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
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").
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").
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 WebTheir voracious caterpillars have caused widespread damage to forests, parks and trees in streets and yards.
Beth Botts, Chicago Tribune, 18 June 2022 Smallmouth bass, even more voracious, arrived in the 1990s.
Brittany Peterson And John Flesher, USA TODAY, 15 June 2022 Smallmouth bass, even more voracious, arrived in the 1990s.
CBS News, 15 June 2022 The disconnect is a result of India’s uneven growth, which is powered by the voracious consumption of the country’s upper strata but whose benefits often do not extend beyond the urban middle class.
New York Times, 13 June 2022 The wine is named for the voracious hares that feed on the sap of grapevines, causing damage to vineyards.
Ellen Bhang, BostonGlobe.com, 7 June 2022 This level of success reveals a voracious desire for innovation and high performance — principles that help McLaren stay one step ahead of the competition.
Forbes, 1 June 2022 Goldfish, as voracious eaters, will devour snails, small insects, fish eggs, and young fish—and will wildly out-compete native fish.
Elizabeth Gamillo, Smithsonian Magazine, 31 May 2022 As a teenager, the voracious bookworm became frustrated with the cumbersome, inadequate technology available to blind and visually impaired readers.
Robert Gauthier, Los Angeles Times, 27 May 2022 See More
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.