Main definitions of split in English

: split1Split2

split1

verb

  • 1Break or cause to break forcibly into parts, especially into halves or along the grain.

    no object ‘the ice cracked and split’
    with object ‘split and toast the muffins’
    • ‘It turned its lights back on, suddenly splitting in two.’
    • ‘A mineral that has cleavage will break or split along planes.’
    • ‘The smaller berries are also usually less liable to congestion and compression within the bunch, and are therefore less likely to split or suffer spoilage as a result of fungal diseases or bacteria.’
    • ‘This really made me laugh reading this, and now my cold sore's split on my lip and it's bleeding again.’
    • ‘Then Gondwanaland itself split to form what we now know as South America, Africa and Madagascar.’
    • ‘Some barley heads have split already, the beaded kernels fallen at the urging of the sun's heat.’
    • ‘Warping, splitting along the grain, the breaking apart of joins, the flaking of paint and ground from the wooden substrate, and insect damage are all commonly encountered.’
    • ‘The statue began to split apart down the middle.’
    • ‘One tossed the stuff I'd just split on the woodpile while the other set another piece up on the block.’
    • ‘After the appropriate treatment period, the pods were removed from the plant, placed onto ice, and split along the suture.’
    • ‘The kernels split lengthwise so the white inside of the kernel is visible.’
    • ‘The greatest danger is death from a sudden split in the aorta.’
    • ‘The intensity caused him to rip at the fabric which tore, splitting at the seam.’
    • ‘Thermal expansion and contraction of rock occurs between day and night time as temperatures fluctuate, generating sheeting of the outer layers of blocks and the sudden splitting of boulders.’
    • ‘Alternatively, if you are cooking for two it is simply split in half.’
    • ‘Then, when the sun goes down, the outer bark may freeze too quickly and split on the side last facing the sun.’
    • ‘The berries then swell suddenly and often split, resulting in fungal and bacterial infection of the bunches.’
    • ‘I opened up my packet of cookies and split one in half.’
    • ‘First, be sure that the plant will respond to being split; not everything does, herbaceous peonies being a prime example.’
    • ‘The wooden barrel guard was split along half its length and the barrel itself was badly corroded.’
    break, chop, cut, hew, lop, cleave
    break apart, fracture, rupture, fissure, snap, come apart, splinter
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1 Remove or be removed by breaking, separating, or dividing.
      no object ‘a group of Nottinghamshire miners split away to create a separate union’
      • ‘When New Zealand split away from the supercontinent Gondwana some 80 million years ago, its flora and fauna were left to develop in isolation.’
      • ‘As the train surged on through the station the rear carriage split off and careered into the platform, scattering waiting travellers.’
      • ‘If they decide to split off from the Episcopal Church as now constituted, these groups have an excellent opportunity to survive and prosper.’
      • ‘The division was split off as a separate company in 1871.’
      • ‘The strongly growing branches that are produced as a result of drastic pruning have poor attachment to the main stem and are likely to split off and fall if left to grow too long and heavy.’
      • ‘When membranes split off, the result can be disastrous.’
      • ‘Lackawanna County was split off from Luzerne on 13 August 1878.’
      • ‘But the monotremes probably split away from this main line of evolution early on, in the late Jurassic or early Cretaceous.’
      • ‘And, of course, there were those who said they would split away from the church when they decided to ordain women.’
      • ‘Early humans split off from a common ancestor shared with chimpanzees between five and eight million years ago.’
      • ‘As a science developed, it split off from philosophy.’
      • ‘Icebergs split off from the towering ice-cliffs with deafening roars.’
      • ‘In 1960, the Gujarati-speaking areas of Bombay were split off to form the present-day Gujarat.’
      • ‘Meanwhile, the material management operation was split off into a separate company.’
      • ‘They have disapproved of the way the chief spokesman was appointed as well as the manner in which some constituents split away and held separate meetings.’
      • ‘Archaea split off from bacteria some four billion years ago.’
      • ‘The first Assembly, in Edinburgh in 1560, was addressed by one of the Kirk's founders, John Knox, as the new church split away from the Catholic Church.’
      • ‘Younger members gradually split off, building a separate house in the neighborhood.’
      • ‘The blast caused a seismic rupture that split off a sizable part of Canada and created what we now know as Vancouver Island.’
      • ‘A few lengths were split off from a short section of 2x4, twisting and levering on the knife to pop them loose.’
      break up, separate, part, part company, become estranged, reach a parting of the ways
      View synonyms
    2. 1.2 Divide or cause to divide into parts or elements.
      no object ‘the river had split into a number of channels’
      ‘splitting water into oxygen and hydrogen’
      • ‘The cotton country on this farm is split into two separate developments of about 1250 acres each.’
      • ‘Sozopol is split into two main parts: the old town and new town - known as Harmanite.’
      • ‘Classes, which last for 45 minutes, are split into separate sessions for babies, one- to two-year-olds, and two- to four-year-olds.’
      • ‘The water molecule is split into hydrogen ions (positively charged atoms) and oxygen.’
      • ‘It takes energy to split the water molecule and release hydrogen, but that energy is later recovered during oxidation to produce water.’
      • ‘It left me absolutely dumbfounded to see the 25-foot high walls, to see how towns have been split into two.’
      • ‘The development will be split into five separate blocks.’
      • ‘He welcomed another measure now set to be adopted by the agency, under which the westbound carriageway will be split into two separate lanes.’
      • ‘The program is split into three separate phases.’
      • ‘Her hair was pulled back into a large ponytail which was split into five separate braids.’
      • ‘Under the new scheme, the town centre will be split into 12 different zones which council bosses claim could be cleared in minutes.’
      • ‘The playing field is split into three separate areas: surface, air, and underground.’
      • ‘But when did the Olympics split into separate Summer and Winter Games, and where were the first Winter Olympics held?’
      • ‘After much debate, it was split into two separate and distinct countries.’
      • ‘The retail business of both his Florida and New Mexico stores was split evenly between new and pre-owned vehicles.’
      • ‘The response was split evenly - 44 percent didn't work; 44 percent did work.’
      • ‘The exam is split into 10 separate tests, which last from two minutes to 18 minutes.’
      • ‘The flow of coolant when entering our heatsink base is split into six separate channels and two separate directions.’
      • ‘This resulted in two items being added, no items being dropped, one item being split into two separate items, and one item having minor wording changes.’
      • ‘This electricity splits the water molecules in an electrolyte, producing hydrogen.’
      fork, divide in two, divide, bifurcate, go in different directions, diverge, branch
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    3. 1.3with object Divide and share (something, especially resources or responsibilities)
      ‘they met up and split the booty’
      • ‘By splitting your investment between the stocks of two different companies, you reduce the potential risk to your portfolio.’
      • ‘For their first date, he invited her to split a bottle of whiskey under a highway overpass.’
      • ‘We paid for the fish, and Gwen grabbed a soda for herself and me to split before we headed out to her car.’
      • ‘After only 5 hours one of the porters felt he did not want to carry on, so we split the load between the five of us and entered the bush walking along narrow tracks with deer jumping around ahead of us.’
      • ‘We then split the responsibility in terms of who does what.’
      • ‘Are the two of you planning to split incomes/job responsibilities in the future?’
      • ‘She wouldn't have to live in Dulles full time; she could split her duties between New York and Virginia.’
      • ‘The couple now split the childcare duties, although Hough insists that her husband is the better parent.’
      • ‘But splitting his responsibilities with another MP would at least save him the indignity of being sacked.’
      • ‘Friday night I had a massage, then a boy came over and we split a bottle of red wine on my back step.’
      • ‘Next, inform them it is traditional in your country to split a bottle of liquor when strangers meet.’
      • ‘Currently, the federal and state governments split the responsibility for hospitals, community care and doctors.’
      • ‘Stalin urged that the invasion should be launched as early as possible so that the Germans would be forced to split their resources between the Eastern and Western fronts.’
      • ‘Suppose a couple agrees to split their assets, with one taking cash and the other taking mutual funds and stocks.’
      • ‘Why didn't you work together with the other pirates and just split the booty?’
      • ‘The result is that D's share is split between B and C, so that each gets €180,000.’
      • ‘We all drink litres of iced water and then we split the bill - usually about £1 each.’
      • ‘Arrangements had been made for splitting the booty, and discussions had been held on future joint operations.’
      • ‘Balloons cost between 3 and 4 million and pilots often form syndicates to split the cost and share balloons.’
      • ‘Songwriting duties are split between the foursome with Liam weighing in with three decent enough efforts.’
      share, share out, divide, divide up, apportion, allocate, allot, distribute, dole out, parcel out, measure out
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    4. 1.4with object Cause the fission of (an atom)
      ‘it could ultimately prove as significant an achievement as splitting the atom’
      • ‘The only relief in this mass of subatomic neutrons, are the admittedly fascinating portraits of the oddball scientists who split the atom and paved the way for the nuclear bomb.’
      • ‘A fission weapon consequently works through the creation of an uncontrolled nuclear reaction, which literally splits the atoms.’
      • ‘It is unpredictable, and it is the equivalent of splitting the atom on the molecular level, and we all know what harm nuclear technologies have wrought.’
      • ‘Ask a New Zealander who split the atom and they'll tell you it was Ernest Rutherford.’
      • ‘The greatest challenge to mankind is not to split the atom or climb the highest mountain.’
      • ‘It will be powered by a fission reactor that will split uranium atoms, releasing heat that can be converted into electricity.’
      • ‘We can split the atom and land a rocket on Mars, but sanity and civilization are a delicate edifice of reason over a maelstrom of envy, insecurity, and terror.’
      • ‘An equivalent amount of energy would be necessary to split the atom apart.’
      • ‘Then your scientists stumbled upon the atom bomb, split the atom.’
      • ‘It all started with the discovery of the atom, and how splitting it could release vast amounts of energy.’
      • ‘A woman could head a corporation and split the atom, but her appearance as a bride is still seen as her moment of triumph and the pinnacle of her career.’
      • ‘Today's power plants were commissioned to split atoms for not more than four decades.’
      • ‘Like the atoms that must be split for a fission bomb to explode, modern-day Lahore is itself divided: between old and new, rich and poor, conservative and liberal.’
      • ‘Our own Ernest Walton split the atom using something remarkably similar, but it all sounds so, well, physical, doesn't it?’
      • ‘Individuals can have key roles to play - Stephenson built the first steam engine, Rutherford split the atom, Fleming discovered penicillin.’
      • ‘Seventy years ago, it was thought to be absolutely impossible to split the atom.’
      • ‘Now that we know how to split atoms, splice genes, clone life and swap parts, what shall we do with that knowledge?’
      • ‘He split the atom, he demonstrated the shape of it with its nucleus and orbiting electrons.’
      • ‘We've conquered outer space, but not inner space; we've cleaned up the air, but polluted the soul; we've split the atom, but not our prejudice.’
      • ‘Einstein said that ever since the atom was split, the world has changed irrevocably, except the way we think.’
  • 2(with reference to a group of people) divide into two or more groups.

    no object ‘let's split up and find the other two’
    with object ‘once again the family was split up’
    • ‘They are not happy at a plan to split tutor groups, so they will be mixed in age.’
    • ‘Then children and adults split into separate programs, coming together for certain classes and performances designed for everyone.’
    • ‘They would split up at earliest opportunity and the rival students would be forced to split into smaller groups as they tried to find the intruders.’
    • ‘The 70 that turned up were split up to play in two matches against each other.’
    • ‘The family won an appeal in February, ruling that the family should not be split up.’
    • ‘The decision to split the group follows a review started last year.’
    • ‘The family would have been split up at a time when we most needed one another.’
    • ‘Paris and I suffered through Geometry together, splitting up afterwards so that she could go to art and I could go to orchestra.’
    • ‘Ultimately, the aim of such riding is to split the group, the hope being that one or two contenders for the yellow jersey may thus be left behind.’
    • ‘It is very much a hero based game, but there is unit control, as well, there are times when it advisable to split your group into two and have them behave separately.’
    • ‘I can totally understand why the current residents are upset about being split up.’
    • ‘If you're worried that by telling someone you risk the chance of your family being split up and you being taking into care it's worth remembering that this rarely happens and is actually really unusual.’
    • ‘The pupils then split up into different groups to work on each place.’
    • ‘Next year we need to split the groups to accommodate a more intense and effective training schedule.’
    • ‘The group was split in two with half getting statins and the other half getting a ‘placebo’.’
    • ‘It got so bad that we were faced with eviction and the family would have been split up.’
    • ‘They have all been split up and sent to other homes, so we have promised to keep in touch.’
    • ‘The residents promise that they are highly responsible and long to stay together rather than be split up into different homes.’
    • ‘She said students and teachers at the school are being split up and will attend a variety of other elementary schools next September.’
    • ‘We still don't really understand why we split the groups up, but we just did.’
    1. 2.1no object End a marriage or an emotional or working relationship.
      ‘after the band split up Tex became a railway clerk’
      • ‘Jane split up with him while pregnant, certain it wouldn't work out.’
      • ‘And she told him that a few years earlier she had split up with a man because he wanted to marry her and she didn't want to.’
      • ‘He split up with his wife after moving back to York, and has been unable to hold down a job because of his condition.’
      • ‘Her last guy, Mark, had split up with her a week ago.’
      • ‘After he split up with his wife at the beginning of the year, his life spiralled out of control.’
      • ‘Readers don't need to know what bloggers had for breakfast or whether they have split up with their girlfriend or not.’
      • ‘She had later married, but split up with her husband in 1989.’
      • ‘The lack of legal protection also means that many men who have split up with the mothers of their children have been frozen out of their children's upbringing, and have to go to court if they want to get access.’
      • ‘Only consider it if you would have no major problem with splitting up with your current partner anyway.’
      • ‘It is a few days before Valentine's Day and he has recently split up with Clementine after a relationship that lasted a year.’
      • ‘Uncle David split up with his girlfriend today.’
      • ‘I split up with the girl after about thirteen months.’
      • ‘She was thought to have recently split up with her boyfriend but had been enjoying regular nights out with friends.’
      • ‘At the time, I sort of dismissed it, but, after I had split up with my boyfriend, I kept thinking about it.’
      • ‘If you split up with your partner, you should contact your bank regarding the joint account as soon as possible.’
      • ‘Last year, she split up with her husband of fourteen years.’
      • ‘He was £17,000 in debt, about to split up with his girlfriend and thought he had failed his exams for the second time when actually he had passed.’
      • ‘I don't understand her fascination with someone whom she split up with 15 years ago.’
      • ‘I split up with the father of my daughter, for various reasons and was therefore single again, but I was not looking for a relationship.’
      • ‘Over dinner, two members of the press pack tell me they've split up with their girlfriends by phone or e-mail in recent days.’
      break up, separate, part, part company, become estranged, reach a parting of the ways
      View synonyms
    2. 2.2with object (of an issue) cause (a group) to be divided because of opposing views.
      ‘the party was deeply split over its future direction’
      • ‘Conservation groups are also split, the Ramblers Association calling on the park authority to reject the plans.’
      • ‘When the group almost split over the issue of whether to focus on confrontational action or voter registration, she healed the breach by saying it should work on both.’
      • ‘However, the scientific community is split over the issue.’
      • ‘The European Union, in fact, is deeply split over such issues as its budget and constitution.’
      • ‘He talks candidly about his feelings over these turbulent months and discusses his views on the issues splitting the modern Church.’
      • ‘Cultural issues have split libertarians from social conservatives.’
      • ‘The Government is split over the issue of drugs in prison.’
      • ‘The nation appears to be split over the question of whether abortion should be available on demand or only under certain conditions.’
      • ‘The prime minister's Social Democratic party is itself notoriously split on the issue of European integration.’
      • ‘The lough-side village has been split over the issue with one side arguing that the football pitch was required to meet the sporting needs of the young.’
      • ‘The party which has for over 100 years been the main focus of working class politics is now split over an issue of life and death.’
      • ‘Later, it was learned that the largest faction in the House was split over the issue.’
      • ‘Nationalist activists were thus split over constitutional issues as well as partisan versus non-partisan political strategies.’
      • ‘By 1972 the Democratic Party in North Carolina was deeply split over the issue of race.’
      • ‘In the past members have been split over the issue, with some wanting to move and others forming a preservation society because they wanted to stay.’
      • ‘The party, which was deeply split on the issue, could very well break apart.’
      • ‘Views are split over whether to apply for shares.’
      • ‘The road has proved to be a contentious issue, splitting the village of Hilperton into two camps, one supporting the application, the other campaigning against it.’
      • ‘Workers leaving Longbridge yesterday were split on who was responsible for the crisis.’
      • ‘The survey, conducted between mid-April and mid-June, found most ethnic groups were evenly split on the issue of national identity.’
      divide, disunite, separate, sever
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  • 3informal no object (of one's head) suffer great pain from a headache.

    ‘my head is splitting’
    ‘a splitting headache’
    • ‘I was getting even more tired than I already was, I was cranky, I had a splitting headache and I thought my poor little feet would collapse beneath me any second.’
    • ‘So a couple of weeks back I was feeling exhausted, had a splitting headache, intense muscle pain.’
    • ‘All of a sudden I was extremely dehydrated, with a splitting headache.’
    • ‘Her head was splitting and she felt cold, ever so cold, and tired.’
    • ‘My head was splitting and I could barely breathe.’
    • ‘I have to get out of here - my head is absolutely splitting.’
    • ‘I had difficulty sleeping last night due to the heat and a splitting headache.’
    • ‘The film opens with him suffering from that most human frailty, a splitting headache.’
    • ‘He felt as if his body was burning and his head was splitting.’
    • ‘She does have a splitting headache and an extremely dry mouth.’
    • ‘I'm home sick today, splitting headache and stuff.’
    • ‘I had a splitting headache and my eyes were blurring, though not from tears.’
    • ‘Afterwards he was relieved, he had the most splitting headache you could have.’
    • ‘The past few days had given him nothing but anxiety and splitting headaches.’
    • ‘I left early, due to a splitting headache, but it was a great night.’
    • ‘He has a splitting headache and is suffering flashbacks filled with scenes that suggest a danger-filled past.’
    • ‘Her head was splitting and the light made it feel even worse.’
    • ‘I woke up with a splitting headache, unaware of my surroundings.’
    • ‘I could feel another head splitting migraine, all from having to hear Becky and Jake ‘canoodle’ in the backseat.’
    • ‘I busted my lip, puked, missed class, received a black eye and splitting headache, and was ignored by my friends all on the same day.’
    agonizing, extremely painful, severe, acute, intense, extreme, savage, violent, racking, searing, piercing, stabbing, raging, harrowing, tormenting, grievous
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  • 4British informal no object Betray the secrets of or inform on someone.

    ‘I told him I wouldn't split on him’
    • ‘Hence, for instance, the new act of parliament that protects people from victimisation if they split on their bosses.’
    inform against, inform on, tell tales on, give away, sell out, stab in the back
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  • 5informal no object Leave a place, especially suddenly.

    ‘‘Let's split,’ Harvey said’
    • ‘It was a wonderful venue - pity about the DJ - but not quite up to par so we split early and headed for another club to dance what was left of the night away.’
    depart from, go away from, go from, withdraw from, retire from, take oneself off from, exit from, take one's leave of, pull out of, quit, be gone from, decamp from, disappear from, abandon, vacate, absent oneself from, evacuate
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noun

  • 1A tear, crack, or fissure in something, especially down the middle or along the grain.

    ‘splits appeared in the decaying planks’
    ‘light squeezed through a small split in the curtain’
    • ‘I accept the evidence of Mr. Pearson and Mr. Glendon with respect to their observations of the crack or split or fissure in the tubing.’
    • ‘These cracks were narrow splits, predominantly perpendicular to the seed's long axis.’
    • ‘Repair splits or tears with nail glue or clear polish.’
    • ‘The rock runs north-south, with a split through the middle and the lighthouse on the larger, southern part of the rock.’
    • ‘Cracks and splits can be detrimental to good accuracy, and could possibly cause injury to the shooter should the rifle decide to come apart when fired.’
    • ‘A small split has appeared along the chest area as well.’
    • ‘As Mr. Kendall explained, the split or tear observed in the photographs in Mr. Johnston's report, Folio 2 page 15, is at the top of the cant.’
    • ‘Make sure windscreen wipers are in good condition without any splits or tears’
    • ‘Equally uncomfortable as cold sores are cracks and splits that can sometimes occur in the corners of the mouth or on the lips.’
    • ‘In contrast, frost cracks are vertical splits that penetrate deep into the wood.’
    • ‘You were not able to check whether there were any splits or tears in the lead in the parapet gutter?’
    • ‘The axe can then be removed an sometimes hammered in further along the split.’
    • ‘There are also types of adhesive caulking that will mend split or loose roofing shingles as well as splits or cracks in siding.’
    • ‘It allows you to visually inspect your cases for cracks and splits much more easily.’
    • ‘Finger splits, or fissures, are one of the more frequent winter skin complaints Kunin addresses.’
    • ‘Cracks, splits and holes are by definition one of the biggest problems in sealing technology.’
    crack, fissure, cleft, crevice, break, fracture, breach
    rip, tear, cut, rent, slash, slit
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    1. 1.1 An instance or act of splitting or being split; a division.
      ‘a 75–25 split of proceeds’
      ‘the split between the rich and the poor’
      • ‘At 2.2 mm diameter, the ribs are particularly strong near the umbilicus and become weaker after their split in the middle of the flank.’
      • ‘Obviously, back in Vietnam when there was a split in the country, you had clear ideological divisions.’
      • ‘It's a clear split down the middle: boy bands and us.’
      • ‘With only three games left before the split into three divisions every result now takes on even greater importance.’
      • ‘Of course at every instant a split occurs each of us becomes one or more close duplicates, each traveling a new universe.’
      • ‘It recommends that a radical new funding formula is devised to redress the balance, based on actual crime figures, not an arbitrary three-way split between the divisions.’
      • ‘This seems to be just another instance of the classic split between graphic design and information design.’
      • ‘The frogs were silent and branches broke with a split and crack.’
      • ‘Most polymorphism thus appears to predate the split of these closely related genera.’
      • ‘Where the split occurs along the body determines how much duplication of organs there is and the degree of competition between the two heads.’
      • ‘The company calculates that its split into northern and southern divisions will provide a platform for profitable growth over the next six months.’
      • ‘Note how the split appears to occur between neighboring actin bundles.’
      • ‘The obstacles to the large-scale reform of the United Nations may reside above all in the split between the rich North and the poor South, the haves and the have-nots.’
      • ‘But as you know, there's a lot of people concerned about the split, the division between the executive and the legislative branch.’
      • ‘There is no indication that Peter Faulding ever made a specific proposal to the Deakins either at this, or any later, stage that there should be a split of shares along these lines.’
      • ‘There is a marked split between rich and poor in most of the country.’
      • ‘Once Rehnquist resigned and Roberts took his place you have a split down the middle 4-4 court with O'Connor in the middle.’
      • ‘The above split of proceeds excludes the moneys of pre-delivery instalments already paid by the company and received by the Yard.’
      • ‘Base the split along the lines of where the expertise lies.’
      • ‘Education appears to value the split created between socially valued knowledge and experiential knowledge.’
    2. 1.2 A separation into parties or within a party; a schism.
      ‘the accusations caused a split in the party’
      • ‘Meanwhile, the splits within his party, he claims, have been devastating.’
      • ‘One member who attended a special general meeting on the plan earlier this month, said the split had developed along classic generational lines.’
      • ‘Society is in chaos, tainted with conflict and splits between the haves and have-nots, conservatives and progressives, and management and labor.’
      • ‘The long and short of it is that the splits and divisions on the far side of the House are irreconcilable and deep.’
      • ‘A split along national lines, whereby England's vote comprises a mirror image of that north of the Border, looks set to trigger a political row which could test the mettle of the new parliament.’
      • ‘But now, suddenly, we can't tell whether a split is a real division or just an honest difference of opinion.’
      • ‘Divisions and splits in the Callaghan government had ‘led to 18 years of Thatcherism’.’
      • ‘The split reflects a division of opinion among courts generally on the issue of affirmative action.’
      • ‘‘There appears to be a split between the chairman and the non executives at Gresham,’ a Red Sea source said.’
      • ‘And its message of peace is still needed in world conflicts, neighbourhood rows, family splits - and, yes, in church divisions.’
      • ‘The split within the party has led to tactical shifts in which conservatives and Democrats often team up to embarrass the ruling moderate Republicans.’
      • ‘Nevertheless, splits occurred along class lines, on the issue of temperance, and on account of differences in personality among the leaders.’
      • ‘There are a lot of reasons for this failure, including the long-time split within the party between hawks and doves.’
      • ‘The voluntary organisation has been riven by internal conflict, with a split over its future direction.’
      • ‘Despite divisions in Afrikanerdom and splits in the government over strategy, the security forces, including the black police, had remained loyal.’
      • ‘The conference's family orientation also helped to prevent a split, because a division would undoubtedly have separated relatives.’
      • ‘In the early 1940s, however, splits appeared in the Fianna Fail government over how beneficial land distribution was.’
      • ‘It is doubtless unfortunate for the split to appear at this stage, with an election on the horizon.’
      • ‘One piece decries the stark split tearing the country, and another seems to pine for a sort of folksy patriotism.’
      • ‘Despite the many splits and divisions which have plagued the Gaels through the years, there have always been a few things which brought us together.’
      division, rift, breach, schism, rupture, partition, separation, severance, break-up, alienation, estrangement
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    3. 1.3 An ending of a marriage or other relationship.
      ‘a much-publicized split with his wife’
      • ‘Richard Cooper, defending, told the court of the marriage split which drove Franklyn to the drugs.’
      • ‘Is this evidence of one of the first Hollywood relationships with a friendly split?’
      • ‘The singer has also insisted that his split from Kerry will not affect his relationship with his two children.’
      • ‘Mrs Moffat told the inquest that Mrs Seaton had been devastated over the temporary split but did not think the relationship was going to work out.’
      • ‘It is believed his split from his second wife last month sent him back into the binge-drinking spiral which has plagued his adult life.’
      • ‘It has since transpired that this ‘other’ woman only became Zurawski's girlfriend after a marriage split that occurred long before he arrived in Scotland.’
      • ‘The split was acrimonious and relations are still strained.’
      • ‘This is possible, I suppose, although my admittedly sketchy review of the relationship didn't reveal any hints of a split.’
      • ‘A website offering cheap divorces online has processed its 15,000th marriage split.’
      • ‘The radio star and DJ have blamed hectic work schedules for causing their marriage split.’
      • ‘Duffy's sudden desire to conceive a child no longer fits into Meg's schedule, and the strain on their relationship causes a split.’
      • ‘Along with the split came a new licensing agreement.’
      • ‘O'Byrne had an acrimonious split from his wife who formed a relationship with another man.’
      • ‘Fortunately, the split was relatively free of rancour, and her father remained a consistent presence and guiding spirit in her life.’
      • ‘A study has found that more than 70 per cent of new marriages ends in a split and the child is a main reason for the break-up.’
      • ‘The inquest heard how Mr Palmer had been coping well following his split with his wife of 14 years.’
      • ‘Pitt says there was a certain beauty in his marriage to Aniston, and surprisingly, also in their split.’
      • ‘His acrimonious split from his wife has contributed to his blithely acknowledged misogyny, hence there are no women working in his restaurant.’
      • ‘News of their engagement, marriage, and split made the papers on a regular basis.’
      • ‘I thought it was a pretty useful word that allowed New Zealanders to talk about how they would look after their kids in the event of a relationship split.’
      break-up, split-up, separation, parting, estrangement, parting of the ways, rift, rupture, breach
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  • 2the splits" or US also "a split(in gymnastics and dance) an act of leaping in the air or sitting down with the legs straight and at right angles to the body, one in front and the other behind, or one at each side.

    ‘I could never do the splits before’
    • ‘Either way it'll get you doing the splits on the dance floor.’
    • ‘They soar, spin, and dive to the floor, then spiral swiftly back to shoulder stands, splits and endless balances.’
    • ‘I occasionally try a few moves and last time I attempted it, I could still do the splits.’
    • ‘His left foot started to slide away on a patch of ice, but he caught himself before he managed to do the splits.’
    • ‘He is an ageing rocker who has found, mid-concert, that he can no longer do the splits while playing his guitar solo one-handed behind his head.’
    • ‘I'm the first old man of 74 years old to do the splits.’
    • ‘I may be 230 lb but I can do the splits and dance the Cajun two-step for two hours.’
    • ‘He was the one that would fan the horse's head and then almost do the splits in midair and land on his feet, and the crowd loved that.’
    • ‘This tip will make the skates turn in an arc so you won't do the splits!’
    • ‘At age 74, she was more than capable of performing cartwheels and the splits!’
    • ‘But you try doing the splits upside down with your head underwater and all the while keeping a smile on your face.’
    • ‘Lindsay saw Marissa trying to do the splits and almost touching the ground.’
    • ‘I'm a gymnast, you know, I can do the splits right here (she could).’
    • ‘So I said to the Gym instructor ‘Can you teach me to do the splits?’’
    • ‘Remember the days when you could effortlessly do the splits, kick like a Rockette and put your foot behind your head on a dare?’
    • ‘She currently can run the 40-yard dash in 5.5 seconds, do the splits and jump 30 inches for her vertical leap.’
    • ‘But she has been asked about her ability to do the splits on several occasions.’
    • ‘He has even taken to adopting a putting stance that looks for all the world as though he is about to do the splits.’
    • ‘You don't just get up and do the splits in your late 30s no matter how enthusiastic you are, Laucinda says.’
  • 3A thing that is divided or split.

    • ‘Nor do we have all of the split posts, as there are too many half splits with the central pith intact.’
    • ‘Dots for each bar indicate taxa on one half of the split.’
    1. 3.1 A bun, roll, or cake that is split or cut in half.
    2. 3.2 A split osier used in basketwork.
      • ‘Seating himself on his accustomed stool, he began to weave the splits dexterously in an out.’
      • ‘So you come back and you hit the stick of wood right in the middle, right through here, and it'll give you two splits.’
      • ‘Then as he walked, he wove the splits into a basket to be traded at the store for whatever provisions the family needed.’
    3. 3.3 Each strip of steel or cane that makes up the reed in a loom.
      • ‘After the warp ends have been threaded individually through wire eyes on the shafts, they are sleyed collectively through each split in the reed.’
      • ‘Tweeling is produced by increasing the number of threads in each split of the reed.’
    4. 3.4 Half a bottle of champagne.
      • ‘You see, back then, it was cool to drink a split.’
      • ‘We drank a split of Taittinger Brut champagne during the appetizers, and our patience was rewarded.’
    5. 3.5 A single thickness of split hide.
      • ‘They use only quality top-grain leather in their products and do not use leather splits or vinyls.’
      • ‘His factory didn't even tan the split (another part of the leather making process); they'd sell them off to be made into gloves or whatever.’
    6. 3.6 (in tenpin bowling) a formation of standing pins after the first ball in which there is a gap between two pins or groups of pins, making a spare unlikely.
      • ‘The big-hook players leave many more difficult spares and splits than a player with a narrower angle of entry.’
      • ‘Workman, meanwhile, got a split in the second frame, then strung seven strikes in a row, pretty much ending the match.’
      • ‘Also, when you're bowling well, the miss-hits don't leave you with big splits and tough spares.’
      • ‘On certain splits, or even on spare shots when a single pin is needed, bowlers will roll the ball from what they consider an easier or safer angle.’
      • ‘If you look around and don't see as many strikes, and a lot of splits or spares are on the board, the lanes probably are playing a little bit tougher.’
    7. 3.7North American A drawn match or series.
      • ‘Maybe they should be happy to get out of Atlanta with a split of the two games.’
      • ‘But they still get to keep this week's top spot, mainly because the series ended in a split, and no one below them did all that much to leap ahead.’
      • ‘SFU's women's basketball squad pulled off a split in two tight matches against the Dinos on Jan.13 and 14.’
      • ‘And yesterday, in a rusty performance by both teams after a month layoff, even their exhibition game ended in a split with a 5-5 draw.’
      • ‘As the Series headed north after a split at Edison Field, the styles had been established but not an advantage.’
      • ‘English cricket chief David Morgan said the World Cup match in Zimbabwe must go ahead to avoid a split in the international game.’
      • ‘Prior to the four games, coach Bishop expressed his desire to at least register a split in the two games last Saturday against the Western squad which he said is close in skill level to Waterloo.’
      • ‘Only 5 of the Yankees’ 14 runs were earned as the four-game series ended in a split.’
      • ‘At Miami, Carlos Delgado hit a pinch-hit grand slam to cap a six-run fifth inning for Florida to salvage a split in the four-game series.’
    8. 3.8US A split-level house.
      • ‘My house is a split, so the basement is only under the main part of the house.’
      • ‘The fact that your home is a split should not be a major factor here.’
  • 4The time taken to complete a recognized part of a race, or the point in the race where such a time is measured.

    • ‘The talk was of stroke-rates, times, splits, lactate curves, heart rate, aerobic thresholds.’
    • ‘Her butterfly split of 57.65 was the fastest of the year and third fastest all-time.’
    • ‘Nevertheless, later in the day, he ran the first leg of the winning England 4 x 200m relay team with a personal best split of 22.7s.’
    • ‘Also, pay attention to first half and second half splits.’
    • ‘Holland's Pieter van den Hoogenband had the fastest freestyle split.’
    • ‘Hamilton is setting fast times on the road, but no-one is matching the splits of leading duo David Millar and Laszlo Bodrogi.’
    • ‘As a fierce relay anchor, Correia has the fastest 50 and 100-yard freestyle relay splits in history.’
    • ‘Over the last two years, Davis has kept a chart of Thorpe's record times and splits on the wall of his bedroom.’

Phrases

  • split the difference

    • Take the average of two proposed amounts.

      • ‘Can't we just split the difference and all be comfortable?’
      • ‘In a compromise, the leaders will split the difference, resulting in an agreement to distribute 18 to 21% of World Bank aid in the form of grants.’
      • ‘Since one rep is motivated to overstate the claim, and the other is motivated to understate it, we recommend splitting the difference and going to press with 7,500.’
      • ‘Well, if the House wants $550 billion in tax cuts, the Senate approved $350 billion, what, do you just split the difference and come up with $450 billion?’
      • ‘Even if we split the difference and figure that we'll need 240MW of new generation every year, it doesn't change the fact that we've built less than 500MW-worth in the past five years.’
      • ‘He agreed to split the difference between the two ad rates, settling for a price of about $10 per thousand viewers.’
      • ‘In this case, you cannot simply split the difference, by taking the mean average; you must decide which turnout model is going to be correct, the one or the other.’
      • ‘If I say two plus two equals four, and you say two plus two equals 1 billion, is it really such a great advance to split the difference and agree that it's somewhere near 500 million?’
      • ‘Well, I tell you what, why don't we split the difference?’
      • ‘If we split the difference and say that the average price of statins is $90 a month, that's $1,080 a year for drugs and $210 a year for labs.’
      reach a compromise, find the middle ground, come to terms, come to an understanding, reach an agreement, make a deal, make concessions, find a happy medium, strike a balance
      View synonyms
  • split hairs

    • Make small and overfine distinctions.

      ‘one of those medieval disputes which split hairs endlessly’
      • ‘It may come down to semantics and splitting hairs, but it doesn't actually say anywhere in the constitution that Japan can't have an army.’
      • ‘But even as the scientists and the Government split hairs over whether more stringent standards are required for bottled water, the consumers have no option but to go for what is available in the market.’
      • ‘Okay, so maybe I'm splitting hairs, but whatever the case may be, it is delicious and I gorged myself on it this Thanksgiving weekend.’
      • ‘I'm perhaps splitting hairs, here, but there has got to be a difference between drawing influence from various sources and plagiarizing.’
      • ‘I'm not splitting hairs - TV is different from real life.’
      • ‘One of the things I want to do is give this site a desperately needed spring-clean (yes, it's winter, but let's not split hairs, shall we?).’
      • ‘Yes, I do see the distinction and am perhaps splitting hairs over the delivery of the message.’
      • ‘By this point we were probably splitting hairs.’
      • ‘I hate to split hairs here, but there's a difference between ‘might not be true’ and ‘knew the info was false.’’
      • ‘One sentence in the manual required that lawyers participating in the recount should ‘have the courage to voice disagreement and must split hairs trying to find faults.’’
      quibble, raise trivial objections, find fault, cavil, carp, niggle, argue over nothing
      View synonyms
    • see hair
      quibble, raise trivial objections, find fault, cavil, carp, niggle, argue over nothing
      View synonyms
  • split one's sides

    • informal Be convulsed with laughter.

      • ‘They will be splitting their sides in London over the spectacle of yet another Scottish solution to a Scottish problem.’
      • ‘No second-rate seat would have withstood the pressure from two young children bouncing up and down with glee for two hours, splitting their sides and shouting themselves hoarse.’
      • ‘To tell you the truth, we got as much fun from that incident as we did from winning the final, and I'd say whenever we met thereafter rarely an occasion passed when we didn't split our sides.’
      • ‘We want people to come, split their sides laughing and then go home in great form.’
      • ‘They can bring tears or make people split their sides with laughter.’
      • ‘This year they will have audiences splitting their sides with laughter with their crazy antics.’
      • ‘I bought the book for my husband - we're both avid campers - and I've nearly split my sides laughing at the encounters with rattlesnakes and bears.’
      • ‘As his costume split its seams, audiences split their sides.’
      • ‘The so-called class enemies of capitalists must be splitting their sides.’
      • ‘Everyone split their sides, they were laughing so hard.’
      roar with laughter, laugh, guffaw, roar, laugh loudly, howl with laughter, dissolve into laughter, be creased up, be doubled up
      View synonyms
  • split the ticket (or one's vote)

    • Vote for candidates of more than one party.

      • ‘A hundred thousand expats could only add a percentage point or two to a list's total, especially since they will split their vote among several lists.’
      • ‘The Academy rarely splits the ticket, so I think he'll get both statues.’
      • ‘He acknowledged that political parties did not encourage tactical voting in their campaign strategies, but sophisticated voters could split their vote.’
      • ‘Luckily, in New Zealand, we can split our vote, which makes the electoral dynamic rather different than under a first past the post system.’
      • ‘In the presidential election, we must not split our vote between Greens and Democrats.’
      • ‘Divided government comes from centrist voters who split the ticket to achieve their desired ideological mix.’
      • ‘Both the Senate and the presidential campaigns are tied together somewhat, although there will be people that will split the ticket.’
      • ‘Having two votes, a citizen could now split his vote and avoid this dilemma.’
      • ‘I will probably split my vote as I did last time by voting for a candidate chosen for personal qualities but voting for a different party.’
      • ‘So I voted a few times and split my vote between them.’
  • split the vote

    • (of a candidate or minority party) attract votes from another candidate or party with the result that both are defeated by a third.

      • ‘The very fact that they could succeed in splitting the vote was indicative of a general degeneration and fragmentation of the Left.’
      • ‘And instead of two or three parties opposing the ruling party, there were six or seven or eight opposing the ruling party and they split their vote terribly.’
      • ‘She stood as an Independent instead, splitting the vote.’
      • ‘If one prefers party A or B, but never C, then under the current system one must choose A or B and split the vote.’
      • ‘His decision to stand as an Independent split the vote, allowing Mr Exley to win the seat with 1,607 votes.’
      • ‘The major problem the Democrats had is that no less than three Democrats ran for the office, splitting the vote and media attention between them.’
      • ‘It is a crying shame we couldn't all come together to avoid splitting the vote.’
      • ‘Progressives across the country were presented with an old problem - vote for a less-than-perfect Democrat, or support a noble but doomed protest candidate and risk splitting the vote.’
      • ‘I was on the verge of winning and he split the vote.’
      • ‘The danger is that they may split the vote and drag each other down.’

Origin

Late 16th century (originally in the sense ‘break up a ship’, describing the force of a storm or rock): from Middle Dutch splitten, of unknown ultimate origin.

Pronunciation

split

/splɪt/

Main definitions of split in English

: split1Split2

Split2

proper noun

  • A seaport on the coast of southern Croatia; population 177,500 (est. 2009). Founded as a Roman colony in 78 BC, it contains the ruins of the palace of the emperor Diocletian, built in about AD 300.

Pronunciation

Split

/splɪt/