- 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 unsustained
Could she live on, unsustained by the hope of seeing her lover?Sister Anne (Novels of Paul de Kock, Volume X)
Charles Paul de Kock
He, therefore, for the time, considered his hypothesis as unsustained.History of the Conflict Between Religion and Science
John William Draper
It lingered on, unsustained by the country and despised by its enslavers.The Felon's Track
We suffer in His company, sustained by His comfort; He suffered uncomforted and unsustained.
It was before the days of chloroform, and, unsustained by any opiate, the poor cur suffered with uncomplaining heroism.The Collector
Henry T. Tuckerman
- 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 unsustained
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper