dictionary of Indo-European Roots.