- to support, hold, or bear up from below; bear the weight of, as a structure.
- to bear (a burden, charge, etc.).
- to undergo, experience, or suffer (injury, loss, etc.); endure without giving way or yielding.
- to keep (a person, the mind, the spirits, etc.) from giving way, as under trial or affliction.
- to keep up or keep going, as an action or process: to sustain a conversation.
- to supply with food, drink, and other necessities of life.
- to provide for (an institution or the like) by furnishing means or funds.
- to support (a cause or the like) by aid or approval.
- to uphold as valid, just, or correct, as a claim or the person making it: The judge sustained the lawyer's objection.
- to confirm or corroborate, as a statement: Further investigation sustained my suspicions.
Origin of sustain
1250–1300; Middle English suste(i)nen < Anglo-French sustenir, Old French < Latin sustinēre to uphold, equivalent to sus- sus- + -tinēre, combining form of tenēre to hold
SynonymsSee more synonyms for on Thesaurus.com
1. See support.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018
Examples from the Web for sustained
Any restaurant with a sustained fame ends up becoming a set, of sorts, and on that front, Sotto Sotto cinched it.The Fiery Death of Sotto Sotto, Toronto’s Celebrity Hotspot
December 30, 2014
What could have sustained him during these darkest of hours?The Catholic Philosopher Who Took on Hitler
John Henry Crosby
December 26, 2014
So yes, there was a lot of meaty stuff that sustained me over those eight years.How Richard Pryor Beat Bill Cosby and Transformed America
David Yaffe, Scott Saul
December 10, 2014
Beijing, famously, launched a coordinated and sustained attack against Google a half decade ago to injure its business in China.Sony Blames North Korea for Hacking, but Washington Left Them Completely Vulnerable
Gordon G. Chang
December 3, 2014
The fact that the virus is still alive has sustained many safety concerns, both rational and irrational, about its use.Powdered Measles Vaccine Could Be Huge for Developing World
December 2, 2014
She might die, and if he ever returned it would be to realize the loss he had sustained.Brave and Bold
Mr. Disraeli's motion was lost, and the ministry was sustained.The Grand Old Man
Richard B. Cook
This fact is sustained by evidences teeming upon us from every point of the compass.Ridgeway
A surprise, followed by a sustained attack, has been resisted.The Story of the Malakand Field Force
Sir Winston S. Churchill
A new Ahasuerus, cursed by inexpiable crime, yet sustained by a great purpose.Green Mansions
W. H. Hudson
- to hold up under; withstandto sustain great provocation
- to undergo (an injury, loss, etc); sufferto sustain a broken arm
- to maintain or prolongto sustain a discussion
- to support physically from below
- to provide for or give support to, esp by supplying necessitiesto sustain one's family; to sustain a charity
- to keep up the vitality or courage of
- to uphold or affirm the justice or validity ofto sustain a decision
- to establish the truth of; confirm
- music the prolongation of a note, by playing technique or electronics
C13: via Old French from Latin sustinēre to hold up, from sub- + tenēre to hold
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 sustained
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper