feed

verb
\ ˈfēd How to pronounce feed (audio) \
fed\ ˈfed How to pronounce fed (audio) \; feeding

Definition of feed

 (Entry 1 of 2)

transitive verb

1a : to give food to
b : to give as food
2a : to furnish something essential to the development, sustenance, maintenance, or operation of reading feeds the mind
b : to supply (material to be operated on) to a machine
c(1) : to insert and deposit (something) repeatedly or continuously feed quarters into a parking meter
(2) : to insert and deposit something into (something) Running out to feed the meter every hour doesn't work, because the meter will not permit more than one hour for a given car.— T. R. Reid
3 : to produce or provide food for
5a(1) : to supply for use or consumption
(2) : channel, route
b(1) : to supply (a signal) to an electronic circuit
(2) : to send (as by wire or satellite) to a transmitting station for broadcast
6 : to supply (a fellow actor) with cues and situations that make a role more effective
7 : to pass a ball or puck to (a teammate) especially for a shot at the goal

intransitive verb

1a : to consume food : eat
b : prey used with on, upon, or off
2 : to become nourished or satisfied or sustained as if by food
3a : to become channeled or directed
b : to move into a machine or opening in order to be used or processed

feed

noun

Definition of feed (Entry 2 of 2)

1a : an act of eating
b : meal especially : a large meal
2a : food for livestock specifically : a mixture or preparation for feeding livestock
b : the amount given at each feeding
3a : material supplied (as to a furnace or machine)
b : a mechanism by which the action of feeding is effected
c : the motion or process of carrying forward the material to be operated upon (as in a machine)
d : the act or process of feeding a signal (such as an audio or video transmission) to a station for broadcast also : the signal being fed a live satellite feed
e : an Internet service in which updates from electronic information sources (such as blogs or social media accounts) are presented in a continuous stream an RSS feed also : the information presented by such a service I changed my settings so that all of my cousin's posts would show up at the top of my feed.
4 : the action of passing a ball or puck to a team member who is in position to score

Keep scrolling for more

Synonyms for feed

Synonyms: Verb

board, cater, provision, victual

Synonyms: Noun

banquet, dinner, feast, regale, spread

Visit the Thesaurus for More 

Examples of feed in a Sentence

Verb

He was too weak to feed himself. We feed the plants with a special fertilizer twice a week. We fed the horses with apples, oats, and hay. The children fed apples to the horses. These supplies could feed a small army for a week. He doesn't earn enough to feed a family of four. helping to feed and clothe poor children They used the wood to feed the fire. The streams feed the creek. The motor is fed by an electrical current.

Noun

There's a jam in the paper feed. We had to cut off the main power feed. They're showing a live satellite feed of the event.
See More

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

The error caused it to feed faulty information to the autopilot. Jeff Wise, Popular Mechanics, "4 Times Before the Boeing 737 Max 8 That Plane Automation Software Went Haywire," 18 Mar. 2019 The squash is picked from fields of frothing cosmos; the honey is harvested from bees fed on marigolds; the yak meat is bought from farmers and stirred into warming noodle broths. Sophy Roberts, Condé Nast Traveler, "On Your Next Trip to Nepal, Rent the House Sir Edmund Hillary Loved," 20 Dec. 2018 And on the back side of the canvas, several species of Bacillus bacteria had set up housekeeping, apparently feeding on paste and glue. Kiona N. Smith, Ars Technica, "What’s eating this 400-year-old painting? A whole ecosystem of microbes," 11 Dec. 2018 Players will have dozens of methods for approaching the mission, including feeding each of the men to the same rather hungry hippo, Liebold tells me. Nick Statt, The Verge, "How Hitman 2’s developers turned its gigantic levels into ever-evolving playgrounds," 18 Oct. 2018 In a 2003 experiment, Mark Mattson, a neuroscientist at Johns Hopkins University and the National Institute on Aging, found that mice fed on alternate days were healthier than mice that were calorie-restricted by 40 percent. Mark Barna, Discover Magazine, "Not So Fast," 24 Sep. 2018 In contrast to the optimistic message being fed to the masses, there has been a feeling of tension in Pyongyang these days. Fox News, "AP Analysis: In North and South Korea, 2 views of summit," 19 Sep. 2018 Earwigs are actually omnivorous, and primarily feed on decaying organic matter as well as those pest insects. The Editors, Good Housekeeping, "How to Control Earwigs in Your Garden and Keep Them From Getting in Your House," 27 July 2018 And while guidance from pediatricians remains that babies should be exclusively breastfed until six months, a new study published in JAMA Pediatrics found that feeding solid food to babies at an earlier age may help them sleep better. Ashley Welch, CBS News, "Why breastfeeding is the "gold standard" for babies' health," 10 July 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Stay tuned not only here but also to our social feeds this weekend! A. Camden Walker, Washington Post, "D.C.-area forecast: Mugginess and clouds today pave the way for periodic weekend rain," 8 June 2018 Take ElliQ, a robot-tablet combo that reminds the elderly to stay active while acting as a window into their family’s social media feeds. Matt Simon, WIRED, "We Need to Talk About Robots Trying to Pass as Humans," 7 June 2018 The company also posted the statement on its social media feeds. Melinda Morris, NOLA.com, "Using Ticketfly to go to a show? It's been hacked, company says," 31 May 2018 Facebook also placed a message at the top of the news feed explaining what happened to the 50 million users whose information was compromised. Abby Ohlheiser, The Seattle Times, "Beware the viral Facebook hoax that’s tricking people into thinking their account was hacked," 8 Oct. 2018 Joanna Gaines has already shared several sweet photos of her newborn, Crew Gaines, but her husband Chip Gaines's Instagram feed has been noticeably baby-free—until now! Taysha Murtaugh, Country Living, "Chip Gaines Just Shared His First-Ever Photo of Baby Crew, and It's Giving Us Baby Fever," 14 July 2018 Philipp said, that changes depending on the time of day or the age of the baby and even changes from the beginning to the end of the feed. Emily Williams, BostonGlobe.com, "Why the US should have supported global breastfeeding initiative," 10 July 2018 To increase the availability of other types of animal feed, China’s customs authority removed inspection requirements on a variety of agricultural byproducts, including peanut meal, cottonseed meal and rapeseed meal. Raymond Zhong, New York Times, "China’s Taste for Soybeans Is a Weak Spot in the Trade War With Trump," 9 July 2018 But with the drought and lack of feed, their cycles are out of whack. Josh Haner, National Geographic, "The Last Cowboys: A Cattle-Ranching Family Fights to Survive," 29 June 2018

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

See More

First Known Use of feed

Verb

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1a

Noun

1575, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for feed

Verb

Middle English feden, from Old English fēdan; akin to Old English fōda food — more at food

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about feed

Statistics for feed

Last Updated

18 May 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for feed

The first known use of feed was before the 12th century

See more words from the same century

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for feed

feed

verb

English Language Learners Definition of feed

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to give food to (someone or something)
: to give (something) as food to someone or something
: to produce or provide food for (someone or something)

feed

noun

English Language Learners Definition of feed (Entry 2 of 2)

: food for animals
informal : a large meal
: a part of a machine or system that sends material or electricity to other parts

feed

verb
\ ˈfēd How to pronounce feed (audio) \
fed\ ˈfed \; feeding

Kids Definition of feed

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : to give food to or give as food fed the dog She fed cereal to the baby.
2 : to take food into the body : eat cattle feeding on hay
3 : to supply with something necessary (as to growth or operation) It's important to feed plants with fertilizer. Two streams feed the lake.

Other Words from feed

feeder noun

feed

noun

Kids Definition of feed (Entry 2 of 2)

: food especially for livestock

feed

verb
\ ˈfēd How to pronounce feed (audio) \
fed\ ˈfed How to pronounce fed (audio) \; feeding

Medical Definition of feed

 (Entry 1 of 2)

transitive verb

1a : to give food to
b : to give as food
2 : to produce or provide food for

intransitive verb

: to consume food : eat

feed

noun

Medical Definition of feed (Entry 2 of 2)

1a : an act of eating
b : meal especially : a large meal
2a : food for livestock specifically : a mixture or preparation for feeding livestock
b : the amount given at each feeding

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on feed

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with feed

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for feed

Spanish Central: Translation of feed

Nglish: Translation of feed for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of feed for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about feed

Comments on feed

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

WORD OF THE DAY

to speak slightingly about or to degrade

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Challenging Vocabulary Quiz Returns!

  • stylized drawing of woman pole vaulting across gap to get trophy
  • Which is a synonym of fuliginous?
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

TAKE THE QUIZ
Dictionary Devil

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!