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abstemious

[ab-stee-mee-uh s]
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adjective
  1. sparing or moderate in eating and drinking; temperate in diet.
  2. characterized by abstinence: an abstemious life.
  3. sparing: an abstemious diet.

Origin of abstemious

1615–25; < Latin abstēmius, equivalent to abs- abs- + tēm- (base of tēmētum intoxicating drink) + -ius -ious
Related formsab·ste·mi·ous·ly, adverbab·ste·mi·ous·ness, nounnon·ab·ste·mi·ous, adjectivenon·ab·ste·mi·ous·ly, adverbnon·ab·ste·mi·ous·ness, nouno·ver·ab·ste·mi·ous, adjectiveo·ver·ab·ste·mi·ous·ly, adverbo·ver·ab·ste·mi·ous·ness, nounun·ab·ste·mi·ous, adjectiveun·ab·ste·mi·ous·ly, adverbun·ab·ste·mi·ous·ness, noun

Synonyms

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ascetic, abstinent, temperate, nonindulgent.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for abstemious

Historical Examples

  • He was however naturally of an abstemious and recluse disposition.

    Imogen

    William Godwin

  • For several years he was so abstemious that he had eaten but one meal a day.

  • I knew he was of abstemious habit or I should have thought he had been drinking.

    The Moon and Sixpence

    W. Somerset Maugham

  • All through their lives they should be most careful and abstemious in their diet.

  • This, with good reason, is attributed to their abstemious lives.


British Dictionary definitions for abstemious

abstemious

adjective
  1. moderate or sparing, esp in the consumption of alcohol or food; temperate
Derived Formsabstemiously, adverbabstemiousness, noun

Word Origin

C17: from Latin abstēmius, from abs- ab- 1 + tēm-, from tēmētum intoxicating drink
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for abstemious

adj.

c.1600, from Latin abstemius "sober, temperate," from ab(s)- "from" (see ab-) + stem of temetum "strong drink," related to temulentus "drunken." Technically, of liquor, but extended in Latin to temperance in living generally. Related: Abstemiously; abstemiousness.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

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