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Definition of "consume" [con•sume]

  • To take in as food; eat or drink up. See Synonyms at eat. (verb-transitive)
  • To expend; use up: engines that consume less fuel; a project that consumed most of my time and energy. (verb-transitive)
  • To purchase (goods or services) for direct use or ownership. (verb-transitive)
  • To waste; squander. See Synonyms at waste. (verb-transitive)
  • To destroy totally; ravage: flames that consumed the house; a body consumed by cancer. (verb-transitive)

American Heritage(R) Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright (c) 2011 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

Use "consume" in a sentence
  • "The word consume comes from the Latin con - altogether + sumere - to take up, lay hold of, etc."
  • "That abundance of food, of which, in consequence of the improvement of land, many people have the disposal beyond what they themselves can consume, is the great cause of the demand both for precious metals and the precious stones, as well as for every other conveniency and ornament of dress, lodging, household furniture, and equipage."
  • "Here in America, we believe in the right to choose for ourselves on many issues, and what we consume is one of those areas where people do not want the gov't telling them what they can and can't do."