[dih-vou-uh r, -vou-er]
- to swallow or eat up hungrily, voraciously, or ravenously.
- to consume destructively, recklessly, or wantonly: Fire devoured the old museum.
- to engulf or swallow up.
- to take in greedily with the senses or intellect: to devour the works of Freud.
- to absorb or engross wholly: a mind devoured by fears.
Origin of devour
1275–1325; Middle English devouren < Anglo-French, Old French devourer < Latin dēvorāre to swallow down, equivalent to dē- de- + vorāre to eat up
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018
Examples from the Web for devour
The critters have the propensity to devour their babies if alarmed and so require a calm environment for breeding.Whole Foods Wants to Feed You Cute, Furry Bunnies
August 19, 2014
Before he knew it, he had more animals on his hands than his snakes could devour.The Weird Underground World of Urban Animal Husbandry
May 19, 2014
Or, some of us (many of us), devour 14 in a row with breaks just for bathroom and answering the door for the delivery man.Why We Binge-Watch Television
January 8, 2014
I am more determined than ever to get into Gaza just so I can sit on the beach and devour this Bedouin feast with my hands.Watching Anthony Bourdain in Palestine
September 19, 2013
You get the sense that they want to eat each other, to devour each other.The Stars of ‘Blue is the Warmest Color’ On the Riveting Lesbian Love Story
September 1, 2013
The maddened flames leaped and crackled as if to devour him.Opera Stories from Wagner
In this region there are whole nations of cannibals, who devour their captives.Female Scripture Biographies, Vol. II
Francis Augustus Cox
Beneath his wheedling air there was the determination to devour everything.
Eager, hungry breath it was, like that of hounds seeking to devour him.
The wolf, that runs away from a lion, will devour a lamb the next moment.Clarissa, Volume 3 (of 9)
- to swallow or eat up greedily or voraciously
- to waste or destroy; consumethe flames devoured the curtains
- to consume greedily or avidly with the senses or mindhe devoured the manuscripts
- to engulf or absorbthe flood devoured the land
C14: from Old French devourer, from Latin dēvorāre to gulp down, from de- + vorāre to consume greedily; see voracious
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 devour
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper