out·​live | \ˌau̇t-ˈliv \
outlived; outliving; outlives

Definition of outlive 

transitive verb

1 : to live beyond or longer than outlived most of his friends outlive its usefulness

2 : to survive the effects of universities … outlive many political and social changes— J. B. Conant

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Synonyms for outlive


outlast, outwear

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Examples of outlive in a Sentence

No mother wants to outlive her children. He outlived his wife by 10 years.

Recent Examples on the Web

Social Security benefits can’t be outlived, reduced by stock market downturns or stolen by fraudsters, Maestas notes. Liz Weston, The Seattle Times, "How women who retire with their husbands often lose out," 17 Sep. 2018 At the current $3,000 deduction limit some capital losses will outlive the person. WSJ, "Fair Indexing for Taxes Can Be Complicated," 14 Aug. 2018 By playing these multiple roles, natural gas will long outlive coal and prove useful well into the latter half of the 21st century. David Roberts, Vox, "Clean energy is catching up to natural gas," 8 Aug. 2018 Ironically, the political activity that took place in response to Sputnik would long outlive the satellite itself. Amy B Wang, Washington Post, "With Putin’s ‘invincible’ missile taunt, some hear chilling echoes of Sputnik and the Cold War," 2 Mar. 2018 And by creating opportunities for other countries to ramp up production, new competition is created that could outlive any trade dispute. Ben Popken /, NBC News, "Trump's trade war may soon impact consumers' wallets and paychecks," 11 July 2018 Jack Nicklaus wants to outlive all challenges to his collection of 18 major titles. Marcus Hayes, Philly.com, "Curtis Strange embraces the idea of Brooks Koepka joining his U.S. Open club," 18 June 2018 At the same time, given that wives tend to outlive their husbands, women are positioned to control an increasing share of a $30 trillion wealth transfer under way as baby boomers leave assets to their children. Lisa Beilfuss, WSJ, "Edward Jones Taps Penny Pennington to Lead Brokerage," 8 May 2018 But even patients whose cancers had very low levels of these mutations outlived patients who got chemotherapy by a median of four months. Melissa Healy, latimes.com, "For many lung cancer patients, Keytruda is a better initial treatment than chemotherapy, study finds," 5 June 2018

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

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Statistics for outlive

Last Updated

6 Dec 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for outlive

The first known use of outlive was in the 15th century

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More Definitions for outlive



English Language Learners Definition of outlive

: to live longer than (someone)

: to continue to exist longer than (something) : to outlast (something)


out·​live | \au̇t-ˈliv \
outlived; outliving

Kids Definition of outlive

: to live or last longer than That rule has outlived its usefulness.

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More from Merriam-Webster on outlive

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with outlive

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for outlive

Spanish Central: Translation of outlive

Nglish: Translation of outlive for Spanish Speakers

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a soft lustrous wool fabric with mohair

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