- To consume is to use something up, destroy something or eat something.
- An example of consume is when people use up all the world's oil.
- An example of consume is when you eat a hamburger.
A woman consumes a hamburger.Licensed from iStockPhoto
- to destroy, as by fire; do away with
- to use up
- to spend wastefully; squander (time, energy, money, etc.)
- to eat or drink up; devour
- to absorb completely; engross or obsess: consumed with envy, a consuming interest
- to buy for one's personal needs
Origin: Middle English consumen ; from Old French consumer ; from Classical Latin consumere, to use up, eat, waste ; from com-, together plush sumere, to take ; from sub-, under plush emere, to buy, take: see redeem
- Now Rare to waste away; perish
- to buy consumer goods or services for one's personal needs
- consumable adjective
Used by arrangement with John Wiley & Sons, Inc.
verb con·sumed, con·sum·ing, con·sumes verb, transitive
- To take in as food; eat or drink up. See Synonyms at eat.
- a. To expend; use up: engines that consume less fuel; a project that consumed most of my time and energy.b. To purchase (goods or services) for direct use or ownership.
- To waste; squander. See Synonyms at waste.
- To destroy totally; ravage: flames that consumed the house; a body consumed by cancer.
- To absorb; engross: consumed with jealousy. See Synonyms at monopolize.
- To be destroyed, expended, or wasted.
- To purchase economic goods and services: a society that consumes as fast as it produces.
Origin: Middle English consumen, from Latin cōnsūmere : com-, intensive pref.; see com- + sūmere, to take; see em- in Indo-European roots.