nour·ish | \ ˈnər-ish , ˈnə-rish \
nourished; nourishing; nourishes

Definition of nourish 

transitive verb

1 : nurture, rear … to save my boy, to nourish and bring him up … —Shakespeare

2 : to promote the growth of no occasions to exercise the feelings nor nourish passion —L. O. Coxe nourished soccer as a sport in this country needed to nourish his spiritual life

3a : to furnish or sustain with nutriment : feed Plants are nourished by rain and soil.

b : maintain, support their profits … nourish other criminal activities —Beverly Smith

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Other words from nourish

nourisher noun

Examples of nourish in a Sentence

Vitamins are added to the shampoo to nourish the hair. a friendship nourished by trust

Recent Examples on the Web

There were age classes of old fish that were absolutely desperate to nourish themselves. Bryce Miller,, "Wildly-popular Lake Barrett adjusting its bass-catching expectations," 26 Apr. 2018 More so, it's infused with four potent strains of probiotics — hence the kefir — all of which nourish and calm the complexion. Kaleigh Fasanella, Allure, "The Best Pressed Face Serums to Add to Your Skin-Care Routine," 26 Jan. 2018 Try on the notion that your primary role is to nourish and feed the people around you. Chelsea Rickling, Marie Claire, "Taurus Weekly Horoscope," 6 Feb. 2017 Many of the region's cultures, including the Maya and the Mexica, believed that human sacrifice nourished the gods. Lizzie Wade, Science | AAAS, "Feeding the gods: Hundreds of skulls reveal massive scale of human sacrifice in Aztec capital," 21 June 2018 This light meal is highly recommended to hydrate and nourish the body during the long summer hours. Said Ahmed-zaid, idahostatesman, "Finding purpose in fasting during Ramadan | Idaho Statesman," 21 May 2018 Just as food nourishes the body, play promotes language, cognition, spatial reasoning and other talents in ways scientists are still trying to understand. Erik Vance, Scientific American, "Sorry, Mom and Dad, Toys Cannot Supercharge Your Baby," 15 May 2018 The dumplings are good for the soul, while the vegetables and lentils nourish the body. Sunset, "6 Gourmet Backpacking Recipes for a Tasty Adventure," 22 Jan. 2018 Aside from different nesting preferences, the main difference between bees and wasps is that bees feed their larvae pollen, while wasps—a category that includes yellow jackets and hornets—nourish theirs with insects. Rebecca Straus, Good Housekeeping, "6 Ways To Keep Wasps Away From You," 6 June 2016

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

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for nourish

Middle English nurishen, from Anglo-French nuriss-, stem of nurrir, norrir, from Latin nutrire to suckle, nourish; akin to Greek nan to flow, noteros damp, Sanskrit snauti it drips

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Statistics for nourish

Last Updated

6 Sep 2018

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Time Traveler for nourish

The first known use of nourish was in the 14th century

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More Definitions for nourish



English Language Learners Definition of nourish

: to provide (someone or something) with food and other things that are needed to live, be healthy, etc.

: to cause (something) to develop or grow stronger


nour·ish | \ ˈnər-ish \
nourished; nourishing

Kids Definition of nourish

: to cause to grow or live in a healthy state especially by providing with enough good food or nutrients

Other words from nourish

nourishing adjective a nourishing meal


transitive verb
nour·ish | \ ˈnər-ish, ˈnə-rish \

Medical Definition of nourish 

: to furnish or sustain with nutriment : feed

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