starve

verb
\ˈstärv \
starved; starving

Definition of starve 

intransitive verb

1a : to perish from lack of food

b : to suffer extreme hunger

2a archaic : to die of cold

b British : to suffer greatly from cold

3 : to suffer or perish from deprivation starved for affection

transitive verb

1a : to kill with hunger

b : to deprive of nourishment

c : to cause to capitulate by or as if by depriving of nourishment

2 : to destroy by or cause to suffer from deprivation

3 archaic : to kill with cold

Examples of starve in a Sentence

Without food they would starve. They left him to starve out in the desert. providing food for starving children They tried to starve their enemies into submission. It was clear that the dog had been starved. You don't have to starve yourself to lose weight.
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Recent Examples on the Web

By contrast, a patch of red signals danger, spotting a potato field, say, that’s starved for irrigation or fertilizer. Shawn Tully, Fortune, "This Agriculture Giant Is Bringing in the Drones to Modernize Farming From Cornfields to Vineyards," 19 June 2018 This city is starving for people who have the entrepreneurial spirit, who have the passion and commitment to start their own path. William Thornton, AL.com, "Woodfin tells Innovate Birmingham graduates 'this community needs you'," 13 Apr. 2018 In December last year, a video of a dying polar bear rummaging in trash and eating styrofoam, assumed to be starving, went viral on social media. Brigitte Osterath, USA TODAY, "Climate change is making polar bears go hungry, study finds," 1 Feb. 2018 Schools have 'starved the arts,' Sacramento mayor says. Phillip Reese, sacbee, "California schools are short of teachers. One reason? They’re going to Texas," 29 May 2018 Necrosis is a medical condition in which the body’s tissues die after being starved of oxygen. Alexia Fernandez, ajc, "A man smelled so bad a plane was diverted. Now, he’s dead from necrosis," 28 June 2018 The recent success of the England youth teams may provide hope for the future of international football, but many of these players will be starved of opportunities. SI.com, "England's World Cup Success Demonstrates the Importance of the Loan System to Player Development," 12 July 2018 For the hydration-starved, this hyaluronic concentrated booster serum is like a weekend retreat to a water park for your pores. Allure Editors, Allure, "The Best New Beauty Products This Month," 9 July 2018 For these, men starved themselves to death in hunger strikes. Michael Brendan Dougherty, National Review, "What Gerry Adams Leaves Behind," 10 Feb. 2018

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

15th century, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense 1a

History and Etymology for starve

Middle English sterven to die, starve, from Old English steorfan to die; akin to Old High German sterban to die, and probably to Lithuanian starinti to stiffen — more at stare

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Statistics for starve

Last Updated

14 Nov 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for starve

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

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More Definitions for starve

starve

verb

English Language Learners Definition of starve

: to suffer or die from lack of food : to suffer extreme hunger

: to cause (a person or animal) to suffer or die because of lack of food

: to want or need something very much

starve

verb
\ˈstärv \
starved; starving

Kids Definition of starve

1 : to suffer or die or cause to suffer or die from lack of food

2 : to suffer or cause to suffer from a lack of something other than food The dog was starving for affection.

starve

verb
\ˈstärv \
starved; starving

Medical Definition of starve 

intransitive verb

1 : to perish from lack of food

2 : to suffer extreme hunger

transitive verb

1 : to kill with hunger

2 : to deprive of nourishment

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Comments on starve

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