voracious

adjective
vo·​ra·​cious | \vȯ-ˈrā-shəs, və-\

Definition of voracious 

1 : having a huge appetite : ravenous

2 : excessively eager : insatiable a voracious reader

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from voracious

voraciously adverb
voraciousness noun

Choose the Right Synonym for voracious

voracious, gluttonous, ravenous, rapacious mean excessively greedy. voracious applies especially to habitual gorging with food or drink. teenagers are often voracious eaters gluttonous applies to one who delights in eating or acquiring things especially beyond the point of necessity or satiety. an admiral who was gluttonous for glory ravenous implies excessive hunger and suggests violent or grasping methods of dealing with food or with whatever satisfies an appetite. a nation with a ravenous lust for territorial expansion rapacious often suggests excessive and utterly selfish acquisitiveness or avarice. rapacious developers indifferent to environmental concerns

Veracious or voracious?

Take care to distinguish between the near-homophones veracious and voracious, whose similarities in sound mask utterly different meanings. Veracious (“honest, truthful”), like its cousins veritable, verify, and very, concerns that which is true. Voracious (”having a greedy or insatiable appetite”), on the other hand, describes the urge to consume large quantities of something, often food, books, or ideas. One way to remember the difference is that the one with the E as its second letter means "truE," and the one with the O as its second letter means "ravenOus." Not coincidentally, these adjectives have near-homophonous noun derivatives: veracity ("truthfulness") and voracity ("the quality or state of being voracious").

Did You Know?

Voracious is one of several English words that derive from the Latin verb vorare, which means "to eat greedily" or "to devour." "Vorare" is also an ancestor of "devour" and of the "-ivorous" words, which describe the diets of various animals. These include "carnivorous" ("meat-eating"), "herbivorous" ("plant-eating"), "omnivorous" ("feeding on both animals and plants"), "frugivorous" ("fruit-eating"), "graminivorous" ("feeding on grass"), and "piscivorous" ("fish-eating").

Examples of voracious in a Sentence

He has a voracious appetite. it seemed like the voracious kitten was eating her weight in food every day

Recent Examples on the Web

Scientists say predators are needed to prevent the moose herd, which totals about 1,500, from becoming so large that the voracious animals overeat trees and shrubs. John Flesher, The Seattle Times, "Wolf taken to Isle Royale National Park this fall dies," 14 Nov. 2018 Today, for instance, the voracious Indo-Pacific lionfish is gobbling up local fish in the west Atlantic, while the Asian carp threatens the ecosystem of the Great Lakes. Amanda Foreman, WSJ, "Overrun by Alien Species," 1 Nov. 2018 Amazon’s voracious hunger for warehouses, part of a larger bid to expand and expedite its logistics and shipping network, has helped make industrial warehouses in upscale neighborhoods a hot commodity. Patrick Sisson, Curbed, "Amazon is coming for the small corner store," 2 Oct. 2018 Chuck Abud was also a voracious lobbyist for the expansion of the World Cup in the 1970s — an expansion that didn't happen until the 80s. Lori Higgins, Detroit Free Press, "What soccer-loving uncle taught 2 top Michigan teachers," 13 July 2018 Overgrazing is a major cause of pastureland degradation, especially by the voracious and sharp-hooved goats whose numbers have exploded to supply the valuable trade in cashmere. Simon Denyer, Washington Post, "Mongolia’s nomadic way of life threatened by climate change, neglect, modernity," 8 July 2018 Turn leaves over to spot cabbage worms that decimate leaves with voracious munching. R. Daniel Foster, latimes.com, "What a showoff: Ghostly Brugmansia delivers spectacular garden blooms," 22 June 2018 Among those challenges is the steady northern migration of black sea bass, a voracious species known for its distinctive black stripe. David Abel, BostonGlobe.com, "Fish wars loom as climate change pushes lobster, cod, and other species north," 21 June 2018 The Xiphactinus was not quite half as long but equally as voracious. Matt Campbell, kansascity, "Prehistoric sea monsters come to life on your phone in new Museum at Prairiefire show," 16 June 2018

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

See More

First Known Use of voracious

1635, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for voracious

Latin vorac-, vorax, from vorare to devour; akin to Old English ācweorran to guzzle, Latin gurges whirlpool, Greek bibrōskein to devour

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about voracious

Listen to Our Podcast about voracious

Dictionary Entries near voracious

VOP

VOR

-vora

voracious

voracity

vorago

vorant

Statistics for voracious

Last Updated

3 Dec 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for voracious

The first known use of voracious was in 1635

See more words from the same year

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for voracious

voracious

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of voracious

: having or showing a tendency to eat very large amounts of food

voracious

adjective
vo·​ra·​cious | \vȯ-ˈrā-shəs, və-\

Kids Definition of voracious

1 : very hungry : having a huge appetite

2 : very eager a voracious reader

Other Words from voracious

voraciously adverb

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on voracious

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with voracious

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for voracious

Spanish Central: Translation of voracious

Nglish: Translation of voracious for Spanish Speakers

Comments on voracious

What made you want to look up voracious? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

WORD OF THE DAY

a nest or breeding place

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Late Autumn 2018 Words of the Day Quiz

  • frosted-autumn-leaves
  • Which is a synonym of yahoo?
True or False

Test your knowledge - and maybe learn something along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Word Winder's CrossWinder

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!