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[ney-vey] /neɪˈveɪ/
granular snow accumulated on high mountains and subsequently compacted into glacial ice.
a field of such snow.
Also called firn, old snow.
Origin of névé
1850-55; < Franco-Provençal < Vulgar Latin *nivātum, noun use of neuter of Latin nivātus snow-cooled, equivalent to niv- (stem of nix snow) + -ātus -ate1 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for neve
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • The day after his return, then, John set out with Jonas for neve.

    For the Temple G. A. Henty
  • I've been in the business twenty yea's, and I neve' seen her equal.

    The Crisis, Complete Winston Churchill
  • neve foret terris securior arduus ther,Affectasse ferunt regnum celeste gigantes;Attaque congestos struxisse ad sidera montes.

    A Philosophical Dictionary, Volume 6 (of 10) Franois-Marie Arouet (AKA Voltaire)
  • In order to cut snow, neve or ice to pile on the flounce, a pick and spade had to be included in the sledging equip meet.

    The Home of the Blizzard Douglas Mawson
  • In the evening a field of neve was reached and we felt more placid after the anxiety of the preceding hours.

    The Home of the Blizzard Douglas Mawson
  • At the top of one ridge the snow merged into neve split into small crevasses, nine inches wide and four or five yards apart.

    The Home of the Blizzard Douglas Mawson
British Dictionary definitions for neve


Also called firn. a mass of porous ice, formed from snow, that has not yet become frozen into glacier ice
a snowfield at the head of a glacier that becomes transformed into ice
Word Origin
C19: from Swiss French névé glacier, from Late Latin nivātus snow-cooled, from nix snow
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 neve

"field of granular snow, firn," 1843, from French névé (19c.), probably from Savoyard névi "mass of snow," from Latin nivem (nominative nix) "snow" (cf. French neige), from PIE root *sneigwh- "snow, to snow" (see snow (n.)).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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neve in Science
  1. The upper part of a glacier, consisting of hardened snow.

  2. The granular snow typically found in such a field.

The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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