- to cut (a solid material) so as to form something: to carve a piece of pine.
- to form from a solid material by cutting: to carve a statue out of stone.
- to cut into slices or pieces, as a roast of meat.
- to decorate with designs or figures cut on the surface: The top of the box was beautifully carved with figures of lions and unicorns.
- to cut (a design, figures, etc.) on a surface: Figures of lions and unicorns were carved on the top of the box.
- to make or create for oneself (often followed by out): He carved out a career in business.
- to carve figures, designs, etc.
- to cut meat.
Origin of carve
Examples from the Web for carve
Al Qaeda has never managed to carve out a large chunk of real estate to call its own—in Afghanistan it was a guest of the Taliban.ISIS’s Futile Quest to Go Legit
January 5, 2015
Her new paradigm leads her to carve up shibboleths and heroes alike.Naomi Klein’s ‘This Changes Everything’ Will Change Nothing
November 17, 2014
I sort of got lucky in that I was able to carve a niche for myself.Juliette Lewis on Hollywood, Why the MSM Hates Scientology, and Masturbating to George Clooney
September 19, 2014
In Brazil, there was a microcosmic slice of the kind of public role he is attempting to carve.Prince Harry Should Be King: The Royal Family’s Ace Card
June 27, 2014
Could it just be that prison itself conditions a sort of pavlovian reaction to carve chess pieces?Reading Prison Novels In Prison
May 24, 2014
As for me, I ask no help from any one: I go into the world and will carve out my own way.Night and Morning, Complete
A sculptor was set to work to carve a new one from the ruin.Buried Cities: Pompeii, Olympia, Mycenae
But, mon brave,” said he, “you would find this one a tough swine to carve!Louisiana Lou
William West Winter
Ambitious, light-hearted, he went to Africa to carve out a name in the army.The Strollers
Frederic S. Isham
Alden sat down at the table and began to carve a roasted chicken.Victor's Triumph
Mrs. E. D. E. N. Southworth
- (tr) to cut or chip in order to form somethingto carve wood
- to decorate or form (something) by cutting or chippingto carve statues
- to slice (meat) into piecesto carve a turkey
Word Origin and History for carve
Old English ceorfan (class III strong verb; past tense cearf, past participle corfen) "to cut, cut down, slay; to carve, cut out, engrave," from West Germanic *kerfan (cf. Old Frisian kerva, Middle Dutch and Dutch kerven, German kerben "to cut, notch"), from PIE root *gerbh- "to scratch," making carve the English cognate of Greek graphein "to write," originally "to scratch" on clay tablets with a stylus.
Once extensively used, most senses now usurped by cut (v.). Meaning specialized to sculpture, meat, etc., by 16c. Related: Carved; carving. Original strong conjugation has been abandoned, but archaic carven lingers.