rav·​en·​ous | \ ˈra-və-nəs How to pronounce ravenous (audio) , ˈrav-nəs \

Definition of ravenous

1 : rapacious ravenous wolves
2 : very eager or greedy for food, satisfaction, or gratification a ravenous appetite

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Other Words from ravenous

ravenously adverb
ravenousness noun

Choose the Right Synonym for ravenous

voracious, gluttonous, ravenous, rapacious mean excessively greedy. voracious applies especially to habitual gorging with food or drink. teenagers are often voracious eaters gluttonous applies to one who delights in eating or acquiring things especially beyond the point of necessity or satiety. an admiral who was gluttonous for glory ravenous implies excessive hunger and suggests violent or grasping methods of dealing with food or with whatever satisfies an appetite. a nation with a ravenous lust for territorial expansion rapacious often suggests excessive and utterly selfish acquisitiveness or avarice. rapacious developers indifferent to environmental concerns

ravishing or ravenous?

Ravenous and ravishing are not synonyms, and mixing these two words may lead to potentially awkward writing or conversation. Ravenous is commonly used with the meaning “very eager or greedy for food, satisfaction, or gratification,” and ravishing means “unusually attractive, pleasing, or striking.” If you find yourself hungry and standing in front of a spectacular-looking meal you would say (of the food) “that looks ravishing,” and (of yourself) “I am ravenous.” You may, of course, describe yourself as ravishing, but should be aware that you are commenting on your appearance rather than your hunger.

Examples of ravenous in a Sentence

By the time dinner was ready, we were ravenous. we were ravenous after our canoe paddling, and the chili bubbling over the campfire smelled heavenly
Recent Examples on the Web Enormous and bearded, condescending and fond, ravenous, sad-eyed, the pair of them. Elizabeth Mccracken, Harpers Magazine, "The Souvenir Museum," 5 Jan. 2021 Picture that moment as The Show and the rest of the Aztecs’ ravenous fan base lost its ever-loving marbles and the Mesa shook. Bryce Miller Columnist, San Diego Union-Tribune, "Column: Sizzling game for Aztecs’ Matt Mitchell unfolds in silence against BYU," 18 Dec. 2020 Each of them has raised their IPO price ranges in recent days in anticipation of ravenous market demand. Nicolás Rivero, Quartz, "The pandemic created the hottest IPO market of all time," 8 Dec. 2020 In a cruel irony for California, the ravenous wildfires driven by global warming are pumping out tens of millions of tons of carbon dioxide that will only drive global temperatures higher. Chronicle Staff, SFChronicle.com, "California wildfires: Live updates Sept. 16-17," 20 Sep. 2020 The stakes are high, given that there are 300,000 souls on board the ship, and the ark is speeding toward New Earth at the speed of light with a ravenous infectious alien life form on board. Jennifer Ouellette, Ars Technica, "Bruce Willis returns to space to kick some alien derriere in Breach trailer," 11 Nov. 2020 The alternative is in the hands of the progressive insurgents, those truth tellers whose agenda requires deficit spending to promote the public good, and not to feed the ravenous appetites of an entrenched oligarchy and a warfare state. Jackson Lears, The New York Review of Books, "Don’t Wish for a Restoration," 3 Nov. 2020 But Rye’s older brother, Gig, has his eye set on Ursula the Great, a striptease artist who sings in a cage with a ravenous cougar. Ron Charles, Washington Post, "‘The Cold Millions,’ Jess Walter’s celebration of forgotten heroes, is one of the most captivating novels of the year," 29 Oct. 2020 Authorities in California, already grappling with the most ravenous fire season ever, were preparing for more Friday as fire weather was set to return to the northern half of the state over the weekend. NBC News, "Power outages planned for nearly 500,000 as California braces for more fires," 24 Oct. 2020

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

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Time Traveler for ravenous

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

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Last Updated

17 Jan 2021

Cite this Entry

“Ravenous.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/ravenous. Accessed 24 Jan. 2021.

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More Definitions for ravenous


How to pronounce ravenous (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of ravenous

: very hungry


rav·​en·​ous | \ ˈra-və-nəs How to pronounce ravenous (audio) \

Kids Definition of ravenous

: very hungry

Other Words from ravenous

ravenously adverb

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Comments on ravenous

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