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

Alas, starving my kids and/or letting their hunger devolve into tantrums is not a feasible way forward for me. Michelle Ruiz, Vogue, "Picky Eaters? For Parents, Food-Shaming Is All Too Real," 28 Jan. 2019 Famine by definition is large numbers of people who are starving to death. Eric Johnson, Recode, "Big data could ‘stop famines from ever happening again,’ says World Bank Group President Jim Yong Kim," 24 Sep. 2018 Day 1: You’re probably starving after your late-morning flight into Atlanta’s Hartsfield-Jackson International. Matthew Monagan, Condé Nast Traveler, "Road Trip: 3 Days in Georgia, the Hollywood of the South," 20 July 2018 Humanitarian aid groups have said that 14 million Yemenis are at risk of starving to death. WSJ, "Secretary Pompeo Is Far Too Forgiving of the Saudis," 3 Dec. 2018 Around two-thirds of the country's population of 27 million relies on aid and 8.4 million are at risk of starving. Ahmed Al-haj, Fox News, "Officials: Heavy fighting near Yemen's Hodeida kills 80," 5 Aug. 2018 If the water stays warm too long, the corals starve and leave behind lifeless carbonate skeletons. Scott K. Johnson, Ars Technica, "It’s too soon to tell if the Great Barrier Reef’s bleaching was a catastrophe," 27 July 2018 Around two-thirds of the country’s population of 27 million relies on aid and 8.4 million are at risk of starving. Time, "The Battle for Control of a Key Port City in Yemen Intensifies," 20 June 2018 Around two-thirds of the country's population of 27 million relies on aid and 8.4 million are already at risk of starving. NBC News, "Saudi-led forces seize airport in Yemen port city of Hodeida," 16 June 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

7 Feb 2019

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
chiefly US : 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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More from Merriam-Webster on starve

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with starve

Spanish Central: Translation of starve

Nglish: Translation of starve for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of starve for Arabic Speakers

Comments on starve

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