\ ˈkrāv How to pronounce crave (audio) \
craved; craving

Definition of crave

transitive verb

1 : to ask for earnestly : beg, demand crave a pardon for neglect
2a : to want greatly : need craves drugs craves attention
b : to yearn for crave a vanished youth

intransitive verb

: to have a strong or inward desire craves after affection

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Other Words from crave

craver noun

Choose the Right Synonym for crave

desire, wish, want, crave, covet mean to have a longing for. desire stresses the strength of feeling and often implies strong intention or aim. desires to start a new life wish sometimes implies a general or transient longing especially for the unattainable. wishes for permanent world peace want specifically suggests a felt need or lack. wants to have a family crave stresses the force of physical appetite or emotional need. craves sweets covet implies strong envious desire. covets his rise to fame

Examples of crave in a Sentence

Like many celebrities, he craves attention. I was craving french fries, so I pulled into the nearest fast-food restaurant.
Recent Examples on the Web On one hand, the country’s new rulers crave international recognition and need foreign aid as the economy shrinks—something that would require them to accommodate international demands on women’s rights and minorities. Saeed Shah, WSJ, 8 Oct. 2021 These employees also generally crave stability and are risk-averse. Ginger Conlon, Forbes, 5 Oct. 2021 Hundreds of pages in, as new characters continue to be introduced, readers may crave some variation. Los Angeles Times, 22 Sep. 2021 Like me, many Houstonians crave a dip in cool, refreshing waters to relieve them from the unbearable heat. Erica Cheng, Chron, 22 Sep. 2021 Most moviegoers crave safety in a large public space, and theaters can offer them more security with a quick check at the door. David Sims, The Atlantic, 24 Aug. 2021 Humans crave connection, especially while working from different places. Washington Post, 20 Aug. 2021 Many local foodies crave the farm-to-table connection with garlic, according to Greg Kosmeder, who owns and farms Copper Kettle, following organic procedures, with his wife, Cathy. Jennifer Rude Klett, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, 17 Aug. 2021 In some sense, diners crave an escape from reality but also want to feel protected. Anne Quito, Quartz, 8 June 2021

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

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

History and Etymology for crave

Middle English, from Old English crafian; akin to Old Norse krefja to crave, demand

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Time Traveler for crave

Time Traveler

The first known use of crave was before the 12th century

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Statistics for crave

Last Updated

17 Oct 2021

Cite this Entry

“Crave.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 20 Oct. 2021.

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More Definitions for crave



English Language Learners Definition of crave

: to have a very strong desire for (something)


\ ˈkrāv How to pronounce crave (audio) \
craved; craving

Kids Definition of crave

1 : to want greatly : long for crave chocolate The stray dog craved affection.
2 : to ask for earnestly "Sire, there is a messenger from the enemy who craves audience."— C. S. Lewis, The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe

More from Merriam-Webster on crave

Nglish: Translation of crave for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of crave for Arabic Speakers


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