View synonyms for devour


[ dih-vou-uhr, -vou-er ]

verb (used with object)

  1. to swallow or eat up hungrily, voraciously, or ravenously.
  2. to consume destructively, recklessly, or wantonly:

    Fire devoured the old museum.

  3. to engulf or swallow up.
  4. to take in greedily with the senses or intellect:

    to devour the works of Freud.

  5. to absorb or engross wholly:

    a mind devoured by fears.


/ dɪˈvaʊə /


  1. to swallow or eat up greedily or voraciously
  2. to waste or destroy; consume

    the flames devoured the curtains

  3. to consume greedily or avidly with the senses or mind

    he devoured the manuscripts

  4. to engulf or absorb

    the flood devoured the land

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Derived Forms

  • deˈvourer, noun
  • deˈvouring, adjective
  • deˈvouringly, adverb

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Other Words From

  • de·vourer noun
  • de·vouring·ly adverb
  • de·vouring·ness noun
  • inter·de·vour verb (used with object)
  • prede·vour verb (used with object)
  • rede·vour verb (used with object)
  • self-de·vouring adjective
  • unde·voured adjective

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Word History and Origins

Origin of devour1

First recorded in 1275–1325; Middle English devouren, from Anglo-French, Old French devourer, from Latin dēvorāre “to swallow down,” from dē- de- + vorāre “to eat up”

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Word History and Origins

Origin of devour1

C14: from Old French devourer, from Latin dēvorāre to gulp down, from de- + vorāre to consume greedily; see voracious

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Example Sentences

Sure enough, the water spread upward, devouring salts as it went.

Populations across the globe today may devour Starbucks, KFC, and Coca-Cola.

Meanwhile, Krans devoured films like Indiana Jones and The Goonies—tales of explorers and treasure-hunters.

Trader Joe’sThese button-sized cookies are piled into a plastic bucket so they can be devoured by the handful.

The smell of “world-famous” apple pies will still be wafting across New England, and the treats are just as easily devoured at six-foot-spaced outdoor tables.

From Eater

The critters have the propensity to devour their babies if alarmed and so require a calm environment for breeding.

Before he knew it, he had more animals on his hands than his snakes could devour.

Finally, an answer to that long-burning question: Where can we watch foodie hamsters devour gourmet miniature burritos?

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.

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.

And it shall devour the mountains, and burn the wilderness, and consume all that is green as with fire.

And thou hast delivered me, according to the multitude of the mercy of thy name, from them that did roar, prepared to devour.

But ask for friars, soldiers, and State dependents to come and devour our wealth, and instantly you will get them.

The Syrians from the east, and, the Philistines from the west: and they shall devour Israel with open mouth.

On land and in sea the animal creation chase and maim, and slay and devour each other.


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