subsistence

noun sub·sis·tence \ səb-ˈsi-stən(t)s \
Updated on: 18 May 2018

Definition of subsistence

1 a (1) : real being : existence
(2) : the condition of remaining in existence : continuation, persistence
b : an essential characteristic quality of something that exists
c : the character possessed by whatever is logically conceivable
2 : means of subsisting: such as
a : the minimum (as of food and shelter) necessary to support life
b : a source or means of obtaining the necessities of life

subsistent

play \səb-ˈsi-stənt\ adjective

Examples of subsistence in a Sentence

  1. They depended on hunting and fishing for subsistence.

  2. Farming is their means of subsistence.

Recent Examples of subsistence from the Web

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'subsistence.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

Origin and Etymology of subsistence

Middle English, from Late Latin subsistentia, from subsistent-, subsistens, present participle of subsistere


SUBSISTENCE Defined for English Language Learners

subsistence

Definition of subsistence for English Language Learners

  • : the amount of food, money, etc., that is needed to stay alive


SUBSISTENCE Defined for Kids

subsistence

noun sub·sis·tence \ səb-ˈsis-təns \

Definition of subsistence for Students

: the smallest amount (as of food and clothing) necessary to support life


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