A Dictionary of the English Language
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Starve (verb active)

View Scan · View Transcription · from page 1930

View Scan · View Transcription · from page 1930

To Starve. v.a.

  1. To kill with hunger.

    I cannot blame his cousin king,
    That wish'd him on the barren mountains starv'd.
    Shakesp.

    Hunger and thirst, or guns and swords,
    Give the same death in different words:
    To push this argument no further,
    To starve a man in law is murther.
    Prior.

    If they had died through fasting, when meat was at hand, they would have been guilty of starving themselves. Pope.

  2. To subdue by famine.

                Thy desires
    Are wolfish, bloody, starv'd, and ravenous.
    Shakespeare.

    He would have worn her out by slow degrees,
    As men by fasting starve th' untam'd disease.
    Dryden.

    Attalus endeavoured to starve Italy, by stopping their convoy of provisions from Africa. Arbuthnot on Coins.

  3. To kill with cold.

    From beds of raging fire to starve in ice
    Their soft ethereal warmth, and there to pine
    Immoveable, infix'd, and frozen round.
    Milton's Par. Lost.

  4. To deprive of force or vigour.

    The powers of their minds are starved by disuse, and have lost that reach and strength which nature fitted them to receive. Locke.

Sources: Arbuthnot, John (227) · Dryden, John (788) · Shakespeare's Henry IV, Part 1 (46) · Locke, John (269) · Shakespeare's Merchant of Venice (83) · Milton, John (449) · Pope, Alexander (393) · Prior, Matthew (162)

Attributes: Verb Active (289)

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Cite this page: Johnson, Samuel. "Starve (verb active)." A Dictionary of the English Language: A Digital Edition of the 1755 Classic by Samuel Johnson. Edited by Brandi Besalke. Last modified: June 26, 2013. http://johnsonsdictionaryonline.com/?p=15814.


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