Simple Definition of abstemious
: not eating and drinking too much
Full Definition of abstemious
: marked by restraint especially in the consumption of food or alcohol; also : reflecting such restraint <an abstemious diet>
Examples of abstemious in a sentence
She is known as an abstemious eater and drinker.
<being abstemious diners, they avoid restaurants with all-you-can-eat buffets>
Did You Know?
Abstemious and "abstain" look alike, and both have meanings involving self-restraint or self-denial. So they must both come from the same root, right? Yes and no. Both get their start from the Latin prefix abs-, meaning "from" or "away," but "abstain" traces to "abs-" plus the Latin verb tenēre (meaning "to hold"), while "abstemious" gets its "-temious" from a suffix akin to the Latin noun temetum, meaning "intoxicating drink."
Origin of abstemious
Latin abstemius, from abs- + -temius; akin to Latin temetum intoxicating drink
First Known Use: 1609
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