noun (1)
\ ˈsāk How to pronounce sake (audio) \

Definition of sake

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : end, purpose for the sake of argument
2a : the good, advantage, or enhancement of some entity (such as an ideal) free to pursue learning for its own sake— M. S. Eisenhower
b : personal or social welfare, safety, or benefit


noun (2)
sa·​ke | \ ˈsä-kē How to pronounce sake (audio) \
variants: or saki

Definition of sake (Entry 2 of 2)

: a Japanese alcoholic beverage of fermented rice often served hot

First Known Use of sake

Noun (1)

13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Noun (2)

1682, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for sake

Noun (1)

Middle English, dispute, guilt, purpose, from Old English sacu guilt, action at law; akin to Old High German sahha action at law, cause, Old English sēcan to seek — more at seek

Noun (2)

Japanese sake

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Time Traveler for sake

Time Traveler

The first known use of sake was in the 13th century

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Cite this Entry

“Sake.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 20 Jun. 2021.

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More Definitions for sake


\ ˈsāk How to pronounce sake (audio) \

Kids Definition of sake

1 : purpose Let's assume, for the sake of argument, that it was a mistake.
2 : welfare sense 1, benefit "… when you see the castle you must persuade him to stay there, for his own sake."— Pearl S. Buck, The Big Wave


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