To rend asunder by force; to split; to cleave; as, to rive timber for rails or shingles. "I shall ryve him through the sides twain." (Chaucer) "The scolding winds have rived the knotty oaks." (Shak) "Brutus hath rived my heart." (Shak)
Origin: Icel. Rifa, akin to Sw. Rifva to pull asunder, burst, tear, Dan. Rive to rake, pluck, tear. Cf. Reef of land, Rifle a gun, Rift, Rivel.
(01 Mar 1998)
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