[ dahy ]
See synonyms for: diedicedieddies on Thesaurus.com

verb (used without object),died, dy·ing.
  1. to cease to live; undergo the complete and permanent cessation of all vital functions; become dead.

  2. (of something inanimate) to cease to exist: The laughter died on his lips.

  1. to lose force, strength, or active qualities: Superstitions die slowly.

  2. to cease to function; stop: The motor died.

  3. to be no longer subject; become indifferent: to die to worldly matters.

  4. to pass gradually; fade or subside gradually (usually followed by away, out, or down): The storm slowly died down.

  5. Theology. to lose spiritual life.

  6. to faint or languish.

  7. to suffer as if fatally: I'm dying of boredom!

  8. to pine with desire, love, longing, etc.: I'm dying to see my home again.

  9. to desire or want keenly or greatly: I'm dying for a cup of coffee.

Verb Phrases
  1. die away, (of a sound) to become weaker or fainter and then cease: The hoofbeats gradually died away.

  2. die down, to become calm or quiet; subside.

  1. die off, to die one after another until the number is greatly reduced: Her friends are dying off.

  2. die out,

    • to cease to exist; become extinct: Both lines of the family died out before the turn of the century.

    • to die away; fade; subside: The roar of the engines died out as the rocket vanished into the clouds.

Idioms about die

  1. die hard,

    • to die only after a bitter struggle.

    • to give way or surrender slowly or with difficulty: Childhood beliefs die hard.

  2. die standing up, Theater. (of a performance) to be received with silence rather than applause.

  1. never say die, never give up hope; never abandon one's efforts.

  2. to die for, stunning; remarkable: That dress is to die for.

Origin of die

First recorded in 1150–1200; Middle English dien, deien, from Old Norse deyja; cf. dead, death

synonym study For die

1. Die, pass away ( pass on; pass ), perish mean to relinquish life. To die is to become dead from any cause and in any circumstances. It is the simplest, plainest, and most direct word for this idea, and is used figuratively of anything that has once displayed activity: An echo, flame, storm, rumor dies. Pass away (or pass on or pass ) is a commonly used euphemism implying a continuation of life after death: Grandfather passed away ( passed on or passed ). Perish, a more literary term, implies death under harsh circumstances such as hunger, cold, neglect, etc.; figuratively, perish connotes utter extinction: Hardship caused many pioneers to perish. Ancient Egyptian civilization has perished.

Other words for die

Words that may be confused with die

Words Nearby die

Other definitions for die (2 of 2)

[ dahy ]

noun,plural dies for 1, 2, 4, dice for 3.
  1. Machinery.

    • any of various devices for cutting or forming material in a press or a stamping or forging machine.

    • a hollow device of steel, often composed of several pieces to be fitted into a stock, for cutting the threads of bolts or the like.

    • one of the separate pieces of such a device.

    • a steel block or plate with small conical holes through which wire, plastic rods, etc., are drawn.

  2. an engraved stamp for impressing a design upon some softer material, as in coining money.

  1. singular of dice.

  2. Architecture. dado (def. 1).

verb (used with object),died, die·ing.
  1. to impress, shape, or cut with a die.

Origin of die

First recorded in 1300–50; Middle English de (in early Modern English taking the vowel of the plural form dice), from Old French de(i), presumably from Latin datum “given” (neuter past participle of dare “to give”), perhaps in the derivative sense “put, placed,” hence “played, cast”

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

How to use die in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for die (1 of 2)


/ (daɪ) /

verbdies, dying or died (mainly intr)
  1. (of an organism or its cells, organs, etc) to cease all biological activity permanently: she died of pneumonia

  2. (of something inanimate) to cease to exist; come to an end: the memory of her will never die

  1. (often foll by away, down, or out) to lose strength, power, or energy, esp by degrees

  2. (often foll by away or down) to become calm or quiet; subside: the noise slowly died down

  3. to stop functioning: the engine died

  4. to languish or pine, as with love, longing, etc

  5. (usually foll by of) informal to be nearly overcome (with laughter, boredom, etc)

  6. theol to lack spiritual life within the soul, thus separating it from God and leading to eternal punishment

  7. (tr) to undergo or suffer (a death of a specified kind) (esp in phrases such as die a saintly death)

  8. (foll by to) to become indifferent or apathetic (to): to die to the world

  9. never say die informal never give up

  10. die hard to cease to exist after resistance or a struggle: old habits die hard

  11. die in harness to die while still working or active, prior to retirement

  12. be dying (foll by for or an infinitive) to be eager or desperate (for something or to do something): I'm dying to see the new house

  13. to die for informal highly desirable: a salary to die for

Origin of die

Old English dīegan, probably of Scandinavian origin; compare Old Norse deyja, Old High German touwen

usage For die

It was formerly considered incorrect to use the preposition from after die, but of and from are now both acceptable: he died of/from his injuries

British Dictionary definitions for die (2 of 2)


/ (daɪ) /

    • a shaped block of metal or other hard material used to cut or form metal in a drop forge, press, or similar device

    • a tool of metal, silicon carbide, or other hard material with a conical hole through which wires, rods, or tubes are drawn to reduce their diameter

  1. an internally-threaded tool for cutting external threads: Compare tap 2 (def. 6)

  1. a casting mould giving accurate dimensions and a good surface to the object cast: See also die-cast

  2. architect the dado of a pedestal, usually cubic

  3. another name for dice (def. 2)

  4. as straight as a die perfectly honest

  5. the die is cast the decision that commits a person irrevocably to an action has been taken

Origin of die

C13 dee, from Old French de, perhaps from Vulgar Latin datum (unattested) a piece in games, noun use of past participle of Latin dare to play

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

Other Idioms and Phrases with die


In addition to the idioms beginning with die

  • die away
  • die down
  • die for
  • die hard
  • die in harness
  • die is cast, the
  • die laughing
  • die off
  • die out
  • die to
  • die with one's boots on

also see:

  • curl up (and die)
  • do or die
  • it's to die
  • never say die

The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.