1 of 2


: usually intense or unbridled sexual desire : lasciviousness
He was motivated more by lust than by love.
: an intense longing : craving
a lust to succeed
: enthusiasm, eagerness
admired his lust for life
: personal inclination : wish


2 of 2


lusted; lusting; lusts

intransitive verb

: to have an intense desire or need : crave
specifically : to have a sexual urge

Example Sentences

Noun He was consumed by lust. He was driven by a lust for power. Lust for chocolate drew her into the candy store.
Recent Examples on the Web
Race becomes one more thing, like the inequality in income between the characters, or lust, that hangs over the interactions here, silently shaping everyone’s moods and reactions. Leslie Felperin, The Hollywood Reporter, 20 Mar. 2023 In Season 1, Charlie is only once seen in love (or perhaps just lust) with a shirtless mountain man hunk, in the ninth episode. Marco Della Cava, USA TODAY, 9 Mar. 2023 Can Big Pharma cure your sloth, lust, wrath, envy, pride? WIRED, 3 Feb. 2023 The entire collection was inspired by Dante's Inferno, where the leopard, the lion, and the she-wolf serve as allegories for lust, pride, and avarice. Tara Gonzalez, Harper's BAZAAR, 23 Jan. 2023 Drunk on lust, afternoon dates morph seamlessly into nights. Emma Firth, Vogue, 21 Feb. 2023 Clicking on Blake's Instagram of her shoe collection takes you to a lust-inducing list of designer tags, from bestie Christian Louboutin to YSL to Lanvin. Alex Apatoff, Peoplemag, 16 Feb. 2023 In the other six dimensions, Georgia ranked: 14th: anger and hatred 29th: excesses and vices 50th: greed Sixth: lust 25th: vanity 18th: laziness Nevada, home of Sin City itself, the city Las Vegas, ranked No. 1 on WalletHub’s analysis. Nancy Clanton, ajc, 15 Feb. 2023 Harding’s transformation — if there is one — is a devolution from workplace lust to a fatalistic level of criminality. Leland Cheuk, Washington Post, 15 Feb. 2023
Promiscuous women and men (often Michael Douglas or Richard Gere) are punished by violence or death for succumbing to lust. Carrie Wittmer, Men's Health, 5 Jan. 2023 Combining them grew from a desire to give readers the most complete advice on what to buy and what to lust over. Car and Driver, 19 Dec. 2022 Or Andrey Rublev, a 25-year-old Russian with a forehand that so many pros lust after. Matthew Futterman, New York Times, 18 Nov. 2022 Skiers and riders lust after testing the latest technology, and shops are keeping up with customer demand by offering a wide selection of high-quality performance skis. Carolyn Webber, Outside Online, 13 Feb. 2019 In 1953, Newman and Woodward were young actors on Broadway who fell passionately in love and lust with each other. Julie Hinds, Detroit Free Press, 20 July 2022 Panerai fans are bound to lust after the watch for its three years-in-the-making skeletonized automatic movement, the brand’s first-ever. Victoria Gomelsky, Robb Report, 31 Dec. 2021 To be fair, everybody in the family seems to lust for Patrizia. Bilge Ebiri, Vulture, 11 Dec. 2021 The league bosses, who lust for new stadiums, would have objected, leaned on the Yorks to build a new one ASAP. Scott Ostler, San Francisco Chronicle, 13 Nov. 2021 See More

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

Word History


Noun and Verb

Middle English, from Old English; akin to Old High German lust pleasure and perhaps to Latin lascivus wanton

First Known Use


before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 3a


12th century, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of lust was before the 12th century

Dictionary Entries Near lust

Cite this Entry

“Lust.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 26 Mar. 2023.

Kids Definition


1 of 2 noun
: sexual desire especially if strong or uncontrolled
: a strong longing : craving


2 of 2 verb
: to have a strong desire : crave
especially : to have a strong sexual desire

More from Merriam-Webster on lust

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