Definition of sustain
1 : to give support or relief to
4 : to support the weight of : prop; also : to carry or withstand (a weight or pressure)
5 : to buoy up sustained by hope
7a : to support as true, legal, or justb : to allow or admit as valid the court sustained the motion
8 : to support by adequate proof : confirm testimony that sustains our contention
sustainedlyplay \-ˈstā-nəd-lē, -ˈstānd-lē\ adverb
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Examples of sustain in a Sentence
Hope sustained us during that difficult time.
The roof, unable to sustain the weight of all the snow, collapsed.
The army sustained heavy losses.
He sustained serious injuries in the accident.
Definition of sustain
: a musical effect that prolongs a note's resonance utilizing heavy sustain on his guitar — Bill Dahl
Recent Examples of sustain from the Web
In all, the team started three different quarterbacks throughout the year, had a fourth sustain a season-ending injury during fall camp and a fifth waiting in the wings in case of an emergency.
These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'sustain'. Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.
First Known Use of sustain
SUSTAIN Defined for English Language Learners
Definition of sustain for English Language Learners
: to provide what is needed for (something or someone) to exist, continue, etc.
: to hold up the weight of (something)
: to deal with or experience (something bad or unpleasant)
SUSTAIN Defined for Kids
Definition of sustain for Students
1 : to provide with what is needed Food sustains life.
2 : to keep up the spirits of Hope sustained us.
3 : to keep up : prolong This author's books sustain my interest.
4 : to hold up the weight of The roof couldn't sustain the weight of the snow.
5 : 2experience The army sustained heavy losses.
6 : to allow or uphold as true, legal, or fair The judge sustained the motion to dismiss the case.
Seen and Heard
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