[self-suh-fish-uh nt, self-]


able to supply one's own or its own needs without external assistance: The nation grows enough grain to be self-sufficient.
having extreme confidence in one's own resources, powers, etc.: He was self-sufficient, and always reminded you of it.

Also self-suf·fic·ing [self-suh-fahy-sing] /ˌsɛlf səˈfaɪ sɪŋ/.

Origin of self-sufficient

First recorded in 1580–90
Related formsself-suf·fi·cien·cy, nounself-suf·fi·cient·ly, adverbun·self-suf·fi·cien·cy, nounun·self-suf·fi·cient, adjectiveun·self-suf·fi·cient·ly, adverb Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for self-sufficient

Contemporary Examples of self-sufficient

Historical Examples of self-sufficient

  • Even his ways of sitting and standing provoke me, they are so self-sufficient.

  • He was a corpulent, florid man, purse-proud, and self-sufficient.


    Rafael Sabatini

  • They were so free, so untrammelled and self-sufficient; yes, and so barbarous, too.

    Hidden Water

    Dane Coolidge

  • A structure as huge and complex as this had to be self-sufficient.

  • He looked pretty much like a self-sufficient, self-contained adult.

    Ten From Infinity

    Paul W. Fairman

British Dictionary definitions for self-sufficient




able to provide for or support oneself without the help of others
Derived Formsself-sufficiency, nounself-sufficiently, adverb
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 self-sufficient

"able to supply one's own needs," 1580s, from self- + sufficient. Related: Self-sufficiently.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper