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

Embrace this lunation by finding the light within the darkness and focusing on practices that nourish you. Aliza Kelly Faragher, Allure, "What June's Leo Horoscope Means for You," 29 May 2018 Prebiotics, on the other hand, are a type of plant fiber often found in vegetables that nourishes good bacteria. Alexandra Sifferlin, Time, "10 Foods Filled With Probiotics," 12 Apr. 2018 Just as bodies are broken down in death by decomposers, every bit of them transformed into the matter that nourishes new life, so is the creative process a constant cycle. NBC News, "7 pep talks to get you through the work week," 2 Apr. 2018 Understanding how to nourish and heal the postpartum body is key for a new family. Lauren Ingram, WSJ, "6 Great Go-To Baby Gifts (and 6 to Avoid)," 12 July 2018 Cleansers crafted from herbs in the Lamiaceae family, including peppermint, spearmint, basil, sage, rosemary, and lavender, can be deeply detoxifying and nourishing for your scalp, thanks to their antibacterial properties. Kari Molvar, Vogue, "The Supercharged Detox Ingredient That’s Missing From Your Shampoo," 14 June 2018 Holt’s example is plain: Think well, eat well and seek out those who will nourish and challenge you. Parul Sehgal, New York Times, "Essays That Make Sense of the Infinite and the Infinitesimal," 15 May 2018 If social interactions were evaluated for their capacity to nourish, where, then, would digital communications fall? Cassie Owens,, "Philadelphians are lonely, and young people feel it the most, says study," 7 May 2018 According to a Dermatologist Urang Vitamin Oil Serum This facial oil uses rosehip and jojoba oils to hydrate and nourish the skin, which penetrate deeply and provide a brightening effect. Meghan Overdeep, Southern Living, "Hold the Phone: Costco Just Entered the Korean Beauty Game With This All-In-One Kit," 10 Apr. 2018

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

18 Oct 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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Comments on nourish

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


exaggeratedly or childishly emotional

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