See more synonyms for swerve on Thesaurus.com
verb (used without object), swerved, swerv·ing.
  1. to turn aside abruptly in movement or direction; deviate suddenly from the straight or direct course.
verb (used with object), swerved, swerv·ing.
  1. to cause to turn aside: Nothing could swerve him.
  1. an act of swerving; turning aside.

Origin of swerve

1175–1225; Middle English swerven (v.); Old English sweorfan to rub, file; cognate with Dutch zwerven to rove, Old High German swerban, Old Norse sverfa to file, Gothic afswairban to wipe off
Related formsun·swerved, adjectiveun·swerv·ing, adjectiveun·swerv·ing·ly, adverbun·swerv·ing·ness, noun

Synonym study

1. See deviate.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for unswerving

Contemporary Examples of unswerving

Historical Examples of unswerving

  • In it were expressed sorrow, indignation, pity, and unswerving loyalty.

    Cap'n Warren's Wards

    Joseph C. Lincoln

  • His plans were carried out with an unswerving tenacity of purpose.


    Joseph Conrad and F.M. Hueffer

  • And yet in the fundamentals of character and conduct he must be unswerving.

  • As such they deserve our profoundest respect; our unswerving obedience.

    Practical Ethics

    William DeWitt Hyde

  • He was a man of prudence and deliberation, and of unswerving decision.

British Dictionary definitions for unswerving


  1. not turning aside; constant


  1. to turn or cause to turn aside, usually sharply or suddenly, from a course
  2. (tr) to avoid (a person or event)
  1. the act, instance, or degree of swerving
Derived Formsswervable, adjectiveswerver, noun

Word Origin for swerve

Old English sweorfan to scour; related to Old High German swerban to wipe off, Gothic afswairban to wipe off, Old Norse sverfa to file
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

Word Origin and History for unswerving

1690s, from un- (1) "not" + present participle of swerve (v.).



early 13c., "to depart, make off;" early 14c., "to turn aside, deviate from a straight course," probably from Old English sweorfan "to rub, scour, file" (but sense development is difficult to trace), from Proto-Germanic *swerbanan (cf Old Norse sverfa "to scour, file," Old Saxon swebran "to wipe off"), from PIE root *swerbh-. Cognate words in other Germanic languages (cf. Old Frisian swerva "to creep," Middle Dutch swerven "to rove, stray") suggests the sense of "go off, turn aside" may have existed in Old English, though unrecorded. Related: Swerved; swerving.



1741, from swerve (v.).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper