succumb

verb
suc·cumb | \ sə-ˈkəm \
succumbed; succumbing; succumbs

Definition of succumb 

intransitive verb

1 : to yield to superior strength or force or overpowering appeal or desire succumb to temptation

2 : to be brought to an end (such as death) by the effect of destructive or disruptive forces

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Synonyms & Antonyms for succumb

Synonyms

bow, cave (in), give in, submit, surrender, yield

Antonyms

hold off, resist

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Choose the Right Synonym for succumb

yield, submit, capitulate, succumb, relent, defer mean to give way to someone or something that one can no longer resist. yield may apply to any sort or degree of giving way before force, argument, persuasion, or entreaty. yields too easily in any argument submit suggests full surrendering after resistance or conflict to the will or control of another. a repentant sinner vowing to submit to the will of God capitulate stresses the fact of ending all resistance and may imply either a coming to terms (as with an adversary) or hopelessness in the face of an irresistible opposing force. officials capitulated to the protesters' demands succumb implies weakness and helplessness to the one that gives way or an overwhelming power to the opposing force. a stage actor succumbing to the lure of Hollywood relent implies a yielding through pity or mercy by one who holds the upper hand. finally relented and let the children stay up late defer implies a voluntary yielding or submitting out of respect or reverence for or deference and affection toward another. I defer to your expertise in these matters

Did You Know?

If the idea of someone succumbing brings to mind the image of a person lying down before more powerful forces, you have an excellent grasp of the Latin that gave us succumb. Succumb derives from the French word succomber, which is itself from the Latin word succumbere, meaning "to fall down" or "to yield." Succumbere was formed by combining sub-, meaning "under," with -cumbere, meaning "to lie down." The earliest application of succumb in the late 15th century was as a transitive verb meaning "to bring down" or "to overwhelm," but this sense is now obsolete. The current sense of "to yield" first appeared in print in the early 17th century; the more specific use-yielding to a disease or other destructive force-followed two centuries later.

Examples of succumb in a Sentence

Lepanto occupies a curious military fault line between ancient and modern. It was fought with galleys almost identical to those that had clashed in this same gulf sixteen centuries before, when the ships of Antony and Cleopatra succumbed to those of Octavian at the Battle of Actium. —Colin Thubron, New York Times Book Review, 9 Apr. 2009 Last spring, the Knight Ridder chain succumbed to pressure from its largest private investor and sold off its entire lineup of 32 papers to the McClatchy Co. for more than $4 billion. —Eric Klinenberg, Mother Jones, March/April 2007 Yet after Paul died in 1978 and his successor John Paul I succumbed to a heart attack only 34 days into his papacy, Wojyla was so oblivious to his impending fate that he spent the first day of the new papal conclave nonchalantly browsing through a quarterly review of Marxist theory. —David Van Biema, Time, 11 Apr. 2005 Interviews with cadets, police officers and investigators trying to crack down on crime inside Mexico City's 80,000-officer force revealed that even the most earnest cops often succumb to the temptations that are both plentiful and low risk. —Alan Zarembo, Newsweek, 4 Dec. 2000 They will pressure you, and you must try not to succumb. he finally succumbed and let his wife get rid of his dilapidated easy chair
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Recent Examples on the Web

This exercise forces you to succumb to the irrationalism of your silly heart. Mayukh Sen, Bon Appetit, "The Unshakeable Indian Restaurant I’ll Go Out of My Way to Visit," 6 June 2018 Julie Fabula, 42, died May 19, 2015, succumbing to bone cancer after a nearly three-year battle with the disease. David Anderson, The Aegis, "Fallston High's Class of 2018 reflects on their pasts and futures," 31 May 2018 There is an increase in anxiety and some patients succumb to depression, suicidal thoughts, or both. Rafal Tokarz, Health.com, "The Lyme Disease Complication You Don't Know About—But Should," 31 May 2018 Ged succumbs to these doubts in The Farthest Shore, in which he, now the archmage of Roke, and a young prince named Arren must heal a breach in the universe created by a rogue wizard seeking immortality. Ryu Spaeth, New Republic, "An Education Through Earthsea," 6 Feb. 2018 People need to look at their kids and see Muslim kids, Syrian kids, Latino kids and not succumb to castigation or fearmongering and see them as our own. Steve Sadin, chicagotribune.com, "North suburban residents rally against border separations: 'I’ve never seen this before'," 2 July 2018 Jones will not easily succumb to any negative influence. Jonathan Jones, SI.com, "Why the Falcons Shouldn't Be Concerned About Julio Jones Training With Terrell Owens," 22 June 2018 Our theory at trial was that Cindy rebuffed him and had the presence and will not to succumb. Corey Williams, Fox News, "Convicted killer told police of penchant for teen girls," 11 May 2018 The Chimú succumbed to the Inca only decades after the sacrifices at Las Llamas. National Geographic, "Exclusive: Ancient Mass Child Sacrifice May Be World's Largest," 26 Apr. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'succumb.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of succumb

1604, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for succumb

French & Latin; French succomber, from Latin succumbere, from sub- + -cumbere to lie down; akin to Latin cubare to lie

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Statistics for succumb

Last Updated

13 Sep 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for succumb

The first known use of succumb was in 1604

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More Definitions for succumb

succumb

verb

English Language Learners Definition of succumb

: to stop trying to resist something

: to die

succumb

verb
suc·cumb | \ sə-ˈkəm \
succumbed; succumbing

Kids Definition of succumb

1 : to yield to force or pressure Don't succumb to temptation.

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