1. swing music or early jazz.
  2. the jargon associated with swing music and early jazz.
  3. Slang. deceptive, exaggerated, or meaningless talk: Don’t give me any of that jive!

verb (used without object), jived, jiv·ing.

  1. to play jive.
  2. to dance to jive; jitterbug.
  3. Slang. to engage in kidding, teasing, or exaggeration.

verb (used with object), jived, jiv·ing.

  1. Slang. to tease; fool; kid: Stop jiving me!


  1. Slang. insincere, pretentious, or deceptive.


  1. a style of lively and jerky dance performed to jazz and, later, to rock and roll, popular esp in the 1940s and 1950s
  2. Also called: jive talk a variety of American slang spoken chiefly by Black people, esp jazz musicians
    1. slang, mainly USdeliberately misleading or deceptive talk
    2. (as modifier)jive talk


  1. (intr) to dance the jive
  2. slang, mainly US to mislead; tell lies (to)

1928, “to deceive playfully,” also “empty, misleading talk” (n.) and “a style of fast, lively jazz and dance music,” American English, from Black English, probably of African origin (cf. Wolof jev, jeu “talk about someone absent, especially in a disparaging manner”). Related: Jived; jiving. Used from 1938 for “New York City African-American slang.”


“agree,” 1943, apparently a mistake for jibe (q.v.).


“not acting right,” 1969, U.S. black English, from jive (n.) (see jive (1)). Extended form jive-ass (1964, adj.; 1969, n.) is defined in OED as “A word of fluid meaning and application.”

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