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Meaning & Definition of Drift in English

English

Drift

/drɪft/

noun

1. A force that moves something along

    synonym:
  • drift
  • ,
  • impetus
  • ,
  • impulsion

2. The gradual departure from an intended course due to external influences (as a ship or plane)

    synonym:
  • drift

3. A process of linguistic change over a period of time

    synonym:
  • drift

4. A large mass of material that is heaped up by the wind or by water currents

    synonym:
  • drift

5. A general tendency to change (as of opinion)

  • "Not openly liberal but that is the trend of the book"
  • "A broad movement of the electorate to the right"
    synonym:
  • drift
  • ,
  • trend
  • ,
  • movement

6. The pervading meaning or tenor

  • "Caught the general drift of the conversation"
    synonym:
  • drift
  • ,
  • purport

7. A horizontal (or nearly horizontal) passageway in a mine

  • "They dug a drift parallel with the vein"
    synonym:
  • drift
  • ,
  • heading
  • ,
  • gallery

verb

1. Be in motion due to some air or water current

  • "The leaves were blowing in the wind"
  • "The boat drifted on the lake"
  • "The sailboat was adrift on the open sea"
  • "The shipwrecked boat drifted away from the shore"
    synonym:
  • float
  • ,
  • drift
  • ,
  • be adrift
  • ,
  • blow

2. Wander from a direct course or at random

  • "The child strayed from the path and her parents lost sight of her"
  • "Don't drift from the set course"
    synonym:
  • stray
  • ,
  • err
  • ,
  • drift

3. Move about aimlessly or without any destination, often in search of food or employment

  • "The gypsies roamed the woods"
  • "Roving vagabonds"
  • "The wandering jew"
  • "The cattle roam across the prairie"
  • "The laborers drift from one town to the next"
  • "They rolled from town to town"
    synonym:
  • roll
  • ,
  • wander
  • ,
  • swan
  • ,
  • stray
  • ,
  • tramp
  • ,
  • roam
  • ,
  • cast
  • ,
  • ramble
  • ,
  • rove
  • ,
  • range
  • ,
  • drift
  • ,
  • vagabond

4. Vary or move from a fixed point or course

  • "Stock prices are drifting higher"
    synonym:
  • drift

5. Live unhurriedly, irresponsibly, or freely

  • "My son drifted around for years in california before going to law school"
    synonym:
  • freewheel
  • ,
  • drift

6. Move in an unhurried fashion

  • "The unknown young man drifted among the invited guests"
    synonym:
  • drift

7. Cause to be carried by a current

  • "Drift the boats downstream"
    synonym:
  • drift

8. Drive slowly and far afield for grazing

  • "Drift the cattle herds westwards"
    synonym:
  • drift

9. Be subject to fluctuation

  • "The stock market drifted upward"
    synonym:
  • drift

10. Be piled up in banks or heaps by the force of wind or a current

  • "Snow drifting several feet high"
  • "Sand drifting like snow"
    synonym:
  • drift