To survive something is to live through it or endure it. You can survive a car accident, or you can survive your little brother's four-hour violin recital.

The verb survive is from the Latin word supervivere, “live beyond,” or “live longer than.” Originally to survive was used in the legal context as in “you survive your wife and therefore inherit her kingdom.” However, nowadays you might say that you were able to survive a holiday at your in-laws’, that your brother survived his first round of job interviews, or that you will never survive another all-day trip to the zoo in ninety degree heat.

Definitions of survive

v continue in existence after (an adversity, etc.)

“He survived the cancer against all odds”
come through, make it, pull round, pull through
succumb, yield
be fatally overwhelmed
Type of:
defeat, get the better of, overcome
win a victory over

v continue to live through hardship or adversity

“These superstitions survive in the backwaters of America”
endure, go, hold out, hold up, last, live, live on
be, live
have life, be alive
exist, live, subsist
support oneself
hold up, hold water, stand up
resist or withstand wear, criticism, etc.
survive from season to season, of plants
live out
live out one's life; live to the end

v support oneself

exist, live, subsist
endure, go, hold out, hold up, last, live, live on
continue to live through hardship or adversity
be alive
drift, freewheel
live unhurriedly, irresponsibly, or freely

v live longer than

outlast, outlive

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