Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. Material, usually of plant or animal origin, that contains or consists of essential body nutrients, such as carbohydrates, fats, proteins, vitamins, or minerals, and is ingested and assimilated by an organism to produce energy, stimulate growth, and maintain life.
  • n. A specified kind of nourishment: breakfast food; plant food.
  • n. Nourishment eaten in solid form: food and drink.
  • n. Something that nourishes or sustains in a way suggestive of physical nourishment: food for thought; food for the soul.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. Any substance that is or can be consumed by living organisms, especially by eating, in order to sustain life.
  • n. Anything intended to supply energy or nourishment of an entity or idea.
  • n. A foodstuff.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. What is fed upon; that which goes to support life by being received within, and assimilated by, the organism of an animal or a plant; nutriment; aliment; especially, what is eaten by animals for nourishment.
  • n. Anything that instructs the intellect, excites the feelings, or molds habits of character; that which nourishes.
  • transitive v. To supply with food.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • To feed; supply; figuratively, to soothe; flatter; entertain with promises.
  • n. What is eaten for nourishment; whatever supplies nourishment to organic bodies; nutriment; aliment; victuals; provisions: as, the food of animals consists mainly of organic substances; a great scarcity of food; the food of plants.
  • n. Hence Anything that sustains, nourishes, and augments.
  • n. Anything serving as material for consumption or use.
  • n. A person fed or brought up; a person, as a child, under nurture; in an extended sense, any person; a creature.
  • n. Synonyms Provender, etc. (see feed, n.); sustenance, fare, cheer, viands.
  • n. An improper form of feud.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. any substance that can be metabolized by an animal to give energy and build tissue
  • n. anything that provides mental stimulus for thinking
  • n. any solid substance (as opposed to liquid) that is used as a source of nourishment

Etymologies

Middle English fode, from Old English fōda; see pā- in Indo-European roots.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Middle English fode, fude, from Old English fōda ("food"), from Proto-Germanic *fōdô (“food”), from Proto-Indo-European *peh₂- (“to guard, graze, feed”). Cognate with Scots fuid ("food"), Low German föde, vöde ("food"), Danish føde ("food"), Swedish föda ("food"), Icelandic fæða, fæði ("food"), Gothic 𐍆𐍉𐌳𐌴𐌹𐌽𐍃 (fōdeins, "food"), Latin pānis ("bread, food"), Latin pāscō ("feed, nourish", v). Related to fodder, foster. (Wiktionary)

Examples

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