life·​blood | \ˈlīf-ˈbləd, -ˌbləd\

Definition of lifeblood 

1 : blood regarded as the seat of vitality

2 : a vital or life-giving force or component freedom of inquiry is the lifeblood of a university

Examples of lifeblood in a Sentence

The town's lifeblood has always been its fishing industry. The neighborhoods are the lifeblood of this city. the lifeblood that flows through his veins
See More

Recent Examples on the Web

To Heat President Pat Riley, players such as McGruder, players who emerge from unknowns during those summer leagues, who continue to improve, stand as the lifeblood of rounding out rosters. Ira Winderman,, "Rodney McGruder remains answer to Heat's summer commitment," 10 May 2018 Washington considers Beijing’s support for the Kim regime to be North Korea’s economic lifeblood, enabling its survival despite global sanctions. Andrew Jeong, WSJ, "For Leverage Against U.S., North Korea’s Kim Seeks Help From Old Friends," 8 Oct. 2018 In short, the platform’s lifeblood is suffering, and YouTube’s response to the crisis has been terrible. Patricia Hernandez, The Verge, "YouTube is failing its creators," 21 Sep. 2018 Tourism is the lifeblood of the tribe’s economy, with many residents making a living by working in the area’s lodge, cafe and small store, or packing camping gear onto the backs of mules headed up and down an eight-mile trail. Washington Post, "Flooding forces 200 evacuations near Grand Canyon waterfalls," 12 July 2018 Bulgari's commitment to helping restore Rome's riches is now literally set in stone, while ensuring the brand's lifeblood continues to flow. Alice B-b, A-LIST, "No Place Like Rome," 4 July 2018 But taxing the lifeblood of the community isn’t the way to go about it. Wendy Lee,, "Google tax to go before voters as tech giant’s hometown puts proposal on ballot," 26 June 2018 The approach targets cargo-moving industries that are the lifeblood of the Southern California economy but responsible for much of the most harmful, smog-forming emissions. Tony Barboza,, "Southern California air quality officials will craft rules governing warehouse, rail yard pollution," 4 May 2018 Water – the lifeblood of the arid West – is often rendered useless after passing through the oil fields. Heather Richards, The Christian Science Monitor, "Former rodeo clown proposes reusing industry wastewater in Wyoming," 2 Apr. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'lifeblood.' 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 lifeblood

1579, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about lifeblood

Statistics for lifeblood

Last Updated

30 Nov 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for lifeblood

The first known use of lifeblood was in 1579

See more words from the same year

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for lifeblood



English Language Learners Definition of lifeblood

: the most important part of something : the part of something that provides its strength and energy

: a person's blood

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on lifeblood

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with lifeblood

Spanish Central: Translation of lifeblood

Nglish: Translation of lifeblood for Spanish Speakers

Comments on lifeblood

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


the figure or shape of a crescent moon

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Late Autumn 2018 Words of the Day Quiz

  • frosted-autumn-leaves
  • Which is a synonym of yahoo?
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

Word Winder's CrossWinder

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


Love words? Need even more definitions?

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