succumb

verb
suc·cumb | \sə-ˈkəm \
succumbed; succumbing; succumbs

Definition of succumb 

intransitive verb

1 : to yield to superior strength or force or overpowering appeal or desire succumb to temptation

2 : to be brought to an end (such as death) by the effect of destructive or disruptive forces

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Synonyms & Antonyms for succumb

Synonyms

bow, cave (in), give in, submit, surrender, yield

Antonyms

hold off, resist

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Choose the Right Synonym for succumb

yield, submit, capitulate, succumb, relent, defer mean to give way to someone or something that one can no longer resist. yield may apply to any sort or degree of giving way before force, argument, persuasion, or entreaty. yields too easily in any argument submit suggests full surrendering after resistance or conflict to the will or control of another. a repentant sinner vowing to submit to the will of God capitulate stresses the fact of ending all resistance and may imply either a coming to terms (as with an adversary) or hopelessness in the face of an irresistible opposing force. officials capitulated to the protesters' demands succumb implies weakness and helplessness to the one that gives way or an overwhelming power to the opposing force. a stage actor succumbing to the lure of Hollywood relent implies a yielding through pity or mercy by one who holds the upper hand. finally relented and let the children stay up late defer implies a voluntary yielding or submitting out of respect or reverence for or deference and affection toward another. I defer to your expertise in these matters

Did You Know?

If the idea of someone succumbing brings to mind the image of a person lying down before more powerful forces, you have an excellent grasp of the Latin that gave us succumb. Succumb derives from the French word succomber, which is itself from the Latin word succumbere, meaning "to fall down" or "to yield." Succumbere was formed by combining sub-, meaning "under," with -cumbere, meaning "to lie down." The earliest application of succumb in the late 15th century was as a transitive verb meaning "to bring down" or "to overwhelm," but this sense is now obsolete. The current sense of "to yield" first appeared in print in the early 17th century; the more specific use-yielding to a disease or other destructive force-followed two centuries later.

Examples of succumb in a Sentence

Lepanto occupies a curious military fault line between ancient and modern. It was fought with galleys almost identical to those that had clashed in this same gulf sixteen centuries before, when the ships of Antony and Cleopatra succumbed to those of Octavian at the Battle of Actium. — Colin Thubron, New York Times Book Review, 9 Apr. 2009 Last spring, the Knight Ridder chain succumbed to pressure from its largest private investor and sold off its entire lineup of 32 papers to the McClatchy Co. for more than $4 billion. — Eric Klinenberg, Mother Jones, March/April 2007 Yet after Paul died in 1978 and his successor John Paul I succumbed to a heart attack only 34 days into his papacy, Wojyla was so oblivious to his impending fate that he spent the first day of the new papal conclave nonchalantly browsing through a quarterly review of Marxist theory. — David Van Biema, Time, 11 Apr. 2005 Interviews with cadets, police officers and investigators trying to crack down on crime inside Mexico City's 80,000-officer force revealed that even the most earnest cops often succumb to the temptations that are both plentiful and low risk. — Alan Zarembo, Newsweek, 4 Dec. 2000 They will pressure you, and you must try not to succumb. he finally succumbed and let his wife get rid of his dilapidated easy chair
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Recent Examples on the Web

On Friday, the Medical Examiner’s Office said Carole Paladino died of multiple blunt trauma and John Paladino succumbed to thermal injuries. Max Cohen, Philly.com, "House explosion that killed Gloucester County couple was accidental, fire marshal rules," 13 July 2018 So many of these people are in financially depressed circumstance and succumb to temptation. Jessica Anderson, baltimoresun.com, "10 plead guilty in prison smuggling scheme, authorities say," 12 July 2018 One in four people die, some succumbing to the infection within a day or two of getting sick, according to the CDC. Natalie Dreier, ajc, "Man contracts flesh-eating bacteria while crabbing, could lose arms, legs," 10 July 2018 Later on, some of the women suspect there's an undercover cop in their ranks, and many of them succumb to paranoia. Ben Sachs, Chicago Reader, "Lesbian revolutionaries smash sexual taboos to undermine the patriarchy in Bruce LaBruce's The Misandrists," 6 July 2018 One of the men, later identified as 21-year-old Halifu Appling, succumbed to his injuries the next day, while the other victim was listed in serious but stable condition following the shooting. Benjy Egel, sacbee, "Three men arrested in connection with fatal shooting in North Sacramento," 4 July 2018 Toronto Police confirmed Sunday in a statement that both men — Smart and Ernest Modekwe, 28, a producer known as Koba Prime — succumbed to their injuries. Carly Mallenbaum, USA TODAY, "Smoke Dawg, rapper and Drake tourmate, shot to death in Toronto," 1 July 2018 However, the victim succumbed to his injuries early Tuesday morning, Berry said. Kimberly Rapanut, azcentral, "Man dies in stabbing at west Mesa apartment complex," 29 May 2018 When the news emerged that Equifax had succumbed to a colossal data breach from mid-May through July of last year, consumers were livid—in part because the ransacking was entirely preventable. Robert Hackett, Fortune, "Thousands of Companies Are Still Downloading the Vulnerability That Wrecked Equifax," 7 May 2018

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

1604, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for succumb

French & Latin; French succomber, from Latin succumbere, from sub- + -cumbere to lie down; akin to Latin cubare to lie

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Statistics for succumb

Last Updated

11 Oct 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for succumb

The first known use of succumb was in 1604

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More Definitions for succumb

succumb

verb

English Language Learners Definition of succumb

: to stop trying to resist something

: to die

succumb

verb
suc·cumb | \sə-ˈkəm \
succumbed; succumbing

Kids Definition of succumb

1 : to yield to force or pressure Don't succumb to temptation.

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