suffocate

play
verb suf·fo·cate \ˈsə-fə-ˌkāt\

Definition of suffocate

suffocated

;

suffocating

  1. transitive verb
  2. 1a (1) :  to stop the respiration of (as by strangling or asphyxiation) (2) :  to deprive of oxygenb :  to make uncomfortable by want of fresh air

  3. 2 :  to impede or stop the development of

  4. intransitive verb
  5. 1 :  to become suffocated:a (1) :  to die from being unable to breathe (2) :  to die from lack of oxygenb :  to be uncomfortable through lack of fresh air

  6. 2 :  to become checked in development

suffocation

play \ˌsə-fə-ˈkā-shən\ noun

suffocative

play \ˈsə-fə-ˌkā-tiv\ adjective

Examples of suffocate in a Sentence

  1. Don't put that pillow over her face—she could suffocate.

  2. The poor dog could suffocate in the car on a hot day like this.

  3. The victims were found suffocated.

Recent Examples of suffocate from the Web

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

Origin and Etymology of suffocate

Middle English, from Latin suffocatus, past participle of suffocare to choke, stifle, from sub- + fauces throat


SUFFOCATE Defined for English Language Learners

suffocate

play
verb

Definition of suffocate for English Language Learners

  • : to die because you are unable to breathe

  • : to kill (someone) by making breathing impossible

  • : to be uncomfortable because there is not enough fresh air


SUFFOCATE Defined for Kids

suffocate

play
verb suf·fo·cate \ˈsə-fə-ˌkāt\

Definition of suffocate for Students

suffocated

;

suffocating

  1. 1 :  to kill by stopping the breathing of or by depriving of oxygen to breathe

  2. 2 :  to die from being unable to breathe

  3. 3 :  to be or become choked or smothered Weeds are suffocating the flowers we planted.

  4. 4 :  to suffer from lack of fresh air


Medical Dictionary

suffocate

play
verb suf·fo·cate \ˈsəf-ə-ˌkāt\

Medical Definition of suffocate

suffocated

;

suffocating

  1. 1

  2. transitive verb

  3. :  to stop the respiration of (as by strangling or asphyxiation)

  4. 2:  to deprive of oxygen

  5. intransitive verb

  6. :  to die from being unable to breathe

suffocative

\-ˌkāt-iv\play adjective


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