life

Plants, animals, insects, bacteria, viruses, algae, mold and humans all have life: they grow, eat, make waste, change, and reproduce. Rocks and minerals, not doing any of these, do not have life.

Your life is the time from your birth to your death — you can see this in its origins: "to remain, persevere, continue, live." Life is everything that happens: When people say, "That's life," they mean all the events and tendencies, the human condition itself. You might hear about "city life" — or "country life" for that matter — meaning the habits and expectations of inhabitants of a particular place.

Primary Meanings of life

1.
n
the organic phenomenon that distinguishes living organisms from nonliving ones
2.
n
a characteristic state or mode of living
3.
n
the period during which something is functional (as between birth and death)
Full Definitions of life
1

n the organic phenomenon that distinguishes living organisms from nonliving ones

“there is no life on the moon”
Types:
biology
characteristic life processes and phenomena of living organisms
aerobiosis
life sustained in the presence of air or oxygen
Type of:
organic phenomenon
(biology) a natural phenomenon involving living plants and animals

n the experience of being alive; the course of human events and activities

“he could no longer cope with the complexities of life
Synonyms:
living
Type of:
experience
the content of direct observation or participation in an event

n the condition of living or the state of being alive

“while there's life there's hope”
life depends on many chemical and physical processes”
Synonyms:
aliveness, animation, living
Types:
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eternal life, life eternal
life without beginning or end
skin
a person's skin regarded as their life
endurance, survival
a state of surviving; remaining alive
subsistence
a means of surviving
Type of:
being, beingness, existence
the state or fact of existing

n living things collectively

“the oceans are teeming with life
Types:
wildlife
all living things (except people) that are undomesticated
Type of:
animate thing, living thing
a living (or once living) entity

n animation and energy in action or expression

“it was a heavy play and the actors tried in vain to give life to it”
Synonyms:
liveliness, spirit, sprightliness
Types:
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pertness
quality of being lively and confident
airiness, delicacy
lightness in movement or manner
alacrity, briskness, smartness
liveliness and eagerness
energy, muscularity, vigor, vigour, vim
an imaginative lively style (especially style of writing)
elan
enthusiastic and assured vigor and liveliness
esprit
liveliness of mind or spirit
breeziness, jauntiness
a breezy liveliness
buoyancy, irrepressibility
irrepressible liveliness and good spirit
high-spiritedness
exuberant liveliness
ebullience, enthusiasm, exuberance
overflowing with eager enjoyment or approval
ginger, pep, peppiness
liveliness and energy
verve, vitality
an energetic style
vivacity
characterized by high spirits and animation
mettlesomeness
courageous high-spiritedness
lyricism
unrestrained and exaggerated enthusiasm
madness, rabidity, rabidness
unrestrained excitement or enthusiasm
Type of:
animation, brio, invigoration, spiritedness, vivification
quality of being active or spirited or alive and vigorous
2

n a characteristic state or mode of living

“social life
“city life
“real life
Types:
ghetto
any segregated mode of living or working that results from bias or stereotyping
Type of:
being, beingness, existence
the state or fact of existing

n the course of existence of an individual; the actions and events that occur in living

“he hoped for a new life in Australia”
“he wanted to live his own life without interference from others”
Type of:
being, beingness, existence
the state or fact of existing

n the period between birth and the present time

“I have known him all his life
Type of:
period, period of time, time period
an amount of time

n the period from the present until death

“he appointed himself emperor for life
Types:
days, years
the time during which someone's life continues
Type of:
period, period of time, time period
an amount of time

n a prison term lasting as long as the prisoner lives

“he got life for killing the guard”
Synonyms:
life sentence
Type of:
prison term, sentence, time
the period of time a prisoner is imprisoned

n an account of the series of events making up a person's life

Synonyms:
biography, life history, life story
Examples:
Parallel Lives
a collection of biographies of famous pairs of Greeks and Romans written by Plutarch; used by Shakespeare in writing some of his plays
Types:
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autobiography
a biography of yourself
hagiography
a biography that idealizes or idolizes the person (especially a person who is a saint)
profile
biographical sketch
memoir
an account of the author's personal experiences
Type of:
account, chronicle, history, story
a record or narrative description of past events

n a living person

“his heroism saved a life
Type of:
individual, mortal, person, somebody, someone, soul
a human being

n a motive for living

“pottery was his life
Type of:
motivation, motive, need
the psychological feature that arouses an organism to action toward a desired goal; the reason for the action; that which gives purpose and direction to behavior
3

n the period during which something is functional (as between birth and death)

“the battery had a short life
“he lived a long and happy life
Synonyms:
life-time, lifespan, lifetime
Types:
afterlife, hereafter
life after death
kingdom come
the next world
immortality
perpetual life after death
Type of:
period, period of time, time period
an amount of time

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