starve

The verb starve means suffering or death caused by a lack of food, though people also use it as a dramatic way to say they are hungry, as in, "If we don't start cooking dinner now, I think I'll starve."

The word starve has origins in the Old English word steorfan, meaning “to die.” It is true that if you don't eat for a period of time, you could starve, meaning die from hunger. Today, starve is also used to describe less severe limitations on food, such as when you tell your friend, "I have to go to lunch now. I'm starving." This is a way of describing discomfort caused by hunger.

Definitions of starve
  1. verb
    die of food deprivation
    “The political prisoners starved to death”
    synonyms: famish
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    type of:
    buy the farm, cash in one's chips, choke, conk, croak, decease, die, drop dead, exit, expire, give-up the ghost, go, kick the bucket, pass, pass away, perish, pop off, snuff it
    pass from physical life and lose all bodily attributes and functions necessary to sustain life
  2. verb
    be hungry; go without food
    “Let's eat--I'm starving!”
    synonyms: famish, hunger
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    Antonyms:
    be full
    be sated, have enough to eat
    type of:
    hurt, suffer
    feel pain or be in pain
  3. verb
    deprive of a necessity and cause suffering
    “he is starving her of love”
    “The engine was starved of fuel”
    Synonyms:
    famish
    deprive of food
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    type of:
    deprive
    keep from having, keeping, or obtaining
  4. verb
    deprive of food
    “They starved the prisoners”
    synonyms: famish
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    Antonyms:
    feed, give
    give food to
    type of:
    deprive
    keep from having, keeping, or obtaining
  5. verb
    have a craving, appetite, or great desire for
    synonyms: crave, hunger, lust, thirst
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    type of:
    desire, want
    feel or have a desire for; want strongly
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