1: a force that moves something along [syn: impetus, impulsion]
2: the gradual departure from an intended course due to external influences (as a ship or plane)
3: a process of linguistic change over a period of time
4: something that is heaped up by the wind or by water currents
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" [syn: trend, movement]
6: general meaning or tenor; "caught the drift of the conversation" [syn: purport]
7: a horizontal (or nearly horizontal) passageway in a mine; "they dug a drift parallel with the vein" [syn: heading, gallery]
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" [syn: float, 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" [syn: stray, err]
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" [syn: roll, wander, swan, stray, tramp, roam, cast, ramble, rove, range, vagabond]
4: vary or move from a fixed point or course; "stock prices are drifting higher"
5: live unhurriedly, irresponsibly, or freely; "My son drifted around for years in California before going to law school" [syn: freewheel]
6: move in an unhurried fashion; "The unknown young man drifted among the invited guests"
7: cause to be carried by a current; "drift the boats downstream"
8: drive slowly and far afield for grazing; "drift the cattle herds westwards"
9: be subject to fluctuation; "The stock market drifted upward"
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"
Adjacent words: dried-out | dried-up | drier | drier | drier | driest | driest | drift | drift apart | drift away | drift ice | drift net | drift off | driftage | drifter | driftfish