Definition of abstemious
- an abstemious drinker
- an abstemious diet
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She is known as an abstemious eater and drinker.
being abstemious diners, they avoid restaurants with all-you-can-eat buffets
These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'abstemious.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.
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."
: not eating and drinking too much
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