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noun \ˈləv\

Simple Definition of love

  • : a feeling of strong or constant affection for a person

  • : attraction that includes sexual desire : the strong affection felt by people who have a romantic relationship

  • : a person you love in a romantic way

Source: Merriam-Webster's Learner's Dictionary

Full Definition of love

  1. 1 a (1) :  strong affection for another arising out of kinship or personal ties <maternal love for a child> (2) :  attraction based on sexual desire :  affection and tenderness felt by lovers (3) :  affection based on admiration, benevolence, or common interests <love for his old schoolmates> b :  an assurance of affection <give her my love>

  2. 2 :  warm attachment, enthusiasm, or devotion <love of the sea>

  3. 3 a :  the object of attachment, devotion, or admiration <baseball was his first love> b (1) :  a beloved person :  darling —often used as a term of endearment (2) British —used as an informal term of address

  4. 4 a :  unselfish loyal and benevolent concern for the good of another: as (1) :  the fatherly concern of God for humankind (2) :  brotherly concern for others b :  a person's adoration of God

  5. 5 :  a god or personification of love

  6. 6 :  an amorous episode :  love affair

  7. 7 :  the sexual embrace :  copulation

  8. 8 :  a score of zero (as in tennis)

  9. 9 capitalized Christian Science :  god

at love
  1. :  holding one's opponent scoreless in tennis

in love
  1. :  inspired by affection

Examples of love in a sentence

  1. Mr. Brown seems to imply that when he retired he relinquished her love as casually as he dispensed with her secretarial services. —Ken Follett, New York Times Book Review, 27 Dec. 1987

  2. … Eddie sees Vince's pure love of pool, and after years of thinking of the game as merely a hustle, the older man suddenly falls back in love with the game himself. —Maureen Dowd, New York Times Magazine, 28 Sept. 1986

  3. Aunt Polly knelt down and prayed for Tom so touchingly, so appealingly, and with such measureless love in her words and her old trembling voice, that he was weltering in tears again, long before she was through. —Mark Twain, Tom Sawyer, 1876

  4. Allworthy thus answered: “… I have always thought love the only foundation of happiness in a married state, as it can only produce that high and tender friendship which should always be the cement of this union …” —Henry Fielding, Tom Jones, 1749

  5. Children need unconditional love from their parents.

  6. He was just a lonely man looking for love.

Origin of love

Middle English, from Old English lufu; akin to Old High German luba love, Old English lēof dear, Latin lubēre, libēre to please

First Known Use: before 12th century

Other Forms of Address Terms

Rhymes with love



verb \ˈləv\

Simple Definition of love

  • : to feel great affection for (someone) : to feel love for (someone)

  • : to feel sexual or romantic love for (someone)

  • : to like or desire (something) very much : to take great pleasure in (something)

Source: Merriam-Webster's Learner's Dictionary

Full Definition of love


  1. transitive verb
  2. 1 :  to hold dear :  cherish

  3. 2 a :  to feel a lover's passion, devotion, or tenderness for b (1) :  caress (2) :  to fondle amorously (3) :  to copulate with

  4. 3 :  to like or desire actively :  take pleasure in <loved to play the violin>

  5. 4 :  to thrive in <the rose loves sunlight>

  6. intransitive verb
  7. :  to feel affection or experience desire

Examples of love in a sentence

  1. People loved him for his brashness and talent, his crazy manglings of the English language, his brawling, boyish antics … and I loved him, too, I loved him as much as anyone in the world. —Paul Auster, Granta, Winter 1994

  2. Lying awake, listening to the sound of his father's breathing, he knew there was no one in the world he loved so much. —William Maxwell, New Yorker, 15 May 1989

  3. I love either rushing off into abstractions, or shamelessly talking personalities. —Elizabeth Bowen, letter, 28 Apr. 1923

  4. “Nay,” said Elizabeth, “this is not fair. You wish to think all the world respectable, and are hurt if I speak ill of any body. I only want to think you perfect, and you set yourself against it. Do not be afraid of my running into any excess, of my encroaching on your privilege of universal good will. You need not. There are few people whom I really love, and still fewer of whom I think well.” —Jane Austen, Pride and Prejudice, 1813

  5. She obviously loves her family very much.

  6. You have to love in order to be loved.

  7. He swore that he loved her madly.

  8. She said she could never marry a man she didn't love.

Origin of love

(see 1love)

First Known Use: before 12th century

LOVE Defined for Kids



noun \ˈləv\

Definition of love for Students

  1. 1 :  strong and warm affection (as of a parent for a child)

  2. 2 :  a great liking <a love for reading>

  3. 3 :  a beloved person




Definition of love for Students


  1. 1 :  to feel strong affection for <He loves his family.>

  2. 2 :  to like very much <She loves to ski.>

lover noun

Seen and Heard

What made you want to look up love? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


a division or portion of a pool or whole

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